World Dairy Expo is a great boon to the local economy — despite the recession.
Lisa Behnke is Marketing Manager at World Dairy Expo. She says considering the millions of dollars generated, the world’s largest dairy show is well worth the minor inconveniences some folks might encounter. “Fourteen million — $14-plus million is what the Greater Madison Convention and Visitors Bureau estimates people spend just on lodging and meals and their entertainment while they’re here in Madison for the show.” Behnke stresses the huge economic impact, “So I guess those of us that shake our fist at the delayed traffic during the week of World Dairy Expo should probably sit back a little bit and relax and smile and think what a great boon it is to our economy, too.”
That $14-million estimate is a conservative figure, Behnke says, based on exhibitors and attendees, and their hotel rooms and food. It doesn’t account for money spent at the malls, local shops or equipment at the show. Despite folks tightening their belts during this recession, Behnke says the weak economy wasn’t a negative factor in this year’s trade show.
Considering the gathering a great minds and ideas in the industry — people can’t afford not to be at the event. One might think, “This is a time when I need to be more efficient and more effective; and I need to be up to date on what we need to know in terms of anything having to do with animal husbandry and stewardship of the land. It’s all here. All those people are gathered in the same place for five days so you really can’t afford not to be here.”
More than 65,000 producers and industry enthusiasts from 90 countries were expected to attend the World Dairy Expo. The 44th annual event took place last week, at the Alliant Energy Center in Madison.