A test field of around 3,000 m2 at Macfrut 2024

From 8 to 10 May, two exhibition halls at the Rimini Expo Centre will showcase innovations in fruit growing, soilless production techniques, horticulture and mechanisation.

Dynamic Area

At Macfrut, the sector’s innovations will be on display in an area of around 3,000 square metres, divided into two halls: one dedicated to fruit growing (Hall C1 – Agri Field Solution) and the other to soilless production techniques, commercial and industrial horticulture, and mechanisation (Hall A1 – Machinery Solutions). ‘Both of these areas have been very successful so far, and allow visitors to see for themselves what they can put into practice on their own farm,’ says Luciano Trentini, an experienced agronomist who, for many years, has been coordinating the dynamic areas of the three-day trade fair Macfrut, to be held at the Rimini Expo Centre from 8 to 10 May 2024.

‘The Macfrut trade fair is a must-attend event that gives exhibitors the opportunity to present some of the most important innovations in the sector in specially equipped areas to qualified Italian and foreign visitors, who can find out about the latest trends in the fruit and vegetable sector,’ adds Trentini. ‘Due to the success of previous editions, the size of the dynamic areas will remain the same. This year we also want to offer visitors interested in production chains the opportunity to participate in an informative training course, so that they can broaden their knowledge base with a view to making fruit and vegetable production more modern, innovative, efficient and competitive.’

The dynamic areas will therefore serve as a learning ground: in fact, visitors will be able to take guided tours and talk to machinery and equipment manufacturers or even company technicians who will present their latest innovations and will have access to all the information they need to manage their crops properly.

Macfrut 2024 will be full of novelties. Three very important fruit species will be featured in the fruit growing field in Hall C1: table grapes, the star product of this year’s edition of the trade fair, pear trees, which have faced some setbacks in recent years, but are looking to make a comeback, and cherry trees, which offer new production opportunities thanks to innovative technologies.

In addition to the mentioned fruit species, different types of covering systems will be featured, which not only protect various fruit species against hail, but also positively influence plant physiology by using new materials to improve harvest quality. There will also be data collection systems and innovative irrigation systems, which are becoming more and more important in times of climate change, such as we are experiencing now.

The other dynamic area in Hall A1 will showcase the innovative aspects of field operations in the production chain. An interesting example is that of potatoes: although potato cultivation is widespread in Italy, the country is also a major importer of potatoes. Another supply chain is that of industrial tomatoes, of which Italy is the largest producer in Europe and plays a leading role in their processing. Potatoes and tomatoes are also of interest from an agricultural point of view for many developing countries, which want to learn more about European production standards by participating in Macfrut.

The area will also host fresh-cut (baby leaf) production systems with a focus on varietal innovation, sowing and harvesting. A large part of the hall will be dedicated to soilless cultivation techniques, in particular those used for strawberries, table grapes, ginger and blueberries. A range of instruments will also be on display in the field, including instruments for recording weather and climate data, innovative irrigation systems, photovoltaic-powered irrigation systems and frost protection systems. These latter issues are of great concern to all producing countries, large and small, due to climate change, rising temperatures and decreasing water availability, while demand for food increases. In both halls, dedicated forum areas will be made available for visitors who can take part in short, specialised focus sessions on topics of interest to the industry.