July 22 and 23

Top growers and manufacturers look forward to Fresno Food Expo

The top growers and manufacturers in California’s San Joaquin Valley will come together under one roof to celebrate the region’s rich agricultural industry at the largest regional food show in the nation, the Fresno Food Expo is to be held July 22-23, 2015. Participation among fresh produce companies continues to grow at the Expo, with a 25% increase from 2013 to 2014 after a date shift from March to its current mid-summer July date. The date shift from March to July in 2014 has provided an even greater opportunity to include the more than 2,500+ fresh produce growers and packers located in the San Joaquin Valley during their prime growing season. That number is expected to grow at the 2015 Expo when an estimated 150 local food production companies headquartered throughout California’s 8-county San Joaquin Valley will come together with approximately 750 key buyers from international, domestic, regional and local food and beverage buying channels.

As the number of fresh produce growers participating in the Expo grows, so does the number of produce buyers, including the field team of Canada’s largest food and pharmacy retailer, Loblaw Companies. 

“The Fresno Food Expo is a convenient and extremely valuable show. The 2014 show was the second one we were attending and eight members of our field team were present to connect with existing vendors and potential ones. Last year alone we found 3-4 new companies or products that we are following up on for future opportunities,” said Yan Branco, Senior Director, Vendor Development, Loblaw Produce International. “Due to the format of the Fresno Food Expo, we have more time to engage with the different companies – much like the Southeast Produce Council’s show and the New York Produce Show.”

The Expo also provides an opportunity for produce buyers to not only connect with these top growers – but discover new products and innovative packaging through the Fresno Food Expo New Product Awards. The awards, given in two categories “Buyers’ Choice” and “People’s Choice” are open to all registered exhibitors who have a new food or beverage product or packaging concept that has or will be introduced to the market between July 25, 2014 and July 23, 2015. Past winners were Bella Viva Orchard’s “Pure & Natural” Dried Fruit Slices and Baloian Farms’ “Squash Sauté Kits.” Applications for this year’s Fresno Food Expo New Product Awards will be made available to interested companies in May.

Known as one of the world’s most productive, diverse and distinct agricultural regions feeding over one-third of the world, California’s San Joaquin Valley is home to more than 2,500 fresh produce growers and packers, which accounted for an economic impact of $113.4 billion in 2012 and over 72% of California's agricultural value. As California continues to set the pace for the rest of the nation as the country’s largest agricultural producer and exporter, the San Joaquin Valley’s agricultural abundance includes more than 350 commodities alone – producing nearly half of the nation’s fruits, nuts and vegetables. The San Joaquin Valley is home to 21 of the top 25 nut growers, 10 of the top 25 stone fruit growers and 16 of the top 25 grape growers in the U.S. and accounts for more than 50% of total acreage in these three fresh categories. 

Launched in 2011, the Fresno Food Expo was established as an economic development initiative by the City of Fresno in an effort to connect food and beverage manufacturers throughout the San Joaquin Valley to local, regional, national and international retail and foodservice buyers. In turn, companies would have the opportunity to increase their customer base, expand their businesses and hire more employees, resulting in economic growth for the entire Valley.

Buyers and exhibitors may register for the Fresno Food Expo here http://fresnofoodexpo.com/registration. Qualified buyer registration is free. Exclusive site tours and VIP Event for pre-registered buyers will kick off on July 22, 2015 and the 2015 Fresno Food Expo will be held on Thursday, July 23, 2015, at the Fresno Convention & Entertainment Center New Exhibit Hall. More information is available at www.FresnoFoodExpo.com.

For more information:
Danielle LeBouef Griffin
Tel: (+1) 559-222-1322

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