9 Things to Make You Want to Get a Booth at ISM

8 Dec 2021

Recently hit 50 years, ISM is an established juggernaut in the sweets and snack industry not just in Germany, but in the world. Throughout its history, ISM has been the meeting point between the West and East and facilitated high-level business deals between titans in the industry. It definitely shows in the numbers. Last edition bagged 38,000 trade visitors from over 100 countries, which cover most of Europe, North America and East Asia. 1661 international exhibitors booked a stand at ISM.

Every flavor and every type of sweets can be seen, smelled and tasted at ISM. Walking through the halls of Koelnmesse you’re charmed by colors and incredible presentations. The main product groups are chocolate and chocolate products, sugar confectionery, biscuits, snack foods, natural & trend snacks, breakfast snacks, ice cream & deep-frozen snacks, baked goods, artisan handcrafted sweets and snacks. That’s what attracts some of the biggest retailers in the world – Kaufland, Kroger, Metro, Coop, Whole Foods, Edeka, Aldi, Carrefour, Amazon, Walgreens and Costco. As an exhibitor, striking a deal with one of these international retailers is hitting the jackpot.

Regular exhibitors will be happy to learn ISM has an upgrade in its product presentation. You’re most likely familiar with the New Product Showcase introduced a decade ago, but now there’s going to be a whole hall dedicated to it. It’s the perfect venue to highlight your newest and most creative products and have them appraised by an independent jury. If you’re exceptional, then you might even receive a commendation for most innovative products. The categories are chocolate & chocolate products, sugar confectionery, biscuits, snack foods, Trend & Natural Snacks.

ISM continues to adapt and evolve, which during the COVID-19 pandemic is necessary. You swim or you sink as it were. With the pandemic still affecting travel from many countries, organisers are leaning into the hybrid approach. If you’re unable to attend or you worry you’ll miss key visitors to your stall, then rest assured the @home will help you reach the necessary audience either way.

Don’t think organisers have forgotten about networking. On the contrary, ISM @home has you all covered with the Discovery Graph, which shows you the digital connections you already have. Then using Contact of Contacts, you’ll be able to filter out new would-be partners. From then on, you have the powers of chat, video and audio to establish first contact any way that you look. That is nothing to sneeze at. You get the leads and have such an easier time to follow on them later on!

A lot of the lectures, pitches and presentations as part of the support program will be uploaded on the digital platform. Those interested can receive them on demand full three months after the ISM live edition ends. Early reactions are quite positive with exhibitors, in particular, as this means an extension of their influence and availability for potential buyers well past the actual event dates. Not to mention that you get access to the incredible content in the support program.

Perhaps even more valuable for companies next to sales leads is the qualified expertise and insights into the current state of the world market that’s shared on the Expert Stage, Trend lectures and the Global Competence in Food Stage. Regardless of what your particular niche and region are, you will leave for home with a lot more know-how and valuable information on innovations and emerging trends.

What everyone is talking about, of course, is the future congress #CONNECT2030. The goal of the congress is to look beyond what’s happening today or next year, but take the long view into the future. The threats of climate change and ecological collapse have sobered up many experts and high-ranking decision makers. As a result, efforts have been put into combating the effects of food production on the environment. The upcoming congress will tackle issues such as ideas for climate-friendly action, ideas for the sustainable handling of raw materials, CO² reduction and the developments surrounding Zero Food Waste.