With the Barbados Agricultural Society (BAS) putting the finishing touches on its annual Agrofest review, officials there are reporting that this year’s event has been a resounding success.
Coordinator, Thedore Fraser, cited the 2012 national exhibition "as one of, if not the best ever"; with preliminary counts indicating that the event could surpass the record 60,000 patrons it had set previously.
Moreover, Agrofest 2012 saw an increase in the number of exhibitors taking part – some 350 compared to 300 last year, as well as the addition of several more sponsors.
Speaking to the Barbados Government Information Service, Mr. Fraser added that feedback from vendors and exhibitors was again very positive, with many generating good business during the three-day event.
"The vendors had a pretty good time this year. They were very concerned initially, especially those that moved over to the Weymouth ???B’ pasture because it was a new area and they did not know how the public would respond to it but it turned out well in the end. They are very keen on coming back again next year. The exhibitors had good interest from the patrons as well…For the ranges of products and services that were available, there was keen interest from members of the public. The business was quite good over the weekend," he pointed out.
Mr. Fraser revealed that several improvements were in the works for next year’s agricultural exhibition including better signage in and around Queen’s Park, and making the event more accessible for Persons with Disabilities.
"One of things we will have to consider going forward is the special groups, for instance the disabled community. They have indicated that there are issues in terms of parking at Agrofest as well as accessing the park. So, we have to see how best we can accommodate them going forward," he said.
The Coordinator pointed out that this year’s expansion efforts, that is, utilising the Weymouth ???B’ pasture, had turned out quite well and would be continued again in 2013.
"We tested it this year and it worked out very well, better than we had hoped and we will definitely be expanding the use of Weymouth ???B’ going forward," Mr. Fraser said.
Agrofest 2012 ran from February 24 to 26 and was held under the theme Renewable Energy: Powering Agriculture to Success.