Some major machinery manufacturers are evidently availing of the Farm Tractor and Machinery Trade Association’s (FTMTA’s) facilities near Naas, Co. Kildare.

The association’s so-called Farm Machinery Industry Training Centre (FMITC) is hosting Valtra next week, for example – for training on its new ‘SmartTouch’ in-cab tractor control system.

Also Read: Pics: Valtra tractor tour lands here in Ireland

According to Valtra, SmartTouch allows the operator to control almost everything in the tractor – with the “exception of the driver’s seat and air-conditioning”.

A Valtra tractor (equipped with ‘SmartTouch’) in the FMITC (Co. Kildare) ahead of next week’s training programme

Tractors have been delivered to the FMITC, ahead of next week’s training programme.

Claas has also recently availed of the FTMTA’s facilities; it ran a training programme for operators of its latest Jaguar self-propelled forage harvesters earlier this month.

Equipment being readied for a training programme earlier this month at the FMITC

A latest-generation Claas Jaguar forager, with a pair of front-end attachments, inside the FTMTA’s training centre in Co. Kildare

Midlands event next month

Meanwhile, tickets are available online for this year’s FTMTA Grass & Muck event – to be held at Gurteen College near Birr on Thursday, May 17.

The FTMTA says that this year’s event will be the largest ever; it is describing it as “the flagship event for the Irish farm machinery industry in 2018″.

The association says that 11,500 visitors attended the 2016 event; it hopes to see that figure exceeded this year.

A spokesperson said recently: “The focus at FTMTA Grass & Muck is very much on working machinery, with ongoing demonstrations throughout the day in the grass harvesting, re-seeding, silage pit, slurry spreading and farmyard manure spreading areas.”

Big manufacturers have already been busy announcing what equipment they’re planning to bring to the event; expect to see, for example, the latest self-propelled forage harvesters right down to the smallest tedders – and everything silage-related in between.

Tickets for the upcoming event are available by clicking on this link.