Uruguay’s management of the COVID-19 pandemic has been praised worldwide. With fewer than 2,000 cases and less than 50 deaths so far, the relatively small South American nation is the exception once again. Economic recovery has farming at its core: agriculture, livestock, forestry, agrifood in general, are all key to the country’s performance. That ExpoPrado, the country’s largest rural trade show, took place in the midst of an unprecedented global crisis, is a testimony to Uruguay’s science-based public health management, the strength of its institutions, the education of its people, and also a signal of the strength of the country’s most iconic sector. Trust was also key: trusting not just the government but each other more than ever before.
ExpoPrado, organised by Uruguay’s Rural Association (ARU), is difficult to describe to outsiders. On the one hand, it’s the country’s largest event. No other occasion gathers this many people from all backgrounds, social groups, ages, geographies and activities. It is a second-to-none consumer show, the perfect launch pad for a brand, the unmissable marketing opportunity, the hub of the annual sales efforts for many. It’s the place to be seen.
On the other hand, “el Prado” gathers the elite, the crème-de-la-crème of animal genetics in the country. It’s a cattle exhibition of some of the best breeders in the world. The focus is definitely on cattle (for agriculture, ExpoActiva in March might prove a better option) but it’s a gathering point for everyone in the sector. Not everyone can manage the 12 days of the show but all of us who work directly or indirectly in the sector, drop by at least for a day (four this year, in our case – check out #SunnySkyPrado2020 on twitter for -even more- photos!).