Agra fair with some 1,100 exhibitors in-person again
Gornja Radgona – Some 1,100 exhibitors from 29 countries will be featured at the 59th Agra trade fair for agricultural products opening in Gornja Radgona in the north-east of the country on Saturday as the event returns to an in-person format after a scaled-down version was held online and on-site last year.
This will be the first large in-person fair in Slovenia since the epidemic was declared in March 2020, but a decision for the on-site version was not easy.
A three-year break for a fair such as Agra, the country’s largest agri and food fair, would be catastrophic, Pomurski Sejem CEO Janez Erjavec explained for the STA.
The decision was taken already last December, and since the pandemic has been fluctuating, the organiser Pomurski Sejem has been on the brink of cancelling it several times, he said.
It is key for an international agri and food fair not to have only exhibitors but also a number of accompanying events such as shows, lectures or gradings etc.
“Even if the fair will be a bit scaled down, we’re making it for those who will visit it [in person] and those who won’t,” Erjavec said but would not dare predict the turnout.
When it spanned over ten days, Agra used to attract almost 200,000 visitors, while 100,000-120,000 turned out in recent years.
The fair will run until Thursday on an area of almost 54,000 square metres, celebrating the International Year of Fruits and Vegetables as well as showcasing innovation, and farming machinery and products.
The focus will be on the most prominent and most excellent Slovenian producers, with a strong presence of forestry equipment.
France, one of the largest food producers in Europe, will be the partner country, presenting its food industry under the slogan Taste France, to be accompanied by a show of old and new Citroen vehicles.
EU institutions and major organisations and companies from neighbouring countries will also be present, with a Slovenia-Hungary business forum being one of the events.
Meanwhile, members of the Association of Agricultural and Forestry Technology decided not to take part, seeing such a big event as too much of a risk amid the pandemic.
The fair is to be declared open by President Borut Pahor, while the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Food will also organise several events.
The events will feature workshops, meetings of experts, produce markets, animal shows and model plantations.
Visitors will have to meet the requirement of having recovered from Covid, having been vaccinated or tested, with testing available free of charge throughout the fair.
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