With 6,700 trade visitors from all over Europe, exhibition duo expoSE and expoDirekt have come to an end at the Karlsruhe trade fair. The Verband Süddeutscher Asparagus and Strawberry Growers e.V. (VSSE) recorded an increase in visitor numbers of six percent. From 20 to 21 November 2019, 445 exhibitors from 12 nations presented their innovations for asparagus and berry cultivation as well as agricultural direct marketing.
The mood of this year's edition was significantly better than it was last year: "Last year, the lousy harvest -of both soft fruits and asparagus- was clearly noticeable, but overall, the yields were satisfactory this year, and this was made clear in several specialist events," one exhibitor said about that situation.
Many visitors had already been to some fairs in recent weeks. Although generally satisfied with the progress of expoSE, many were looking forward to the break before Fruit Logistica in February. "We only got back from the Agritechnica on Sunday and had to continue to build up to Karlsruhe on Monday." The event calendar for the asparagus sector is quite full."
The audience of the trade show booth was very interested, often looking for new machines or packaging solutions: "For us, the first couple of hours of expoSE were already much more successful than the entire Fruit Logistica," says one exhibitor happily.
"We always like to come here and have been there for many years" - that was a sentence one would hear that again and again, in both halls.
Among other things, this year the expoSE/expoDirekt exhibition duo focused on innovative and sustainable packaging solutions. Three of the six Innovation Awards went to developers of new product packaging, and the rest of the exhibitors focused on this topic as well. Solutions from possibly treated paper are currently hitting the market. In addition, hybrid solutions made of several materials as well as packaging with a low plastic content are also well received.
Breeding: Is the big variety boom over?
ExpoSE has always been the ideal platform for breeders and young suppliers of seedlings to introduce new varieties to a professional audience. Although some new varieties were presented this year, the big "variety boom" in both the strawberry and asparagus area seems to be over, some exhibitors confirmed.
Green and purple asparagus are currently on everyone's lips in the asparagus sector. "We hope that these products, as well as corresponding marketing concepts, will appeal to a younger generation in the next few years," says a supplier of seedlings.