SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois Department of Agriculture (IDOA) held its annual grain tour on October 19th. The grain tour, which traditionally takes place in-person was virtual for the second year in a row due to the pandemic.
Despite the challenges that come with a virtual tour, 143 participants from five Latin American countries attended. This year’s tour generated projected sales of over $12.4 million, an increase of more than $4 million from last years projected sales of $7.8 million.
“The grain tour continues showcasing all that Illinois agriculture has to offer, even if it is virtually,” said IDOA Director, Jerry Costello II. “While we can’t wait for the day we can return to in-person tours, virtual tours have opened the door for more participants to experience what Illinois ag is all about.”
“Having one year under our belts of the virtual tour really helped when it came to planning for 2021,” said IDOA Bureau Chief of Marketing, Jackie Sambursky. “We were able to put together some amazing presentations to make the attendees feel like they were onsite with us and I think that shows in the numbers.”
The grain tour, which gives Illinois farmers, producers and retailers the opportunity to showcase their world-class facilities included participants from Mexico, Ecuador, El Salvador, Peru and the Dominican Republic. Illinois groups and companies that participated in this year’s tour included, Seedburro, GSI, Clarkson Grain, Marquis Energy, Illinois Soybean Association and the Illinois Corn Marketing Board.