Positive signals from ANUGA, live in Cologne

November 7th, 2021

Before the pandemic, SIPPO’s BSO partners were alternately present at ANUGA in Cologne and SIAL in Paris with their national pavilions. After the cancellation in 2020, ANUGA was held again as a live event In October 2021. What changes were noticeable? Which new trends should be considered for a visit to food trade fairs in the future? What new trends are visible in the food sector?

Positive signals from ANUGA, live in Cologne

Before the pandemic, SIPPO’s BSO partners were alternately present at ANUGA in Cologne and SIAL in Paris with their national pavilions. After the cancellation in 2020, ANUGA was held again as a live event In October 2021. What changes were noticeable? Which new trends should be considered for a visit to food trade fairs in the future? What new trends are visible in the food sector?

Digital forms of presentation, which by necessity were developed by trade fairs worldwide during the pandemic, continued to characterise the «physical» ANUGA: It presented itself in a hybrid format. The physical event took place from 9-12 October in Cologne, and its virtual event "Anuga Home" from 11-12 October.

Exhibitors and visitors got the opportunity to participate digitally. The virtual trade fair presented panels through online seminars and company and product presentations in the digital Conference Room. The opportunities the physical exhibition offered for personal contacts, live presentations of innovations at the boots, and the direct acquisition of new customers, however, were obviously highly appreciated.

On the way to a new normality

70,000 visitors from 169 countries and 4,600 exhibitors from 98 nations proved that trade fairs of this magnitude are possible again. The percentage of foreign visitors was the same as in 2019, but the traces of the pandemic were still visible since many exhibitors, especially from China, Russia, USA, Bolivia, Vietnam, Morocco, South Africa, Indonesia (some of them SIPPO countries) were still absent. Many private exhibitors or BSOs presented themselves with smaller booths since the still uncertain situation made them register late, or their partners were not able to join them.  

Trends in the food sector

ANUGA showed that the international food industry is taking further steps towards more sustainable and more efficient global food systems. Especially the significant rise in the number of plant-based or purely vegetable products, alternative protein products as well as new products with a health-oriented additional benefit confirm these developments. The global market intelligence company «Innova Market» listed the reasons why consumers prefer plant-based alternatives in 2021: They are perceived to be healthier and gentler for the planet, they contribute to a more diverse diet and correspond with values and beliefs of nutrition-conscious consumers.

Further trends

Climate neutral schemes will have a growing impact, and the COVID-19 crisis appears to have intensified consumers’ interest in transparency, responsible production and product traceability. Innova stated that 59% of consumers are interested in tracking the origin of their food.

Areas of special attention for BSOs

The inclusion of sustainability strategies and the adherence to international sustainability standards will grow in importance. Thus, BSOs do well to select companies with products that respond to this demand and to develop respective export promotion plans. It is key that they provide sustainability-oriented services to their companies, that they develop corresponding marketing strategies and care for appropriate training of their own staff. Additionally, new skills need to be adopted to make use of alternative matchmaking tools (such as virtual platforms) and enhanced search engines that are nowadays offered by trade fair organisers.

Foto: Kölnmesse/Anuga/Thomas Klerx