It’s already time to start thinking about the 2014 Sweets & Snacks Expo and the show is expected to be better than ever!

With an all-new European Confectionery Pavilion, an upgraded mobile app, more space for exhibitors, and speakers from Zappos, ESPN and NBC, the annual show is sure to be sweet. NCA Expo Logo

Registration is now open for the 2014 Sweets & Snacks Expo, which is slated for May 20-22, 2014, at Chicago’s McCormick Place.

Sponsored by the National Confectioners Association, the 2014 Expo is poised to be the most successful in the event’s 18-year history with a jam-packed show floor already boasting a double-digit wait list of companies ready to exhibit.

An improved pre-show planning app and cache of well-known speakers highlight the opening of registration for the confectionery and snack industry’s premier event. The top notch keynote speakers are included as part of a modest Expo registration fee. They include:

  • Tony Hsieh, ceo and founder of, will reveal successful strategies to excel in customer service.
  • Jeremy Schaap, ESPN commentator, will discuss strategies behind motivation and how strong leaders are a key component to success in any setting — both on teams and in business.
  • Nancy Snyderman, NBC’s chief medical editor, will share her insights on health and wellness, particularly as it relates to balancing healthy lifestyles and enjoyment.

The 2013 Expo broke all previous records in volume of confectionery and snack products with more than 600 companies and an 8 percent increase in exhibitor participation. In 2014 the show will feature more square footage which has been expanded to incorporate more space in the center of the exhibit hall.

“We are committed to finding innovative ways to grow the Expo, including an emphasis on new confectionery and snack products, distinct exhibit space for organic, natural and gourmet products, highlighting international companies, and exploration of the latest trends in shopper marketing,” says NCA President Larry Graham. “We service all your confectionery and snack needs in one place.”

Experiencing double-digit international growth, the 2014 Expo will introduce the new European Confectionery Pavilion and welcome more than 100 international companies from nearly 25 countries.

“The global marketplace is growing at fast rate, and it’s essential that the Expo provide access to more product categories from more international companies,” says Tim Quinn, Expo chairman and vice president of trade development for Mars Chocolate North America.

This year the Expo’s popular mobile app also will be upgraded to improve effectiveness and usability.

New this year is a user-friendly desktop planner that allows attendees to schedule their entire trip before arriving in Chicago. And, the Expo’s Virtual Media Center, introduced in 2013, will return to make it even easier for exhibitors to post and socialize their news releases so that media and other show attendees can see what’s hot at the show.

The popular Gourmet Marketplace sold out in early January, housing 84 companies and providing access to hundreds of one-of-a-kind, upscale, natural and organic products. And the market continues to grow as more than one third of shoppers will pay more for premium or natural products.