Anuga kicked off in a promising new way
A different press announcement
Every uneven year the main food retail event of the year takes place in Cologne with the Anuga. And traditionally, Koelnmesse organizes a press tour to present the upcoming event to journalists in the major European countries. However this year was different as reporters were invited to gather in Amsterdam for a two-days European Press Conference. I admit I was a bit surprised at first when I heard about this new concept. On paper it sounded that instead of investing a couple of hours for a press update with a quick lunch, a participant was going to have to invest two days of his time. Maybe that’s the reason that some journalists didn’t want to join. But to be honest, I was intrigued and I had a hunch that it wouldn’t be the “classic press announcement” we receive every two years. So unlike some, I blocked my agenda and made the trip to Amsterdam.
New format, yet familiar style
The agenda of the European press conference wasn’t just packed with presentations about the upcoming Anuga. Participants had the opportunity to visit (and experience) the Food Hallen of Amsterdam, get a guided tour of the production site of Beemster Cheese, attend an information session about the latest trends in the industry, and of course plenty of time was dedicated to networking and exchanging ideas. I’ll probably share about the different visits in other articles, but let’s concentrate on the next Anuga, as this was the reason we all came for.
I will tell you immediately that my intuition was right. When the session about the upcoming Anuga started, I sensed totally different vibes compared to previous years the moment we all sat down. Koelnmesse treated us to a room decorated kind of like as if it was for a DMEXCO event (for those who don’t know, very classy and conference like, and also a great event to visit if you are into Digital Communication). In terms of content, I must point out it was different to what I expected. The presentation and discussions were revolving around the latest trends of the industry, and not so much about praising the show. The panel discussion was quite interesting as various topics were debated such as animal welfare, food waste, digitalization, sustainability, etc. The upcoming Anuga was mentioned but not ‘oversold’. So it was a pleasant high-level afternoon about trends and the forthcoming fair.
To give you a little taste of what to expect in October, the Anuga will celebrate it’s 100thAnniversary. To commemorate, the show will organize various events. Just to name a few, you will have the Anuga Taste Innovation Show, the Anuga Trend Zone, Anuga Horizon 2050, the Culinary Stage, the Anuga Organic market, and many more. So for those familiar with the show, you’ll have some classics, but also some new happenings. Obviously, I will go more in details about these events in a future article, and will post it closer to the show date.
No other option: Block the date
So as I mentioned, my hunch was correct, and we can expect something different this year. But don’t get me wrong. The press events of previous years have always been nice and professional. It is just that this year, with this innovative format, I get the feeling that Anuga wants to mark something special for its anniversary. Also, it indicates that despite being such an institution in the world of trade fairs, Anuga can still surprise its partners and go to a different level.
Now, should we expect a repeat of this year’s press conference format for the next edition? Maybe. But I don’t see this new format as a new requirement. The only expectation I have is that like any trade fair organizer should, I will be taken to a different level in 2021.
The one thing that can be expected though, is to block the date of the coming show in the agenda. I already did, and this year I truly believe you should as well and shouldn’t come up with any excuse. I strongly feel Anuga will be worth a visit.
Anyway, if you still need convincing, do not forget that we are faced with a two-way story: Anuga impacted the industry over the years, and in return, the industry impacts and constantly reshapes the Anuga.
So I expect to see you in October in Cologne.
Anuga, from 5thtill 9thof October 2019, Koelnmesse, Cologne, Germany, www.anuga.com