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Gerry Hayden, a Kentucky farmer and co-chair of the 2018 Commodity Classic, said the trade show connects curious farmers with the people who can answer their questions:
The caliber of people that go to Classic are the producers that are really interested, that are really aggressive. They know that each one of these booths has a person that is understanding and knowledgeable on what they’re trying to sell or produce; so it’s when the best of the best get together.
I think of it as density, and I'm not talking about equipment parts, wheel to wheel. I'm talking about density of knowledge from the presenters, from the folks that are out the show. This is just a really high-quality show, where people can get answers and take a look at some things that might be new to them.
Paul Taylor, an Illinois farmer and co-chair of the 2018 Commodity Classic, says the quality of farmers at Commodity Classic encourages exhibitors to bring their best people:
This tradeshow is not a group of tire kickers. This is folks that come, they're important decision-makers in the ag world and decision makers on their farm. As a consequence, agribusiness folks bring the people to help answer those important questions, especially with newer technology.
Gerry Hayden, a Kentucky farmer and co-chair of the 2018 Commodity Classic, said that every educational session is selected by farmer, for farmers:
We're continuing to look for new ways to be more efficient, to learn more about our crops, how to sell our crops, how to market our crops. Classic, Commodity Classic is a means of all of this put together and under one roof. It's farmer-led, farmer-focused, so we know what the average person that comes needs to understand and what's on their mind.
Paul Taylor, an Illinois farmer and co-chair of the 2018 Commodity Classic, said that the educational sessions at Commodity Classic are designed to challenge and inspire every farmer who attends:
I hope that the show helps you raise questions about the way you do things. Are we doing this the best way to survive, to be profitable, to be conscientious to our neighbors, to our environment, and are we going to be profitable and sustainable in the long term. That's what we want the agricultural producers to be. We want them to survive, we want them to be profitable, and we want them to be well versed in not only the topic but the technology of the day.
Paul Taylor, an Illinois farmer and co-chair of the 2018 Commodity Classic, said that each education session is selected by farmers, ensuring that the topics are relevant for each farmer who attends:
We ask for these proposals; they bring them in; we review them. That is a rigorous and time-consuming process at times to identify topics of interest or fit the time slots that we have, how much we think people's interest will be; and so it's really sitting down and looking at what is important to our peers.