In the midst of a growing wave of public policy and consumer preference emphasizing healthful, high-quality food choices, the world’s fresh produce industry will strategize how to increase consumption and better appeal to children when it gathers in Anaheim, Calif., for the Produce Marketing Association’s (PMA) 2012 Fresh Summit International Convention & Exposition, Oct. 26-28. PMA’s annual Fresh Summit draws more than 18,500 attendees from more than 60 countries, making it the largest U.S. gathering of the global fresh produce industry. Its trade show is one of the 100 largest trade shows held in the United States.
Innovation, new products key to increasing consumption
“The First Lady’s ‘Let’s Move!’ anti-obesity initiative, consumers’ increasing sophisticated palates, new federal guidelines for school lunch—these are just some of the trends that are putting a spotlight on fresh produce,” said PMA President and CEO Bryan Silbermann. “To move fresh produce to the center of the plate, it’s up to our industry to ensure we’re delighting and safeguarding consumers, every bite, every time.”
This year’s Fresh Summit will feature educational sessions on consumer marketing, product and business innovation, and food safety. A New Products Showcase will highlight innovative new fruit and vegetable products, with a special Just 4 Kids Showcase highlighting kid-friendly new products. New this year, kids will help judge the expo’s Sensory Experience Contest, which puts recipes to the test based on the five senses.
Capping off Fresh Summit is its two-day expo featuring more than 1,000 exhibiting companies and 247,000 net s.f. The expo will showcase fresh produce and floral products, services and suppliers, from traditional fruit and vegetable favorites to the latest exotic specialty items.