Last updated on September 9th, 2015 at 04:09 pm
Natural Products Expo East, the East Coast’s largest natural, organic and healthy products event, is poised to draw record numbers this year, with more than 22,000 attendees and more than 1,800 exhibitors slated to turn out; approximately 30 percent of those exhibiting will be doing so for the first time.
Expo East will take place Sept. 16-19 at the Baltimore Convention Center in Maryland and is co-located with Biofach America-All Things Organic, NPA East and the Harvest Festival.
“The city of Baltimore has always felt like home to Expo East, providing a true community to our event with its flourishing food, art and culture scenes, a more robust inner harbor and downtown, expanded BWI airport and more new hotels,” said Adam Andersen, managing director for Natural Products Expos.
Each year, Expo East draws retail buyers from independent stores, natural market chains and big-box retailers. Categories represented at Expo East include natural and specialty food and beverages, supplements, pet, natural living and beauty categories.
New emerging trends include foods and beverages with floral ingredients such as hibiscus, elderflower and chamomile; coffee fruit, and flavorful anti-oxidant rich and anti-inflammatory fruit; and snacks using avocado oil, which is GMO free and paleo friendly.
The 2015 Expo East program will be broken into six themes: Natural in the Media; Ingredient Reform; “Future of” Series; Non-GMO Series; Trends & Growth Series; and Conscious Leadership. The event’s keynote speakers will include Dylan Ratigan, a New York Times best-selling author, sustainability entrepreneur and former MSNBC host; Joel Salatin, a third-generation farmer in Virginia’s Shenandoah Valley; and Michele Simon, a public health lawyer who has been writing about the food industry since 1996.
New to the expo this year will be the “Farm-to-Market Tour,” where attendees can visit some of Baltimore’s nearby farms and the retail stores that source from them.