MOULTRIE — Exhibitors at Sunbelt Agricultural Exposition described first-day traffic about average.

The list of people who did not attend Tuesday apparently included Colquitt County farmers who were eager to get back to harvesting peanuts and cotton after last week’s torrential rainfall.

“I’d say it’s very good,” Richard McRae, a sales representative for Birmingham, Ala.-based Fuller Supply Co. Inc.

By early afternoon Tuesday the company already had made some sales, McRae said.

Fuller’s line includes cattle-handling equipment and supplies, electric fencing, and chutes for horse roping.

“It’s been better,” McRae said of customer traffic. “It’s maybe not as bad as some segments of the economy. It is probably going to be average. It’s not going to be one of the top years. We’ve sold some equipment.”

Although business may not be as brisk as in previous years, McRae said Expo is an important event for the company.

“This is a wonderful venue we have to display and merchandise equipment, make new contacts and see new faces,” he said. “We look forward to it every hear.

Ron Parrish, marketing manager for KIOTI tractors, Tuesday morning was brisk although the afternoon slowed down as is usually the case.

“I think we had some good interest,” he said. “This show has always had some good traffic.”

Potential customers from the local area stopped by the company’s display as well as some from Alabama, Kentucky, North Carolina and even some from outside the United States, Parrish said.

“Our dealers have made some good contacts from today’s show, which is very encouraging in these economic times. I think people are beginning to feel a little more conformable with their economic resources.”

At another tractor display, Camden County resident Jason Carter said he was looking but not interested in purchasing anything at this time.

Carter and other family members have some forest land used for hunting and were window shopping small tractors to use on that land.

“It’s really nice here because you see a lot of products you don’t even know existed,” Carter said. “You learn a lot when you come, there’s different distributors every year.”

For 2009, 1,184 exhibitors are at Expo, show Executive Director Chip Blalock said.

“That’s down a little but, but in this economy we feel that’s a blessing,” he said. “We’ve had beautiful weather, big crowds.”

The first day attendance was about 27,000, which Blalock said is up from last year’s opening day total of 25,000. This year’s figures are preliminary, he said.

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