Ohio State will host its 60th Farm Science Review Tuesday-Thursday at the Molly Cullen Agricultural Center in London, Ohio, to introduce attendees to new farming techniques and learn from experts in the industry.
Nick Zachrich, FSR manager, said that when the event first started in 1963, it was a way for the agricultural industry to showcase its new technology, and it gave Ohio State an opportunity to showcase its research.
Originally there were about 100 exhibitors on 20 acres, Zachrich said, and now there are hundreds of exhibitors on 90 acres. More than 100,000 people are expected to attend, he said.
According to the Farm Science Review websitethis year’s event will feature more than 600 commercial exhibitors from across North America and will showcase millions of dollars worth of machinery.
In addition to exhibitors from the agricultural industry, many Ohio outreach agencies — the College of Food, Agricultural and Environmental Sciences’ community outreach units — and departments have their own outreach and recruiting showcases, Zachrich said.
Zachrich said the farm show was one of only a handful in the U.S. and the only one of its kind.
“No other program does what we do as a university of education in one place, again and again, like we do here,” Zachrich said.
Zachrich says the FSR is a great resource for students looking for potential careers. He said many of the companies attending the event were hiring, looking for young people with expertise, even if they lacked farming experience.
“In many cases now, we need people with high-tech jobs in computer science, engineering, and business,” Zachrich said. “They don’t necessarily need agricultural knowledge that they can train and learn – but we just need very talented people in the industry.”
Zachrich said Wednesday there is a career exploration fair where students and mid-career professionals can connect with 20 leading companies in the agriculture industry.
Tim Sullivan, a third-year agricultural systems management major, said he went to FSR since he was a child, so it’s great to be involved in the event now as a student because it provides the opportunity to gain experience in large-scale planning.
“It really allows students to get hands-on experience with event planning and hands-on experience presenting world-class programming,” Sullivan said.
Zachrich said this year’s FSR will allow attendees to see how far agricultural technology has come in a short period of time.
“We can even look at the technology over the past five to ten years, see how much we’ve advanced and developed, and think about how much will be further improved and developed over the next five to ten years,” Zachrich said.
Sullivan said the FSR is a great opportunity for people to learn more about how their food is grown.
“I think there’s a lot to learn, and I think it’s an industry that people should be excited about because that’s where their food comes from,” Sullivan said.