Sponsored by the National Confectioners Association (NCA), the 2013 Sweets & Snacks Expo hosted a sold out show at Chicago’s McCormick Place to an audience of more than 15,000 qualified industry professionals. The expo, which was held May 21-23, is billed as the confectionery and snack industry’s most successful, world-class event.
“For the fourth year in a row, the expo demonstrated significant growth in all areas,” says NCA president Larry Graham. “Our 10% increase in overall expo registration is an accomplishment we relish. In a challenging economy, it is apparent by the continued growth that our event provides vital tools, insights, innovations and resources that the industry values.”
This year, 12% of expo visitors traveled from outside of the U.S. The show experienced double-digit international participation with more than 90 countries attending.
In addition, more than 6,000 candy and snack trade customers registered to attend, representing key distribution channels like grocery, convenience and mass as well as niche and specialty outlets. The expo is the only venue that represents all of the major U.S. distribution channels of candy and snack products in one location.
Highlights from 2013 Sweets & Snacks Expo included:
- The Shopper Solutions Theater, a first-time offering that enables visitors to learn about proven merchandising displays in the Gallery of Success and attend one of many Learning Lab sessions presented by the merchandising industry’s top experts.
- The Most Innovative New Product Awards showcase.
- Keynote sessions featuring well-known names such as Duke University’s baseball coach Mike “Coach K” Krzyzewski, Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist George Will, Leon Nicholas of Kantar Retail and Dina Howell, worldwide CEO of Saatchi & Saatchi X.
- The Gourmet Marketplace with an enhanced “Taste of Gourmet” area showcasing artisans conducting upscale pairings and demonstrations throughout the show.
- Innovation Alley, an area featuring candy- and snack-related startup companies.
- A park-like concourse with trees, music and market shops, including a fashion kiosk with custom-made dresses from iconic candy wrappers (below) and several candy- and snack-themed jewelry and accessory stores.
“The Expo is a proven destination that 96% of past retailers surveyed recognize as a solid business value,” Graham concludes. “They have told us that it is the most efficient one-stop destination they need each year to keep on top of the trends and innovations. We promise the industry to continue to over-deliver in 2014 on the entire expo experience that has led to a four year growth track record.”
Individuals interested in checking out the 2013 Sweets & Snacks Expo, including photos, videos, Facebook, LinkedIn andTwitter posts, can do so by downloading the Expo App at www.sweetsandsnacks.com.
The 2014 Sweets & Snacks Expo will be held May 20-22 at Chicago’s McCormick Place. Even though the 2014 show floor has increased, it is already more than 85% sold out. For more information or to reserve a space, contact NCA at firstname.lastname@example.org or 202-534-1440.