A common trait of farmers all over the world is their sense of community, and the willingness to connect and share best practice in techniques and innovation. In Ireland, the National Ploughing Championships has been the focal point of farming excellence since 1931, and continues today bringing more than 280,000 people together over three days.
Ploughing19’ has evolved significantly since its inception, this years event has seen record crowds, over 1700 exhibitors and almost 2 million square feet of trade space, these numbers reflect an agri economy which is growing rapidly and taking a leadership role in agri technology. With Figureds growing presence in the UK, and the growth of agri tech in the Ireland it was a date we couldn't miss.
The Kiwi Connection
Ireland and New Zealand have always had a strong connection, our cultural and geographic similarities means there is a willingness to share ideas and experiences. Having opened the new New Zealand embassy opened recently in Dublin, our partners at NZTE were on the ground at Ploughing. Complemented by strong similarities between Kiwi and Irish farming systems, Figured feels right at home in Ireland.
Community and Connectedness
Our strongest observation from Ploughing is the deep connectedness financial professionals have within the Agri Industry, leading accounting firm IFAC not only had an obvious presence at Ploughing, but the relationships between the accounting professionals at IFAC and agri banking professionals at Bank of Ireland were visible. Add to these relationships the strong sense of community in Irish farming communities and the appetite for collaborative farming teams is as strong in Ireland as anywhere we’ve seen.
Technology is never far from growing agri economies, and in Ireland Agri Tech is being adopted by farmers and their advisors as they look to grow their operations effectively and sustainably, tools like Herd Watch have made animal tracking and management simple and seamless for Irish farmers, and conversations about Figured with attendees at Ploughing have shown us that the demand for better financial management is as strong in Ireland as in New Zealand.
As for what the future holds, in an increasingly uncertain agri market and with brexit in the background, Ireland has a strong agri industry supported by proactive, technology enabled professionals. We’re looking forward to the year ahead and to Ploughing 2020.