Presented by the Eastern Produce Council and PRODUCE BUSINESS magazine – sister title to Produce Business UK, the New York Produce Show and Conference has evolved into the second-largest produce event in the USA. As we gear up for its sixth edition on November 30-December 3, this year’s show promises even more intellectual engagement to help people do their jobs or run their businesses better
Those active in the pre-EU heyday of produce trade between the United Kingdom and the USA will remember that the big event each year was the United Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Association show held every February in a location that changed each year.
Well, it’s not your father’s produce industry anymore, and the way people meet and mingle in the USA industry has changed dramatically.
United – now called the United Fresh Produce Association – has changed. It has evolved into a smaller co-located event with the Food Marketing Institute, which is the main supermarket industry association in North America.
The largest produce show in America is organised by the Produce Marketing Association and is called Fresh Summit. It is a unique event, smaller only than Fruit Logistica in the produce world, and, as an association event, has many more general sessions and workshops.
A big change in the world of USA produce events has been an explosion of events located regionally. This is on a par with the pattern in Europe, where events such as Fruit Attraction in Spain and Macfrut in Italy, along, of course with The London Produce Show and Conference in the UK, have created a diverse set of options for the European produce trade when it comes to attending venues in which members of the trade can engage in face-to-face communication.
On the long trade show list in America, the largest of these newer events is The New York Produce Show and Conference. Presented by the Eastern Produce Council and PRODUCE BUSINESS magazine, it is the show that inspired the establishment of The London Produce Show and Conference.
What the NYPS programme has to offer
The event is typically the first week in December, so the 2015 edition is coming up quickly. This year, there is even more reason to come to The New York Produce Show and Conference, and you will have to plan to arrive for the last day of November to participate.
New this year is a full-day programme, on November 30, 2015, focused on providing an important industry orientation for those with five years’ experience or less in the produce industry. Done in conjunction with Cornell University, the event, known as the Foundational Excellence programme, includes a variety of educational, networking and commercial opportunities.
On Tuesday, December 1, 2015, the conference features the Global Trade Symposium, which gathers those who trade globally with those whom have business in which global trade patterns will impact.
The evening of December 1, 2015 is the Opening Cocktail Reception, which encourages introductions and conviviality among the trade.
Host of trade show activities planned
The main show day is December 2, 2015. This kicks off with a breakfast general session, which features the Perishable Pundit’s “Thought Leader” panel of key buyers of produce from around the world.
Following breakfast, the trade show opens, with about 400 exhibitors ranging from large global players – Dole, Chiquita, Fresh Del Monte, etc. – to local growers and wholesalers interacting with buyers from the retail, foodservice and wholesaling.
The trade show proceeds concurrently with many activities, including dramatic chef demonstrations, educational micro-sessions and student programmes for both culinary and ag economic or food marketing majors. There are media programmes with both conventional media, such as magazines, TV shows and newspapers, as well as other media activities focused on bloggers and new ways of reaching consumers.
The date also features a fantastic spouse programme with shopping, dining, touring as well as special spouse gifts and a fantastic suite for people to relax and socialise.
The night of December 2 is left free for attendees to enjoy New York City. There are many hospitality suites, cocktail parties, dinners and whatnot held that night – while others rush off to catch a Broadway show or see a Knicks game at Madison Square Garden.
Foodservice Forum and industry tours
Thursday, December 3, 2015, features the “Ideation Fresh” Foodservice Forum, in which the trade gathers to strategise on how to move the foodservice industry towards the United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) goal of half the plate comprising fruits and vegetables.
Also on December 3 there is a series of regional tours covering supermarket visits in Manhattan, New Jersey and Brooklyn, plus wholesaler visits to New York’s Hunts Point Market and the new Philadelphia Wholesale Produce Market.
Now in its sixth year, The New York Produce Show and Conference has grown to be the second-largest produce event in the USA. Its New York location places the show in the centre of the largest buying market in the USA and in the midst of the media centre of the country.
It has quickly become a “must-visit” venue in America’s produce trade, a place where intellectual engagement becomes a pathway that helps people do their jobs or run their businesses better.
The event is also held in a magical time and place as New York prepares for the Holiday Season, with ice skaters at Rockefeller Center, the Rockets kicking their heels at Radio City Music Hall and the stores on Fifth Avenue all decorated to greet the world of produce as it convenes in the great City of New York.