This year's SPACE is the 25th anniversary event, to be held from 13 to 16 September at the Rennes Exhibition Centre. 25 years of top business and information opportunities for the livestock industry.
After an initial period of continuous growth (exhibitors, visitors, the international dimension), over the last ten years SPACE has successfully maintained a top level offer in both quantitative and qualitative terms, confirming its position as one of the world's leading livestock trade shows, making full use of the facilities at the Rennes Exhibition Centre.
This 25th SPACE will confirm this position once again.
In comparison with the very difficult trade in 2009 and 2010, the situation in the livestock industry has eased somewhat, particularly in the dairy industry which has seen a slight increase in price.
Pig prices have also recovered, but this rise has been more than made up for by the increased cost of animal feed brought by very high cereal prices. This escalation in feed costs is also directly impacting other areas of meat production, particularly poultry, where the current market is largely export driven.
A further area of concern is the developing drought which is placing a great many farms at risk.
Despite these problems, the 25th SPACE is set to be another top quality event.
Exhibitor registrations are coming in fast: almost 1,100 exhibitors as at 9 May, a clear increase (+50 exhibitors and over 6,000 m² of stand area requested) compared with the same time last year. These registrations are at the same record levels achieved in 2009.
Demand is particularly high for equipment used in the dairy industry (milking machinery, cattle handling, forage harvesting and distribution, etc). Order books continue to be healthy in the poultry and pig sectors, and in agri-energy, despite the severe slowdown experienced by manufacturers and suppliers of solar energy, for whom SPACE is set to mark an important step in recovering their markets.
Among the 1,080 exhibitor registrations, we have noted the expected attendance of 300 international companies, or 28% of the total, and 159 first-time exhibitors, 15% of the total.
So SPACE is maintaining its ability to attract new companies (15% of applications) whilst sustaining the support of the previous year's exhibitors.
These 2010 exhibitors expressed their high levels of satisfaction with last year's SPACE in the official survey, with 92% describing the Show as high quality and 90% stating the it had enabled them to make useful business contacts, notably as regards potential new customers (83%).
Visitors also expressed a high degree of satisfaction, with average scores of 7.3/10 from French visitors and 8.3/10 from foreign visitors. SPACE is considered a high quality Show by 97% of French visitors and 99% of foreign visitors.
The 25th SPACE will once again be offering plenty of opportunities for meetings and contacts between exhibitors representing the full range of equipment, products and services for all livestock species and trade visitors interested in developing and maintaining their business, particularly livestock farmers (60% of visitors in 2010) looking to optimise and modernise the operation of their holdings.
Farmers will be particularly interested in the new concepts presented by exhibitors as part of the INNOV'SPACE project, which will be promoting the innovations submitted.
Visitor numbers are set once more to top 100,000 and the international profile is again very noticeable. As a result of the considerable resources SPACE invests abroad with the support of the Brittany Regional Council, a large number of delegations from every continent have already registered.
Our international visitors will be able to choose from an extensive menu of services offered by our different partners: ADEPTA, Bretagne International, UBI-France, CCI International and Enterprise Europe Network.
There will be plenty of opportunities for meetings and contacts at the range of events organised for the 25th SPACE:
- The Research and Development Platform, which will be highlighting the value of Ecologically Intensive Agriculture.
- The wide range of symposia and conferences already in place and which will once again be making SPACE the focus for information sharing at every level. This year a number of symposia of international standing will be held for the first time, notably the International Raw Materials Forum, under the aegis of AFAB (Association des Fabricants d'Aliments du Bétail - Association of Animal Feed Compounders).
- A new "job dating" service will offer speed meetings providing employment opportunities in the livestock industry, bringing together exhibitors and visitors in search of a new job.
- The livestock competitions and presentations will again confirm SPACE's status as one of the world's top livestock shows, with the Charolais Festival a particular highlight this year.
So there are plenty of good reasons for all livestock industry professionals to come to SPACE in mid-September. This was the firm ambition of the organisers behind the first SPACE in 1987, as shown in the poster for that inaugural event, with all the animals converging on Rennes.
This ambition is as strong as ever, which is why we are repeating the same image on the poster for the 25th SPACE, though now with greater emphasis on the international dimension.