PLMA Chicago 2018 Private Label Trade Show is on track to meet or surpass last year’s all-time record numbers for international pavilions and suppliers, when the doors open 11-13 November in Chicago to buyers from major retail companies throughout America, according to the event organizers.
U.S. own label sales are growing as much as four times the rate of manufacturers’ brands, based on reports from Nielsen and others, and much of the growth is coming from sales of newer and more premium product lines. As a result, U.S. retailers are moving with surety and haste to add distinctive products sourced from abroad to their assortments, despite a trade environment that is creating uncertainties for international suppliers. In the frozen foods department, valued at $52 billion across all grocery outlets, own brands are recording gains of +6.5% – more than six times the growth of manufacturer’s brands – and market share has reached 22%.
Proliferation of international exhibitors at PLMA has been an ongoing trend and is evident across all food as well as nonfood categories. The show as a whole presents more than 2,800 exhibit booths annually from the biggest and most knowledgeable own brand manufacturers, with over 1,500 companies representing virtually all known consumer products categories. While exhibits overall have seen gains of +5% annually since 2015, participation by exporters through PLMA international pavilions has increased +40%.
A significant number of international exhibitors
International pavilions are on track for record numbers and many companies have been exhibiting at the event for many years. In 2018, taking their place on the show floor there will be pavilions from Italy, France, Spain, Turkey, China and Taiwan, as well as Canada, Mexico, Chile and Peru. More recent additions include pavilions from United Kingdom, Germany, Denmark, Belgium, Greece, Kosovo, South Africa, India, Pakistan, Australia, New Zealand, South Korea, Vietnam, Costa Rica, and Columbia.
The visitors who travel to the PLMA show in Chicago each year include retail buyers and executives from across the U.S., Canada, Mexico and South America. Procurement teams from virtually every large supermarket and drug chain, mass merchandiser, wholesale club and discounter attend regularly, in addition to online, convenience, specialty retailers and foodservice distributors. Buyers and visitors registrations at last year’s event reached 5,400 and total participation, including exhibitor personnel, surpassed 11,200.
New Product Expo
This particular section of the event turns a spotlight on the latest product innovations from PLMA exhibitors, while Idea Supermarket® showcases own brand programs from retailers around the world. Seminars and speakers focus on U.S. retailing and product trends with exclusive market research on consumer purchasing behavior and private label growth opportunities.
The tens of thousands of products being shown at PLMA for retailers’ own brand programs will once again include shelf stable, fresh, frozen and refrigerated foods, beverages – including wine and spirits, grocery non-foods, household cleaning, health and wellness, OTC, beauty, personal care and more. PLMA’s special Housewares Showcase, launched in 2017, will also be back with a more extensive range of own brand kitchenware, cookware, small appliances and products for the home.