Maine Agricultural Trades Show to be held January 7–9, 2014

January 4, 2014

For more information, contact: Jessica Nixon at (207) 287-3494

A 3-day event highlighting Maine agriculture

AUGUSTA—The 73rd Annual Maine Agricultural Trades Show will be held Tuesday, January 7, through Thursday, January 9, 2014, at the Augusta Civic Center. Hosted by the Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation, and Forestry, the show will feature dozens of lectures, demonstrations, and meetings involving some 40 major agricultural organizations, as well as over 110 exhibits featuring the newest in agricultural products, equipment, and services. One of the state’s largest agricultural exhibitions, the event is expected to draw more than 5,000 people from around the state over the course of three days.

The annual show features several new offerings for attendees, in addition to a wide variety of presentations covering topics such as farm energy options, small woodlot issues, nutrient management, and how to become a licensed cheese maker. This year’s new additions include: Cooking with Maine Agriculture, featuring local Maine food and Chefs; Youth Day, involvement with agriculture in special drawings, activities, and learning; a Giant Pumpkin Growers Forum; and Young Farmers Networking.

Governor Paul R. LePage will be on hand Tuesday for the Trades Show opening, in recognition of the importance of Maine agriculture to the economy and potential for new job creation. The Governor will also join Commissioner Walt Whitcomb in publicly recognizing this year’s recipient of the Commissioner’s Distinguished Service Award.

“Maine agriculture has been increasing its contribution to the Maine economy in terms of the number of farms and the market value of agricultural products sold,” said Governor Paul R. LePage. “Its potential is even greater when you consider the growing interest in locally grown foods and the quality of Maine products. The Trades Show is also an opportunity to talk about how Maine’s agriculture, conservation and forest agency is more efficiently and effectively delivering more services and promoting growth in Maine’s natural resource economy.”

Commissioner Walt Whitcomb stressed that this year’s show will update Maine’s agricultural community and consumers on steps the Department has taken to better serve Maine agriculture, conservation and foresty interests. This includes drawing attention to the Department’s new website.

“Maine’s largest natural resource agency is embracing the future with great optimism regarding the potential for the growth of agriculture, forestry and Maine made products in general,” said Whitcomb. “Maine’s natural resource industry generates over a billion dollars in economic benefits and employs thousands of people growing, transporting, processing, and marketing of the widest array of fresh produce in the Northeast. Our annual Trades Show embodies the concept that locally grown food supports healthy lifestyles and highlights the uniqueness of Maine products.”

The show also provides opportunities for growers, pesticide applicators, and dealers to get up to speed on the latest developments in pest management and earn credits required for pesticide license recertification. The Maine Board of Pesticides Control will also be on hand to discuss basic safety training.

Whether a visitor is a farmer, hobbyist, educator, or supplier, this three-day event has something for everyone. It provides an atmosphere for attendees to walk through, observe, and educate themselves about the different areas of agriculture, and furnishes a showplace for farmers and producers to come and see the most up-to date-farm equipment and farming needs. The show offers a wealth of knowledge for non-farmers to learn about agriculture, and is a great opportunity to learn how Maine-grown food is harvested and processed.

Show hours will be:

  • Tuesday, January 7, 9:00 am–5:00 pm
  • Wednesday, January 8, 9:00 am–8:00 pm
  • Thursday, January 9, 9:00 am–3:00 pm

Admission is free admission and open to the public.

The complete program and schedule are available at: http://www.getrealmaine.com/

For more information about the Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry, go to: http://www.maine.gov/acf