The 29th FeHoVa exhibition was a success

Significantly higher visitor numbers, a range of international exhibitors and a great atmosphere were all hallmarks of the 29th Fishing, Hunting and Arms International Exhibition. At the greatest gathering of the hunters, anglers and nature-lovers of the region, over 200 exhibitors presented their latest novelties while visitors had the chance to attend numerous lectures at the HUNGEXPO Budapest Congress and Exhibition Center.

Over 38 thousand visitors attended the four days of the 29th Fishing, Hunting and Arms International Exhibition (FeHoVa) at the HUNGEXPO Budapest Congress and Exhibition Center. This far surpassed last year’s visitor numbers; it seems that the society of hunters and anglers has returned to its previous level of operations after the more than two year-long pandemic period. Exhibitors attended the event from a range of different countries, including Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, South Africa, Poland, Namibia, Italy, Pakistan and Slovakia. There were a great number of foreign visitors at the event – this was partly due to the 10th anniversary FeHoVa-MEOESZ International Winterdogshow (CAC, CACIB) hosted concurrently with FeHoVa. This year, FeHoVa events took place in four separate pavilions.

At the opening ceremony, Gábor Ganczer, CEO of Hungexpo stressed that FeHoVa has underwent enormous changes over its three decade-long history. “It’s important to appreciate how long we have come as well as consider the direction we’re headed in and all the changes this requires!” said the Chief Executive Officer. He added that FeHoVa was one of the key milestones for Hungexpo and that “we will continue working to make sure this key gathering of the Carpathian Basin is hosted at a site worthy of its status.”

In his welcoming words, Deputy Prime Minister Zsolt Semjén mentioned the laws on arms and hunting as two of the most important issues of the hunting community. The arms law is realistic and reasonable, while the Hungarian law on hunting is the best in the world, he added.

Minister of Agriculture István Nagy stressed that the conservation of Earth’s biodiversity is of the utmost importance. Apart from providing for the protection of endangered species, this also includes the management of species that can be hunted. The wildlife management sector has faced a number of challenges, including the coronavirus pandemic, the Russian-Ukrainian conflict as well as the negative impact of EU sanctions. The decrease in income from foreign hunters, the weakening of the game meat market, the loss in revenue due to African swine fever and last year’s extreme drought have all impeded the sector, he added.

Attractions – Tremendous Interest

For yet another year, hunters and nature-lovers alike had the chance to attend numerous professional and general audience events at HUNGEXPO’s largest Pavilion A, including trophy demonstrations and trophy evaluations, roundtable discussions, screenings and travelogues. The collection of Hungarian big game trophies from the hunting seasons of 2020-2022 attracted a large number of visitors, along with the Nadler Trophy Review, the collection of the works of graphic designer András Szunyoghy entitled “Anatomical Studies of Wild Animals” as well as the “Wildlife in Action” diorama.

The charity auction hosted for the first time at FeHoVa also proved to be highly successful. Béla Hidvégi auctioned off his personal belongings – all of which were sold at the exhibition. All proceeds from the auction support the wildlife protection and educational programmes of Vadásztrófea Alapítvány (Hunting Trophy Foundation).

Traditionally hosted at the FeHoVa exhibition, the 11th FeHoVa Cup International Troating Competition attracted less competitors than usual, yet the competition was still a big success.

Anglers and those interested in aquatic wildlife could choose from a wide range of attractions. As customary, demonstrations were hosted in two pools this year: the baitboat tests and the so-called “lure presentations” attracted a large number of attendees. Visitors could admire a wide range of freshwater fish in realistic surroundings similar to their natural habitats in the over 22 thousand litre giant aquarium.  

The angler stage hosted a number of famous Hungarian recreational anglers sharing their experiences, including Péter Bakó, Bálint Horváth, Kristóf Raffer and Viktor Veegh. Visitors also had the chance to attend a discussion with two-time world champion Bence Szabó entitled Defending the Title at the FreeStyle Method Feeder World Championship.

The 10th anniversary FeHoVa-MEOESZ International Dog Show (CAC, CACIB) took place concurrently with FeHoVa in two pavilions, hosting the competition of thousands of dogs and their owners from 20 different countries.

This year, FeHoVa also had the opportunity to host a competition organised by Suzuki: visitors had the possibility of entering two competitions at the brand’s stand. Hunters and anglers interested in purchasing SUVs as well as the families of visitors had the chance to win two main prizes – a week-long test drive with the Suzuki Jimny or S-CROSS models.