Iowa State to share agricultural expertise in Farm Progress Show

Iowa State will host an exhibit at the Farm Progress Show this week, featuring informational areas and opportunities to engage with experts on various agricultural topics.

The Farm Progress show is the nation’s largest outdoor farm event. According to its website, the event annually hosts over 600 exhibitors and sees visitors from across the country. The show takes place from Tuesday to Thursday at 1827 217th Street, Boone, Iowa.

The show rotates between two locations: taking place in Decatur, Illinois, on odd numbered years, and Boone, Iowa, on even numbered years. Due to the pandemic, the Farm Progress Show was canceled in 2020. Thus, this year will be Iowa State’s first time holding an agricultural exhibit at the show since 2018.

Kendall Lamkey, agronomy department chair and co-chair of the Farm Progress Show planning committee, said the goal of the exhibit is to highlight some of the work done at Iowa State and to interact with observers.

“It’s all about being able to share information— the goal of the show’s to interact with people,” Lamkey said. “People [who attend the show] are free to come and come and talk to us about whatever’s on their mind because it’s a two way street.”

The exhibit includes content areas, which focus on educating visitors and allowing them to join conversations about the various topics included at the exhibit. Some of the biggest topics of the exhibit are carbon sequestration and storage and water quality issues.

“We tried to assign these around what we think people might be interested in, so there’s a lot of interest in carbon and carbon storage in Iowa soils and our cropping system,” Lamkey said. “We think there’ll be a lot of people stop by and talk about carbon and carbon credits and that sort of thing, just as an example.”

The carbon content area will include a couple monitors featuring informational videos on processes surrounding carbon dioxide and the processes around carbon sequestration. There will also be professionals and experts from Iowa State to engage with visitors and exchange info.

“Each of [the content areas] will have staff there during the show,” Lamkey said. “They’ll be having hands on displays and a lot of electronic stuff, illustrating what’s going on in those specific areas.”

Iowa State will also have some displays outside of the tent to draw in some more visitors. According to Lamkey, one of Iowa State’s displays outside of the tent will be a combine with an attachment named the “Weed Seed Destructor,” which is relatively new in the U.S.

“It’s showing off just a part of what we do, not everything; this is related primarily to crop production,” Lamkey said. “And it’s a two way street. You know, we’re there to learn from the people who are coming through the show and talking with us, and we hope they can take a little bit away from what we have to share with them.”