The National Ploughing Championships generates an economic impact of €36 million per annum, according to a study carried out at the 2011 Championships by University College Dublin.
The results of the Economic Impact Study were revealed last week at the Annual General Meeting of the National Ploughing Association held in the Abbeyleix Manor Hotel, Laois.
The key findings indicated that visitors to the Championships spent just under €36.5 million during the three days of the event.
This spending resulted in a tax take of over €6.6 million for the National Exchequer.
Eighty per cent of the attendees at the event are not local, and the age profile is 37 per cent female, and 63 per cent male.
Machinery is the main attraction in the trade exhibition, while personal shopping accounted for over €7 million.
Trade purchases were in excess of €9.6 million.
The impact on the local economy was multifold, with hotels, B&B’s, public houses, food outlets and service stations in the area all stated that they experienced a dramatic increase in trade due to the championships.
Speaking at the AGM, Managing Director Anna May McHugh said: “This report highlights the huge economic positives that the event brings to the local community.
“The Association would have been aware that based on average annual attendances of 180,000 people, the spin off for local hospitality industry must be significant.
“We had no idea to what extent until now.
“This report highlights and confirms the positive impact the event has on the locality, not only from a commercial perspective, but also from a rural and social perspective.”
The National Ploughing Association (NPA) also launched the 2012 Trade Exhibition Pack at the AGM, and confirmed that early indications of exhibitor interest are above previous years.
In addition to last year’s exhibitors, hundreds of new enquiries have been received for this year’s Championships in Heathpark, New Ross, Wexford from September 25 to 27.
Enquires regarding exhibiting at this year’s event should contact the NPA at 059-86-25125 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Accommodation enquiries should contact New Ross Tourist Information Office on 051-421857 or Experience New Ross at 087-3630540.
There were no officership changes and no new directors up for election at last week’s AGM.
This year’s Championships will be held at Heathpark, New Ross, Wexford from Tuesday to Thursday, September 25 to 27.
In total, over 700 acres of land will be needed to for the occasion.
The event will not only cater for all sectors of agricultural and rural life, but features something for just about every member of the community.