National Ploughing Championships is open to Irish
businesses large and small, and entrepreneurs within the
agri-sector. It o ers them the opportunity to showcase
their pioneering innovations to over 150,000 visitors over
the three years of the National Ploughing Championships.
Judging for the awards will take place at the Arena
throughout the week, featuring categories such as
Best Agri-Technology Start-Up, Best Agri-Engineering
Established Company, Young Innovator of the Year, and
Best Agri-Environmental Enterprise.
The overall exhibiting winner of the Arena will be eligible to
win up to 15,000 and will be presented with the prize at a
formal awards ceremony during the The Ploughing.
This year's competition had over 100 entries with 60
shortlisted and invited to exhibit in the Innovation Arena.
Over 100 buyers from across the globe were invited by
Enterprise Ireland including for the first-time New Zealand.
Last year's winner was David Murphy, co-founder of Agri-
Spread, which was founded in 2006.
Agri-Spread is a family owned, agricultural machinery
manufacturer based in Ballyhaunis, Co Mayo. Over the
years, the company has developed an extensive range of
agricultural machinery. With over 50 years' experience, the
company operates from a purpose-built factory
which boasts the latest in cutting, bending, welding and
The company now brands its extensive range of agricultural
machinery under the Agri-Spread brand which now
includes Agri-Spread Australia, and Agri-Spread North
America. David was a guest of Enterprise Ireland on their
recent visit to New Zealand. Ireland might be a relatively
small agricultural producer globally but what we do in the
sector, we do extremely well. Ireland has one of the highest
standards of agricultural education in Europe. The country
has established a deserved reputation for innovation across
the entire agricultural value chain. Ireland also competes
with the very best globally in terms of food quality, with
extremely low rates of antibiotic usage, no hormone usage,
very high standards of animal welfare, and full traceability
from fork to farm. Enterprise Ireland's Project Manager
for the Innovation Arena, James Maloney, commented
that number of applications are like last year, with a trend
towards smart agriculture solutions: "The influence of the
IoT, sensor technology and Artificial Intelligence is really
starting to filter through in product development in all
facets of farming".
and Food Science
Research, Innovation and