Ag's big show returns to Decatur


Visitors to the Farm Progress Show look at a John Deere combine Tuesday / CIFN photo.

DECATUR – The largest outdoor farm show returned Tuesday with the opening of the 2021 Farm Progress Show on the edge of Decatur.


Many ag companies showcased the latest and greatest equipment, technologies and other products. Versatile displayed its track tractor new for 2022 with many improvements over the previous generation.


“We’ve got more power and different hydraulics,” explained Adam Reid, vice president of sales and marketing for the company.


Farm Progress Show is the first show this tractor has been at as it was launched to dealers in June. Versatile also had several 2021 model tractors on display. They introduced a compact tractor line last year and also have a high-speed disk.


“It is designed to go in the neighborhood of 10 miles an hour,” said Reid.


Jenny Badding is market manager for digital technologies for John Deere. She was visiting with show attendees in the John Deere precision ag tent on the opening morning of the show. One of the company’s newest releases came last month surrounding the JD Link connectivity which is now free as long as the customer has compatible hardware on equipment.


“You don’t even have to worry about those USB sticks,” Badding said.


Many growers are transitioning to the mobile side of things. With JD Link connectivity, progress in the field can be monitored along with the location of equipment.


Also in the John Deere exhibit area was the X9 class 10 twin rotor combine which the company released more than a year ago. Capacity is the name of the game here as the machine is designed to bring in a lot of crops while pushing 16-row corn heads or 50-foot soybean platforms. It can harvest up to 7200 bushels per hour and quite a few are hitting the fields this fall.


Larry Gross from Chester, Illinois attended the show on Tuesday with his wife. He was busy looking over the big combine.


“It’s a little bit too big for where I live,” Gross joked.


Gross lives over three hours from Decatur in what he calls “hill country” with mostly cattle and hay. He was glad to see the Farm Progress Show was back.


The 2021 Farm Progress Show runs through Thursday at Progress City U.S.A. near Richland Community College in Decatur.

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