Shoppers Demand More Private Labels

PLMA 2019

More than 15,000 trade professionals from 120 countries are expected to attend PLMA’s 2019 “World of Private Label” International Trade Show, that will be held 21-22 May at the RAI Exhibition Centre here.

By Dan Orehov

The theme for this year’s “World of Private Label” International Trade Show is “Listen to the Buzz”. It highlights the thousands of conversations that will be taking place on the trade show floor between retailers and exhibitors at the world’s largest private label exhibition, according to the organizers. The trade show exhibits also reflect the latest consumer trends. There will be nearly 600 exhibitors of organic products, more than 250 exhibitors of vegan and vegetarian items, nearly 200 exhibitors of lactose-free products and 150 exhibitors of sugar-free items. One day prior to the opening of the trade show, PLMA will hold a seminar program at the Forum Zaal at the RAI. There will be presentations by industry experts as well as the announcement of the winners of the 2019 International Salute to Excellence Awards.

As a preview, I talked to the PLMA President, Mr. Brian Sharoff, about what visitors should expect at this year’s event, in the exclusive short interview below.

How many exhibitors will attend the event this year?

There will be more than 2,600 exhibitors from 70 countries at this year’s show. It is expected that there will be 650 exhibitors in the Fresh and Frozen food sector.

Which countries have been most active at the trade show so far?

In terms of exhibitors, Italy, Germany and the Netherlands are the top 3 countries. They would be followed by Spain, China, Belgium, France, Poland, Turkey and Greece in this order.

What are the novelties of this edition?

In the frozen category for example: frozen ready to eat ginger, veggie bites and vegan ice cream made from rice, frozen trout tartar, and vegetarian flammkuchen. At the trade show more than 100 frozen products will be on display at the New Product Expo located at PLMA’s Idea Supermarket area.

What are some of the highlights of the event that frozen food professionals should look forward to?

I think that professionals will want to see whether healthy eating, natural, organics, and vegetarian are growing in the frozen category and what new innovations are offered by suppliers.

How do you evaluate the current climate for private label food overall?

All consumer studies confirm that shoppers are looking to their retailers for more private label foods, beverages, snacks and other specialty products. It is evident that retailers are meeting this consumer demand and expanding their assortment.

What are some of the main trends regarding own labels?

Obviously, there are many trends but the one which I would watch most closely is the emergence of Millennials and their eating habits. As many studies have shown, Millennials are less interested in the traditional 3-meals a day schedule. They want to snack and eat when it is convenient. This can be a tremendous opportunity for frozen products but it can also be a big challenge as suppliers and retailers have to adjust their assortment, packaging and ingredients.

What are the networking opportunities that the event provides?

The key to any trade show is networking and in private label, no show provides better opportunities for meeting retailers, manufacturers, importers, exporters, consultants, and trade suppliers than the annual “World of Private Label” International Trade Show.

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