First B2B edition of Sana 2023 proved to be a success

With 650 exhibitors, 20,000 square meters of exhibition space and 12,500 operators, 10 percent of them from abroad, 12,500 visitors (the same number as the previous edition, but this time exclusively B2B), the verdict on the International Exhibition of Organic and Natural Products-Sana 2023 is more than positive.

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(Photo: Sana Press Office)

Exhibitors in the organic food pavilions expressed general satisfaction, especially during the first two days, with higher levels of enthusiasm depending on the time of day. There were those who experienced a greater influx during the first morning, driven by the opening of the fair and the conference. On the other hand, there are those who received more feedback during the second part of the second day. "Skimming in favor of B2B only made our work easier and in some cases saved time," said several exhibitors.

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Five Italian regions participated in the event, including some of the most important when it comes to the agricultural area that is dedicated to organic farming: Calabria, Emilia-Romagna, Marche, Puglia and, after a long absence, Sardinia.

Sana decided to support the organic farms of Romagna affected by the floods of last spring by allowing them to participate free of charge, in agreement with the Emilia-Romagna regional government. The bare exhibition space was given to the companies free of charge. This was done with the intent to help them get back on their feet after the disaster.

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The areas and companies of Cia, Coldiretti, the Bologna Chamber of Commerce and Masaf also attracted a great deal of interest. The latter was on air with the promotional campaign on organic products, launched in preview by Ismea, with testimonials featuring TV presenter Luca Sardella and music group Elio delle Storie Tese.

The rich conference program of the event was well received, registering one meeting and presentation per hour, totaling 80 and involving some 4,500 participants. The Sanatech program, a benchmark for the development of the agribusiness, livestock and eco-sustainable welfare supply chain, has seen the participation of 1,500 qualified operators.

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Trends and Innovations at Sana 2023
There was no shortage of ideas during a tour of the organic foods halls, many of which are the result of increasingly accurate and thorough research aimed at ensuring a wide and innovative range of food combinations, flavors and textures to try at home or on the go. They are aimed at people with allergies and intolerances, but also at people who enjoy the diverse world of vegetables.

These include 'Uao!', a product with the appearance of cheese that is not cheese. It is a vegan, organic, gluten-, lactose- and soy-free product made from chickpea flour and available in 4 varieties: spiced, smoked, turmeric and pepper, and walnut.

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The prickly pear has become the protagonist of drinks, juices and jams thanks to its beneficial and nutritional properties - it is rich in antioxidants, diuretic, prebiotic, hypoglycemic and antimicrobial. Cactus water, also made from prickly pears, is particularly interesting. It's a refreshing and thirst-quenching alternative in the wide panorama of herbal waters.

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The variety and quantity of organic, vegetarian and free-from products is growing. They are designed for quick consumption or take-away, such as ethnic dishes that can be eaten hot or cold. Growing interest for all things fermented.

There is a wide range of gluten-free products. The exhibition has been enriched with foods that are good for the body and health, without compromising taste, as confirmed by the excellent results of the tasting panels that took place during the event.

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Of particular interest are the dietary supplements offered in bamboo and hemp bars, the pocket herbal teas offered in practical multi-flavored kits, and the philosophical ones, where each sachet comes with a mini story to be read in five minutes, which is the brewing time.

And in terms of product packaging, we came across the 'fig ball' at the fair, the first eco-friendly packaging in history: it is a unique and exclusive product, the oldest recipe for preserving Dottato variety figs, a specialty of the traditional Calabrian gastronomy. The fruit is picked on the tree at the end of ripening, divided into balls and wrapped in green fig leaves ready to be baked

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The 36th edition of Sana will be held at BolognaFiere from 5 to 8 September 2024.

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