The third edition of The Packer’s Midwest Produce Expo, Aug. 11-13, proved again that there’s no substitute for face-to-face meetings.

But there’s also no sitting still in the produce industry, which is one reason we are moving the event to Minneapolis next August. Chicago is a great convention city, but it’s not the only city in the Midwest that can shine.

The Twin Cities are also home to Supervalu, which had its first national selling expo Aug. 12-14, in St. Paul.

With the Midwest Expo’s move to the Twin Cities next year, attendees and exhibitors won’t be so spread out or forced to choose between events.

There’s no doubt that the meeting calender continues to get more crowded, as more groups carve out a business niche. The Packer is launching a new West Coast regional expo next May in Palm Springs, Calif., for instance.

Any event needs to prove its value to both exhibitors and attendees, and that means return on investments of time and money.

The one-day expos that hold all exhibitors to a 10-foot-by-10-foot provide a lower entry point than larger events, and they also create an urgency to have productive meetings.

Of course any style of meeting can work, and not every style will work for every exhibitor or attendee.

The Packer is proud that the Midwest Expo is establishing a regular stop on the event track, and we expect the West Coast Expo will provide the industry a strong return on investment.

Did you attend the Midwest Produce Expo? Leave a comment and tell us your opinion.