Last week I had the opportunity to attend the 2017 SIMA Agribusiness Show in Paris and observe some of the global trends shaping the future of the agricultural market.

With more than 1,700 companies from more than 40 different countries in attendance, there was no shortage of innovation on display. Here are a few of the highlights from this year’s show.

The theme of the 2017 show was “Being a Farmer in 10 Years” and there was clear emphasis on forecasting what the future of farming may look like, both from a machinery and technology standpoint.

Several companies showcased remote control robotic vehicles designed to perform repetitive field tasks in a variety of cropping systems. Though each was unique in its concept, the robots shared similar designs in that each was lightweight, mobile and versatile. It will be interesting to see if more of these companies emerge both in Europe and North America in the coming years.



Another conceptual design that debuted at SIMA was John Deere’s electric tractor. The Sustainable Energy Supply for Agricultural Machinery, or SESAM model, is the ag industry’s first fully battery-powered tractor.

The tractor frame is based on the manufacturer’s 6R series. The battery pack retains a charge for 4 hours, is designed to last for 3,100 charging cycles and has a maximum output of 400 horsepower. According to Deere representatives at the SIMA show, the prototype tractor is at least 4-5 years away from commercial production.