Snack Industry Issues in Europe Mirror Those in U.S.

Public policy issues facing the snack food industry in Europe are a “mirror image” of many of those confronting the industry in the United States, if discussions at the European Snack Association’s SNACKEX, Europe’s largest savory snacks and peanut trade event, are any indication.
“Concerns regarding childhood obesity and efforts to restrict high fat, sodium and sugar in schools were key topics at SNACKEX,” says Snack Food Association president and CEO Jim McCarthy, who attended the show in early June.
“Europeans are also concerned about advertising snacks to children, and the European Union countries are taking measures to restrict the amount and type of images children see related to food marketing,” McCarthy adds. “Clearly, these are issues and concerns that are prevalent in Europe, just as they are here at home.”
More than 1,000 attendees traveled to Barcelona, Spain, June 3-5 to participate in the SNACKEX, including a number of SFA members, many of whom also exhibited at the show. Representing the SFA along with McCarthy were Tom Dempsey, SFA chairman and executive vice president of sales and marketing, Utz Quality Foods, Inc.; and Liz Wells, SFA director of meetings.
McCarthy and Dempsey visited other SFA members in the region, including Liven S.A., Barcelona, an SFA international business member, while Wells staffed an SFA booth on the show floor, explaining to visitors the many programs, products and services provided by the association.