However, in addition to the show‘s traditional areas of interest, this year will see a number of new features which shouldn‘t be missed.

With CAP reform just weeks away, a major priority with many farmers is how to gain the knowledge and management skills necessary to innovate and grow their businesses.

Hence the introduction of Farm Options, Smithfield‘s new interactive business-to-business feature which takes centre stage at the show.

Sponsored by Lloyds TSB Agriculture, it has been created to offer visitors an array of opportunities for thinking beyond traditional farming methods.

The aim is to help farmers develop sustainable, profitable and successful farm ventures for the future by exploring the additional income stream opportunities offered by rural asset and financial management, the environment and conservation, leisure and tourism and added value food.

Another new area, Profitable Meat Production, features a rolling programme of presentations and demonstrations throughout each of the show’s four days.

There will be live demonstrations, video and other interactive presentation techniques, in addition to butchery displays and the national Festival of Meat Beef Ribs National Final and the Young Butcher of the Year Finals.

And on Level 2, look out for the popular FARMERS WEEKLY Farmer Forums .

This year the emphasis will be on more audience participation, with high profile speakers including Sir Don Curry, chairman of the Implementation group that oversees the delivery of the government’s Sustainable Farming and Food Strategy.

Key industry topics, such as CAP reform, biofuels and environmental legislation, will be debated and for the first time there is a Farmers‘ Question Time , with a line-up of front-line politicians and farmers‘ representatives.

Here‘s your big chance to question the people who help shape UK policy on food, farming and the countryside – and let them know what you think.

Enjoy your visit. I am confident you will find it valuable and worthwhile.
Bob Humphrey