Trade show attracting high vendor interest

11/18/2013 01:31:00 PM
Doug Ohlemeier

The “city that never sleeps” is again attracting high interest for exhibitors at the New York Produce Show.

Many companies want to visit with Northeast retail buyers, said John McAleavey, executive director of the Eastern Produce Council.

The Short Hills, N.J.-based council co-sponsors the Dec. 10-12 New York Produce Show.

The one-day trade show simplifies things for retailers, McAleavey said.

“At PMA (the Produce Marketing Association’s Fresh Summit), you need two days to visit all the booths,” he said.

“This show, however, is manageable. This way, retailers get a chance to circulate and take it all in.”

McAleavey said many retailers also prefer the show’s format.

“They get to meet new vendors and new growers,” he said.

“There are so many retailers for a show of this size in one room in one day. That’s why people want to have a booth here.”

Council president Paul Kneeland, vice president of produce and floral, seafood and meat for Kings Super Markets LLC, Parsippany, N.J., said the expo offers buyers a chance to visit many grower-shippers, brokers, equipment manufacturers and other exhibitors.

“In terms of variety, there’s a lot to show,” Kneeland said.

“The uniqueness of our booth situation is we offer 10-by-10 booths to everyone. Legitimately, it’s 400 vendors versus 400 booths sold to 90 vendors and each one takes five 10-by-10s. From equipment to products and services, we certainly have a wide variety of what people want to see at a trade show.”

This will be the second year that Scotlynn Sweet Pac Growers LLC, South Bay, Fla., plans to exhibit at the show.

J.D. Poole, partner, said he enjoyed last year’s show and said it was worth the participation.

“The show has very good trade support for a new company like ours,” he said. “The first year we were there was very good for us.”

This year will be the first time that South Bay, Fla.-based Hugh H. Branch Inc. plans to exhibit at the show.

Brett Bergmann, co-owner, said the company enjoys exhibiting at the smaller regional shows.

“We are looking forward to the show,” he said.

“There is very good participation from the local retail community and the Northeast is a good market. There are so many people in that region. There’s great support for people in that area of the country for our products.”

Though many companies focus on the regional shows, not all companies exhibit.

As in the past, representatives with Frieda’s Inc., Los Alamitos, Calif., plan to walk the floor and visit with Northeastern customers, said Karen Caplan, president and chief executive officer.

“The Northeast is a very underserved market,” Caplan said.

“There are so many retailers in that greater metropolitan area. The show really brings recognition.”

Produce Business magazine also sponsors the show.



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