Exhibitors interviewed at the 2019 C&I Expo have confirmed a broad mix of conversations with independent and major buyers at this year’s event.
Renee Rogers from Freedom Foods said, “The 2019 C&I Expo has been a great show with a lot of quality leads coming through. Best of all there has been genuine interest in our brands and the organisers have outdone themselves again. In terms of buyers we have seen a bit of a mixed bag to be honest – existing customers that are looking at our new products as well as new customers that have heard about our brand. In relation to the interest in the products we have on display, it has been a fifty-fifty split in enquiries for our Crankt Protein products and Milk Lab plant based and dairy milk barista products for coffee. The petrol convenience industry is looking to enhance their barista-offer. Plant-based milk is growing and definitely on trend. Crankt drinks and protein have also had a lot of interest.”
“It has been a fantastic show – it has been great to have all of the retailers and suppliers each year. It is important to be here and show our new products, and it is also a great way to network with other suppliers. We have had a lot of interest in our new product development – including what our new Arnott’s collaboration will be in October as well as our new Dare SKUs. The new Yoplait smoothies are also receiving a lot of interest – with 10g of protein it is a perfect convenience product – no spoons are required for consumers when they are driving and consuming the product.
In terms of visitors to the stand, we have had a bit of everything, we have had some customers we deal with on a day-to-day basis as well as a lot of the major retail customers. We have also had a lot of the smaller site operators as well who don’t get a chance to see our larger portfolio – so it has been a good opportunity to meet with the independents,” said Key account manager from Lion Matthew Peddlesden.
Luke Cooper from Tom & Luke said, “C&I has been really good – a lot more activity than I expected and
the exhibition has been full for most of the day. We have had buyers on the stand with some real interest rather than just looking so from our perspective it has been fantastic. We have had a good mix of buyers from majors through to independents and they are all seriously looking which is a good thing. The better for you thing that is going well is trending well and hopefully it is a movement and we can stay on the front foot.”
Leonie Waldeback from Handmade Food Co said, “There has been a mix of independent stores and major retailers – some existing but lots of new. The launch of the Hot Sub that is pie-warmer-friendly
has been well accepted as it gives customers an option over pies and sausage rolls. I think C&I always brings a great range of buyers, today has exceeded my expectations. There were a lot of people in the show, and we were overwhelmed and at couldn’t always get to everyone on the stand.”
The director of Purabon, Kerin O’Brien said, “Don’t be influenced by the perceived size of the show or the time that it is open because for a manufacturer or supplier this is a small show, when you look at a floorplan and look at the hours it is running I am not getting much for my investment, the fact that the show has proved it self
over many years as a lot of shows comes and go. The people that we spoke with in the first hour of the show have been highly targeted and quality contacts that will deliver such an amazing return on investment that the cost of the show is really insignificant in terms of the revenue opportunity just from the people I have met on the first day.”
… and if you’re upset you didn’t get to make it, there will always be next year!