Expo 1

(MARK CARTER PHOTO/PURDUE UNIVERSITY)

An aerial view of the Fair Oaks Farms campus during the 2019 North American Manure Expo.

FAIR OAKS — It is estimated that somewhere around 1,100 people attended the North American Manure Expo Event, hosted Wednesday and Thursday at Fair Oaks Farms.

Aside from the larger technology demonstrations, attendees took part in a large trade show which gave various company vendors the opportunity to demonstrate their manure-handling products.

One of those vendors was Cornell Pump Co., based in Portland, Ore., which was showing off its latest design for an efficient manure pump.

“(It’s) one of the newer, all-hard-iron manure pump lines,” said Lindsey Murphy, Cornell’s ag sales applications engineer. “That’s the way we want to go if you’re pumping manure with sand or abrasive stuff like that. If you’re just using cast-iron or ductile, it’s not as hard.”

Cornell’s agricultural market manager, Bob Jansen, said adjustable seals on the pump’s design have helped it resist the potential wear and tear that comes with handling abrasive materials.

“It’s a good long-lasting low-wear — and adjustable for wear — type of design,” he said. “We haven’t made some models for a little while. This is a newer model. We have a series of these pumps starting at, I think, 2-inch size up to 8-inch size. As these guys change their designs, we kind of tweak our models every now and then to fit what they’re after.”

Jansen said that adjustable style is the most popular style the company now sells.

“If a person isn’t handling abrasive stuff, we still sell our standard product, which is less expensive, if they don’t need that,” he said.

Jansen recalled how one seller said he’d had a customer using it for four years without buying any replacement parts on it, still using the original mechanical seal.

The trade show was well-attended, in addition to the expo as a whole.

“It was a little more busy yesterday, after all the demos got done,” Murphy said Thursday. “But yeah, we had a good turnout.”

Jansen agreed.

“It’s a pretty good show for us,” he said. “These are our targeted accounts, all the custom-pumpers especially, or the larger dairies or hog producers that do their own manure-handling. It’s a very nice targeted show for us.”

Newton County Extension Educator Andrew Martin said the five buses rotated visitors to the expo’s different sites on a regular basis, with more than 20 education opportunities, as well as farm tours.

“One was Rose Acres, as well as BioTown (White County),” he said of the area farms visited.

The most popular aspect of the expo, arguably, were the live demonstrations in area fields.

“A lot of farmers and vendors like going to head-to-head competition, actually showing their machines working,” Martin said.