2023 Argentina Ag Tour – August

Once again, Spraytec Australia had the privilege of showcasing its global presence to our valued clientele. During early August of this year, we rewarded a select group of customers and agronomists with a trip to Argentina – an opportunity made possible by the remarkable sales growth experienced across the country in the 2022/23 seasons. As a testament to Spraytec’s expanding footprint, this all-inclusive tour targeted one of our many international branches, honing in on Spraytec’s product use patterns overseas, and acquiring relevant information to apply to our cropping systems back in Australia.

The tour encompassed a wide range of activities, including immersive demonstrations at the Spraytec Argentina and brand new Spraytec Global office, as well as a comprehensive visit of the revamped production facility. Participants also had the opportunity to attend Argentina’s largest agricultural conference, partake in informative farm visits, and experience firsthand multiple independent trials that were assessing Spraytec solutions. Additionally, we arranged tours of prominent local companies, providing valuable insights into Argentina’s agricultural practices and the industry’s operation. Of course, no visit to Argentina would be complete without savouring many authentic Argentine barbecues!

The trip brought together clients from diverse regions across Australia, with a heavy Western Australian presence complimented by key Northern and Southern New South Wales exposure. Inviting both growers and agronomists created a highly dynamic group, with those contacted being chosen according to select criteria involving product purchased, and commitment shown to our Spraytec brand. The diversity ensured that there was always something new and enriching to discuss throughout our time together.

All smiles prior to departure from Sydney International Airport.

Exploring Buenos Aires

After enduring a gruelling 30+ hour journey, the team touched down in Buenos Aires, where we eagerly came together for a weekend filled with exploration and cultural immersion. We kicked off our adventure with a visit to the iconic La Boca suburbs, followed by a guided tour of Buenos Aires and a captivating traditional Tango dance show. These experiences offered the group a delightful introduction to the vibrant culture of Argentina before they embarked on their agricultural endeavours. The enjoyable weekend served as a vital opportunity for the team to strengthen their bonds, setting the stage for a successful trip ahead!

Enjoying what Buenos Aires has to offer.

Spraytec HQ and production facility

Our next destination was Rosario; a city renowned as the birthplace of Argentina’s flag and the hometown of Lionel Messi. This urban hub boasts a prominent river port and serves as a pivotal centre for Argentina’s agriculture. Most importantly, it serves as the primary base for Spraytec Argentina.

Upon our arrival to Spraytec Argentina’s head office, Agustin Bianchini, an independent agronomist affiliated with Okandu and an advisor to Spraytec, warmly welcomed our group. Agustin delivered an informative presentation, offering a comprehensive overview of Spraytec’s product portfolio and sharing insights into their extensive trial work in Argentina. He addressed inquiries, providing clarity on any challenging questions we posed. Eager to expand our knowledge, Agustin delved into the details of Spraytec Australia’s new seed treatment and in-crop phytostimulant products, which have demonstrated remarkable performance both domestically and internationally. He also expanded on our market leading products, Fulltec® and Fulltec Max®

Our visit culminated with a presentation by Spraytec’s Global Director, Pablo Lafuente, and chemist Florencia Fernandez. During their presentation, Florencia showcased the benefits of Optimix® as both a preventive and corrective pesticidal compatibiliser in situations involving incompatible tank mixtures, such as fomesafen and glyphosate. The visit proved exceptionally valuable for the group, as it deepened the understanding of Spraytec’s product offerings and bolstered confidence in incorporating Spraytec products year-round.

Meeting at Spraytec Argentina’s head office in Rosario with an informative presentation from independent agronomist and Spraytec advisor, Agustin Bianchini (far-left).

With newfound product knowledge and much anticipation, an ensuing tour of Spraytec Argentina’s production facility generated much chatter amongst the group. With a brand-new facility only opening recently, annual production will increase from 1.5 million litres to between 5.5 – 8 million litres. A sizable upgrade indicative of the Argentinean branch’s continued development and desire to sustain demand long into the future. Not only was a glimpse into the product development processes provided, but the group was further exposed to packaging, logistics, and chemistry formulation. An exciting time for all, as group members came to terms with the vast potential Spraytec has back in Australia.

Getting a grasp into the production size and scale of Spraytec solutions.

Rosario immersion, plus more

Complementing these constructive Spraytec facility visits, the group had the chance to experience several other aspects of Argentinian agriculture. This included a visit to local farms, where conversations with growers provided an introduction to the region’s farming systems. The growers elaborated on what they grow, and how they have incorporated Spraytec products into their system – as well as the struggles of recent seasons experienced across Argentina. It was fascinating to hear and discuss, albeit through broken translation, the similarities and differences between Argentine and Australian growers.

As further industry exposure, we had the opportunity to tour the Louis Dreyfus Company (LDC) grain processing plant and port. This visit gave us a comprehensive overview of Argentinian agricultural processes, including grain grading and export procedures, which are integral to the region’s agricultural industry, being a port city. A visit to the Caiman Sprayer Factory ensured an insight like no other, as we observed the complete manufacturing process of a sprayer, from nuts and bolts, welding and cutting, cleaning and painting, until eventually, a fully functioning machine was produced. The addition of carbon fibre spray booms certainly caught the eye of the growers. Following on from this, we were awarded the opportunity to visit Agricultores Federados Argentinos (AFA), one of the leading Argentinian agricultural co-operative retail groups, who have worked with Spraytec closely to provide growers with the most effective spray applications across the year. It was fascinating to observe the ins and outs of agribusiness management from an Argentina perspective.

Up close and personal with sprayers fresh out of production at the Caiman Sprayer Factory.

Coinciding with our time in Rosario, we shared many an opportunity to view several Spraytec trials. Conducted with reputable independent agronomy groups, the trials gave insights into a range of different products, primarily TOPSeed® and Packseed® – Spraytec’s dedicated seed treatment partners. This was largely due to the timing the season, with post-em applications only just beginning. It was highly appreciated to be able to visually assess the benefits of using our products across various cropping systems, right there in the paddock. New ideas, combinations and targets were discussed in relation to trial development in Australia, as the group shared their opinions with our team on what they’d like to see explored.

The prestigious AAPRESID Congress

The opportunity to visit AAPRESID congress was certainly a highlight of the tour. AAPRESID is a grower backed non-profit organisation promoting no-till farming practices. The annual conference provides a facility for leading Argentinian and international professionals to present their findings and ideas. It also provides the opportunity for companies to present their products to the professionals attending. Within the main trade showroom, Spraytec had an eye-catching stand in the midst of other highly reputable chemical companies. This promoted much conversation and gave the attendees insight into the scale and credibility of Spraytec in Argentina. Overall, some fantastic presentations on weed control, carbon sequestration and cover crops, as well as many other presentations across the days – which were assisted with live translators!

Attending the AAPRESID Congress with Spraytec Argentina playing host to us and our clients.

Our appreciation and thanks!

As a company, these tours are provided to our clients as a way showing appreciation for adopting our products within their systems. Each activity is thought out thoroughly to immerse the client in Argentinian agriculture, and develop a deeper understanding of Spraytec and our products. It was fantastic to see the group bond over the 10 days, sharing ideas and experiences. We extend our gratitude to the Spraytec Argentina branch for hosting us, and look forward to another tour next year.

Please follow us on our socials or get in touch with your local retailer to ensure you don’t miss out on the next tour opportunity!