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Beyond Goes South for Farm Progress Show        

Dectur, Illinois Hosts 64th Annual FPS

September 4, 2017

Last week our business development team traveled down to Decatur, Illinois for the largest outdoor farm event of the year (and in the country) – The Farm Progress Show. The massive show draws visitors from 46 states and showcases powerhouse agriculture players like John Deer, Titan, Caterpillar, and Bayer. With hundreds of exhibitors and over 150,000 visitors, the quaint town of Decatur becomes a hub for everything farm related. People drive and fly in (approx. 100 private planes land at the local airport over the 3 day show) to take in the new advancements and products in agriculture and crop science. The show stretches over 70 acres and has impressive landscaping capabilities that have been fine tuned since moving to Brix Farms in 2005. Over 5,800 plants, shrubs, and trees are planted with 2,500 yards of mulch to match. Landscaping companies prep a month in advance and pull all nighters to ensure the show grounds are in peak condition for the hoards of visitors. Exhibit areas aren’t an easy clean up though – post FPS cleanup and rehabilitation takes another 30 days. Overall, the show is well run spectacle that drives in tremendous local business and gives small and large companies the network and sales opportunities to push through the winter.


Caterpillar and John Deere display their tractors and farm equipment at their FPS tents.

Pentair Irrigation Solutions on Tech Target
While we were trekking through the show (and yes, there were golf carts for rent to cruise through the “tent city”) we saw several new products that caught our eye. One of which was the new spray nozzle technology from Pentair and Hypro. They designed specialty color spray nozzles that can be used for consumer’s specific purposes depending on their watering needs. For example, the ESI – Six stream is perfect for liquid fertilizer for soil seeded crops, while the the Ultra Lo-Drift distributes water in a wider, three dimensional spray of herbicide when drift control is essential.


With so many huge exhibitors like Bayer using white tents, locals have nicknamed the grounds “tent city.”

Farming of the Future
Autonomous tractors were on display again this year at the show. These next generation machines open a wealth of possibilities for farmers who need an extra set of “hands” and with the new technology one farmer can depict the routes of several tractors without having to be physically driving. The progress and data are all recorded and accessble to the farmer from the comfort of their pickup or office. Similar to autonomous cars, not all are welcoming of the new technology and fear a machine can’t encompass the generations of farmer experience and knowledge needed to run a successful farm or make appropriate driver decisions. To see these machines in action, visit ASI’s website. They are the tech company spearheading the autonomous tractor movement.


Image source: Autonomous Solutions, Inc.


Bigger is better at FPS, especially when it comes to the massive John Deere combine harvesting machinery.

Familiar Faces at FPS
We saw a familiar face at the Hasqvrna exhibit. Our past client, Hasqvrna, were displaying their chainsaws at FPS. Their anti-vibration technology dulls and absorbs the pulsing creating a more comfortable and safer cut. Their chainsaws also include the patented Air Injection centrifugal air cleaning system that extends the life of the saw and reduces traditional wear and tear. Hasqvrna chainsaws are “farm tough” and perfect for heavy duty jobs.


Image source: Hasqvrna.

Power Pushers and Washers

Hotsy Equipment Company displayed their powerful pressure washers at FPS.  The machines are strong enough to tackle the toughest mud, seed, and anything the cows may bring home.  They can strip clean tractors and semis in seconds and match the ruggedness of farm life. Their slogan “Nothing Cleans Like a Hotsy” rang through the show loud and clear.


Despite the white picket fence and potted flowers, Hotsy Powerwashers are rugged and give a mean clean.

The Power Pusher E-750 Electric Wheelbarrow from Nu-Star takes the back aching pressure off lugging supplies through farmland and can carry up to 1000 pounds of logs, seed, soil, etc. The galvanized steal ‘barrow is designed to minimize strain and improve the efficiency of the user. Powered by a quiet 24 volt battery, the E-750 tub can run up to 5 miles on one charge. The Minnesota based company also offers customized attachments like tree dollies and concrete cap funnels. The ergonomic design holds true to the company slogan of “if it rolls, we can move it.”


Image source: Construction Complete.

The Farm Progress Show was a great way to wrap up the summer season and we look forward to exploring more products and designs this fall in the farm and agriculture industry.  We wish we had more time to visit everything at the show, we’ll have to wait until next year’s show in Boone, Iowa!


Agri-Fab is ready for fall with their 110 pound Push Spreader.

For more information on our equipment and machinery work please visit our work page here or drop us a note at info@beyonddesignchicago.com

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