The largest agricultural and open-air event in southern Australia is again set to break records at the 56th annual Henty Machinery Field Days 17-19 September.
Exhibitors representing more than 3500 companies will display their machinery and goods on 1200 sites valued at almost $120 million.
Chief Executive Officer Belinda Anderson said this year’s field days were expected to equal the largest on record in terms of exhibitor area with 14km of shopfront.
“The interest in the field days from exhibitors and visitors alike continues to grow year-on-year with the site being the biggest it’s ever been in terms of physical area,’’ Mrs Anderson said.
Drawcards at the 2019 event will be the daily sheep and yard dog trials, Baker Seed Co agronomy demonstration site, 2019 Natural Fibre Fashion Awards, vintage farm machinery, reptile awareness display, and the Farm Gate Produce Market pavilion with cooking demonstrations and entertainment.
New to the field days this year will be the AgriFutures NextGen seminar facilitated by NSW-ACT AgriFutures Rural Woman of the Year Jo Palmer, of The Rock.
Guest speakers will cover the topics of women in agriculture, future proofing towns and businesses, agricultural innovation, machinery of the future and solving critical industry challenges
The field days will be officially opened on Tuesday, September 17 at 11am by AgriFutures Australia chair Kay Hull AM, with a welcome address by new HMFD chairman Nigel Scheetz.
The opening will include the presentation of the prestigious Henty Machine of the Year Award, this year celebrating its 45th anniversary, and an address by 2019 The Land Royal Easter Showgirl and HMFD volunteer, Stephanie Clancy.
Greater Hume Council will sponsor the Best Australian Designed and Manufactured Machine to be presented on Thursday, September 19. More than 800 national and international agricultural and commercial businesses will be eligible for the HMFD Exhibitor Awards at the 2019 field days.
At Country Lifestyle, the stage will be the focus of fashion parades featuring garments from exhibitors daily at 11am and 2.30pm. Designers with a flair for converting natural fibres into wearable art will compete for almost $5000 worth of prizes. The Henty Natural Fibre Fashion Awards showcase designs using at least 70 per cent natural fibres with the winners announced about 1pm Thursday.
The Farm Gate Produce Market will be a hive of activity with cooking demonstrations by chef Michelle Matusch, and featuring gourmet products direct from regional producers.
Gates are open from 8am to 5pm, with adult tickets $22, children 12 to 16 years $5, and children under 12 free when accompanied by an adult.
Visitors will be able to pre-purchase their tickets on-line for $20. Simply go to the visitor’s page on www.hmfd.com.au and click on Buy Tickets.