World Ag Expo is celebrating 50 years of being a market place and a celebration of all things agriculture. Where dealers, producers and sellers can converse, invent and innovate new ideas in agriculture.
The World Ag Expo began in 1968, and attracted 157 exhibitors and 28,000 visitors. By the second year, the show doubled in both visitors and exhibitors. Originally named “Tulare’s Field and Row Crop Equipment Show” its name was soon changed in 1969 to “California Farm Equipment Show”. In 1972, the very first foreign manufactures began displaying their products and lead to another name change, “California Farm Equipment Show and International Exposition”. It wasn’t until 2001 that the name of the show was changed to what we know it as today, the World Ag Expo.
The World Ag Expo hosts 1,500 exhibitors displaying new and top-of the line technology and equipment on 2.6 million square feet of show grounds. This year from February 14-16, 2017 in Tulare, California, the largest annual agricultural show has an annual average of 100,000 individuals from over 70 different countries. With 20% of their attendees representing the dairy & livestock industry. The Farm Credit Dairy Center, built in 1991, is an 80,000 square foot building featuring displays of the latest in dairy equipment, technology and services, this building is where most of these photos are taken in.
While at the World Ag Expo, I was able to meet two very interesting people, Erik Wilson and Steve Malanca, two life long friends and founders of My Job Depends on Ag. For those of you who don’t know what My Job Depends on Ag is, it is an international company that sells decals, hats and shirts with the purpose of promoting the agriculture industry. All of their proceeds are donated to Central Valley Community Foundation, where they then donate to different scholarships, colleges and agriculture based programs, such as FFA and California Holstein National Convention Participants. Not only do they donate to 501(c)3s, but they also do speeches about the agriculture industry to schools from the range of 3rd grade to college. As my final question for the day, I asked when would you consider yourself successful when it comes to My Job Depends on Ag? And Mr. Wilson replied back, “When people whos jobs might not be directly influenced by the agriculture industry, but still realizes that no matter what they do, their life still depends on agriculture and they are proud of that fact.”