Agri­bi­tion cel­e­brates strong at­ten­dance

Regina Leader-Post - - CITY + REGION -

Cana­dian West­ern Agri­bi­tion (CWA) or­ga­niz­ers are cel­e­brat­ing strong at­ten­dance this year with more than 126,000 vis­i­tors and up­wards of 1,000 in­ter­na­tional guests from 75 coun­tries.

“In a year that’s been tough on some farm­ers and pro­duc­ers, we’re grate­ful that so many peo­ple con­tinue to spend their time at Agri­bi­tion,” said CWA CEO Chris Lane in a news re­lease.

Lane said new pro­gram­ming in­clud­ing a mental health work­shop and a fo­cus on cannabis and en­trepreneur­ship is res­onat­ing with vis­i­tors, bring­ing peo­ple to the show that have never been be­fore.

More than 9,400 stu­dents and teach­ers took part in the CWA’S ed­u­ca­tion pro­gram and more than 24,000 peo­ple at­tended the pro-rodeo and full con­tact joust­ing events. The new Party on the Dirt cabaret saw a sold-out crowd of 1,100 peo­ple.

“Once again, Agri­bi­tion de­liv­ered on its mis­sion to be the premier mar­ket­place for Cana­dian agri­cul­tural prod­ucts,” said CWA Pres­i­dent Bruce Holmquist in a news re­lease.

“Not only did we see well over a thou­sand in­ter­na­tional guests and buy­ers, but many of them made pur­chases from places like Ar­gentina, Mex­ico, the United King­dom and Aus­tralia, which are all tar­get mar­kets for our trade pro­gram and ex­hibitors,” he said.

The show saw 1,126 in­ter­na­tional vis­i­tors from 75 coun­tries, 9,482 reg­is­tered par­tic­i­pants in the ed­u­ca­tion pro­gram, 468 trade show exhibits and a to­tal of 126,972 vis­i­tors.

To­tal at­ten­dance for tick­eted events came in at 25,523 and for free-ad­mis­sion and tick­ets for Armed Forces and first re­spon­ders to­talled 633.

Other high­lights in­cluded a panel dis­cus­sion on trade with for­mer premiers Brad Wall and Frank Mckenna, a $500,000 fund­ing an­nounce­ment from Min­istry of Agri­cul­ture to fur­ther de­velop in­ter­na­tional trade and a new men­tor­ship pro­gram aimed at young peo­ple in Saskatchewan agri­cul­ture. CWA’S fi­nan­cial de­tails will be re­leased at the an­nual gen­eral meet­ing set for April 11.

Last year’s fi­nan­cials show about $4.4 mil­lion in spend­ing — plus a one-time ex­pense of $1 mil­lion to help build the In­ter­na­tional Trade Cen­tre. But Agri­bi­tion brought in more than $4.6 mil­lion in revenue to post a small op­er­at­ing profit of $270,000.

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