THAIFEX – Anuga Asia kick-starts with positive response for future F&B prospects

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THAIFEX – Anuga Asia opened on 22nd September 2020 to a warm welcome by exhibitors and visitors. Participants looked to the event as a critical platform to introduce new products, network with international partners and build valuable relationships. The promising turnout at this year’s trade show reflects an increasingly optimistic outlook for the recovering F&B industry.

As Thailand makes commendable progress in recovering from COVID-19, THAIFEX – Anuga Asia is proud to be one of the first international trade exhibitions to open today in Asia. The F&B industry has been eagerly anticipating the trade show’s physical opening under the refreshed THAIFEX – Anuga Asia Hybrid Edition brand. This hybrid edition marks the first
event to be held after the COVID-19 pandemic restrictions have lifted; and aims to facilitate improved knowledge-sharing and provide new business opportunities for F&B industry professionals.

Robust participation at the enhanced trade show
This year’s event has welcomed a total of 797 companies – with international businesses participating in the exhibition through local representative offices. The hybrid format saw THAIFEX – Anuga Asia incorporating both physical and virtual elements to maximise the experience and benefits for attendees.

Business networking and market exposure continues to be a key focus of the trade show, with the introduction of a new Virtual Meet element to augment the event’s anchor business networking platform – The Hosted Buyer Programme. Available to all exhibitors after the trade show from 29 September to 2 October, the programme will provide exhibitors with a carefully curated group of 500 international buyers, supporting F&B businesses by continuing to create valuable sourcing opportunities.

The Department of International Trade Promotion Ministry of Commerce (DITP), co-organiser of the trade show also launched THAIFEXporter, a virtual initiative that conveniently facilitates trade negotiations between buyers and partners around the world. In addition to driving this online activity, DITP will also be supporting a physical product showcase at the foyer of IMPACT Challenger 2 called Eat Responsibly, presenting the latest trends in modern food consumption.

Additional programme enhancements include Facebook Live streaming, and activities such as the Future Food Experience+ also went fully digital via livestream or webinars, with these virtual content made available on-demand for attendees to engage with.

Leveraging growing F&B demand
An essential industry in Thailand and across the globe, market confidence in F&B continues to be strong. The industry is expected to recover alongside rising consumer demands in ecommerce, online delivery and food service. To further encourage local consumption and spending, THAIFEX – Anuga Asia will have 2 public days out of the 5 show days unlike previous editions of only 1 public day.

Affirming THAIFEX – Anuga Asia’s importance to the F&B sector, participants this year include established brands such as Mitr Phol and Betagro. Start-ups such as Aiko Corporation Co.Ltd, Musarium Co Ltd, Rice Factory Company Limited and Waraha Co. Ltd. also confirmed participation, striving to increase visibility and forge connections with industry leaders. Even amidst travel restrictions, international groups were still keen on participating in the event and sent representatives from local offices in Thailand – with countries such as Poland, Brazil, Norway, Indonesia, USA and Korea showing their support. The strong participation across various groups in the F&B industry underline their confidence in THAIFEX – Anuga Asia and the optimism the industry has to move forward from COVID-19 and grow.

The trade show is also an integral platform for brands to showcase their products and some of the most innovative items that are featured this year include Let’s Plant Meat by Nithi Foods Company Limited and Cricket Protein Powder from Cricket Lab Co Ltd. Big buyers like the Central Restaurant Group, The Mall Group, Oishi Group, Freshket, Lazada, Shopee and Radiance WholeFoods have expressed excitement and are looking forward to seeing new brands and discovering interesting products.

“F&B is an essential sector and while businesses will continue to face various challenges in the new normal, the key to success is to anticipate trends and changes in consumer behaviour, such as shifts towards healthy eating, sustainable packaging and food safety. New alternatives and customer touch points will emerge as this pandemic develops and THAIFEX – Anuga Asia aims to support F&B businesses in identifying and leveraging these opportunities,” said the organisers of THAIFEX – Anuga Asia.

A safe and successful event
With health and safety being a key priority at THAIFEX – Anuga Asia, a comprehensive suite of precautionary measures have been put in place this year to ensure the well-being of all participants. Working closely with Thailand’s Centre for COVID-19 Situation Administration (CCSA), the trade show ensures that safety guidelines such as temperature screening, management of show density, regular sanitisation of equipment and high touch areas, and contact tracing using the Thai ChaNa app, are strictly adhered to.

Observing safety measures, visitors and exhibitors are required to wear face masks at all times and must register via the Thai ChaNa app at multiple checkpoints within the venue. Visitors can also use the new pre-registration platform to print their own badges, allowing them to avoid queues at the on-site registration counters. With rigorous hygiene and safety standards in place, the opening day at THAIFEX – Anuga Asia saw well-managed queues and minimal crowd congregation, creating a safe and conducive space where participants could fully engage in a wide range of activities.