New Zealand’s National Fieldays – billed as the largest agricultural event in the southern hemisphere – won’t be going ahead in June due to the covid-19 outbreak.
“As this is an unprecedented environment, we request the time between now and 31 March to present our loyal and longstanding exhibitors and stakeholders with potential options for preserving this event,” Peter Nation, chief executive officer of the New Zealand National Fieldays Society said in an email seen by BusinessDesk.
Nation said the decision to postpone the Fieldays event scheduled for June 10-13 came after Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said the government was banning all gatherings of more than 500 people and requiring the cancellation of events such as festivals, fairs, sporting and cultural events. Further guidance is still to come on smaller events as the week progresses.

Global event

Nation said that Fieldays is an event of “global significance” and has contributed more than $18.5 billion to the economy alone across the past 51 years of the event.
Last year’s event saw 128,747 visitors coming through the gates over the four days, generating $549 million in sales revenue, with $183 million going into the Waikato region alone. The event also brings in additional revenue and benefits through accommodation, restaurants, bars and retail trade.
The event is typically used as a barometer of the agricultural sector equipment and vehicle sales a key component of the event. And UDC Finance - the specialist commercial lender currently for sale - has often pointed at Fieldays to indicate the outlook for continuing sales. 
There were a total of 1,067 exhibitors from 11 different countries on 1,559 sites.
The event includes a raft of popular attractions including the Innovation Awards, the tractor pull, where contestants battle it out in three different classes, fencing competitions and "Fieldays Rural Catch" where competitors from around New Zealand and Australia have had the opportunity to test their skills both on and off the farm.