With two weeks to go until Europe’s largest outdoor event kicks off, preparations in Ratheniska, Co Laois are seriously taking shape as this green field transforms into the bustling city that will become #Ploughing2022. There is also an extra buzz this year as Ireland will be hosting the 67th World Ploughing Contest.
World Ploughing Organization General Secretary Anna Marie McHugh said “It is a massive honour for Ireland to welcome international delegations and their supporters from 28 countries all around the globe. Where the very best plough men & women in the world will be battling it out to be crowned ‘World Champion’. International teams have been arriving for the past few weeks and it is fantastic to have some of these teams here with us today.”
Today, the national media were treated to an exciting preview of what to expect at this year’s National & World Ploughing Championships, as the event was officially launched on the site. The media and special guests were entertained by local performers from Laois while prize-winning animals, quality machines, horses and hounds were all on display.
Launching the event, NPA Managing Director Anna May McHugh said “The Championships not only provides a national stage for showcasing all things that are great about Ireland but also brings together people from all sectors of Irish society both rural and urban, to enjoy three days immersed in country living.
There is also serious international appeal with exhibitors, global buyers and visitors coming from far flung countries such as France, the USA, UK, Uganda, Germany, India, Poland, Ghana, Belgium, New Zealand, France, Saudi Arabia, Lativa and the Netherlands making ‘Ploughing’ the perfect opportunity to show the very best of Ireland’s food, farming & culture.”
There will be millions of euro worth of agricultural and plant machinery on display featuring an extensive range of cutting edge agricultural technology and equipment, with the opportunity to see these in action in the machinery demonstration area. The leading manufacturers and agents will be present with specialist sales advisors and technical experts available for free
Visitors can take the opportunity to admire the marvellous quality livestock on display and learn about livestock management, genetics, nutrition and healthcare. Sustainability is very much a key theme for #Ploughing2022. At this year at ‘Ploughing’ there will be numerous green initiatives, for example the NPA will be promoting the use of recyclable products, food waste will be converted into energy through an anaerobic digester and there will also be solar panelled lighting towers, cardboard compactors, litter fines and waste separation operations on-site.” Certa formally known as EMO Oil are providing the electricity for the event using HVO Hydrated Vegetable Oil (recycled cooking oil). Also, Bank of Ireland will be giving out native Irish Hedgerow Plants as part of their programme.
There is no doubt that the entrepreneurial spark is alive and well in Ireland with an unprecedented number of diverse and exciting businesses from every county in Ireland exhibiting at the “Local Enterprise Village”. Enterprise Ireland have a tremendous display planned in the Innovation Arena which will include the finalists for the Innovation Awards this year but also the winners from 2020/21 and there will be 130 international buyers in attendance which is great for business.
The ‘Ploughing’ is a haven for foodies, as all sectors of the food chain are represented from producer to retailer, artisan foods, craft beers, celebrity chefs, cookery competitions and much more.
In the national ploughing stakes a particularly strong programme has attracted entries from all around the country and Northern Ireland bringing the number preparing to plough in Laois to 311 for the 3 days.
All of the firm favourite attractions are set to return this year such as Fashion Shows, Meggers, Sheep Shearing, Hunt Chase, Fun Fair, Food Trail, Craft Demonstrations, Pony Games, Live Music and Dancing, Vintage Ploughing, Threshing, Loy Digging, Motor Show with celebrities and well known faces everywhere Ploughing 2022 is not to be missed.