The World Ag Expo

By Sean Doherty

I just spent a day at the Tulare Farm Show, and boy am I tired! The World Ag Expo, as it’s known, is the largest agriculture exposition in the world. With over 1,500 exhibitors and 100,000 attendees in the three days of the show, it is the best place to see the latest and greatest in our ag industry. I try to make it to Tulare at least once every two or three years to keep up on the latest developments that could benefit our farm, as well as visit with friends I only seem to see at the show.

My two friends and I left Colusa County at 4:30am to make the 5-hour drive to the show. After a quick stop in Merced for some breakfast we battled fog and traffic most of the way down. After spending a half hour waiting to park and $15 for the entry ticket we got inside the fence. I don’t know how many acres it covers but we ended up walking six miles, didn’t go in any halls or the dairy section, and still only saw about 40 percent of the show! The variety of machinery and exhibitors from all over the world still amazes me. I don’t know how to begin to describe what we saw there. There are exhibitors for every kind of farmer there, irrigation and pump companies, tree and grape nurseries, milking machines, and seed cleaners. 

We spent most of the day learning about the new pertinent technology being offered and got to enjoy a Tri Tip sandwich for lunch. Our tour of the show was frequently interrupted every time we happened to bump into friends made over the years. As the afternoon wore on and we had taken in what we most wanted to see, we capped it off with a cold beer with these old friends. Talking about the days passed in college, sharing photos of children, and this year some serious water talk. After a beer we said our goodbyes and gave our best wishes for the upcoming season we hit the road for the long drive home. A quick stop for some gas, and a longer stop for dinner at the Santa Fe Basque Restaurant in Fresno for dinner and home by midnight. A long day but well worth the effort.

Sean Doherty is a 3rd generation rice farmer living out his dream, being a rice farmer in Dunnigan.

He farms in Yolo, Colusa, and Sutter Counties with his wife Melissa, and three kids, Hannah, Gus, and Mary. He enjoys being in the fields, watching the seasons, and sharing it with his family.