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    Global Food & Style Expo a Hit, Organizers Say

    The trade show featuring organic, ethnic, and specialty products attracted more than 12,000 attendees.

    It may have been missing the FMI Show, but new mega-trade show the 2008 Global Food & Style Expo was a "resounding success," its organizers said yesterday.

    The show, held last weekend at Chicago's McCormick Place, drew more than 12,000 attendees, especially domestic and international buyers. There were 800 exhibitors displaying trend-setting food and lifestyle products.

    The 2008 Global Food & Style Expo was comprised of three distinct events: the National Association of State Departments of Agriculture (NASDA)'s U.S. Food Export Showcase, the Organic Trade Association's All Things Organic Conference & Trade Show, and the National Association for the Specialty Food Trade (NASFT) Spring Fancy Food Show.

    During the April 28 keynote panel discussion, Lynn Dornblaser of Mintel International offered positive news for the specialty products industry. "The last time there was a recession, the gourmet food industry did quite well. Taste is still everything. That puts gourmet and organic products all in a very good spot," Dornblaser said.

    In addition to the trade show, the 2008 Global Food & Style Expo featured nearly 50 workshops, seminars, product tastings, culinary demonstrations, tours, and networking events. The program included keynote speeches by culinary luminary Bobby Flay, and branding expert John Moore.

    The show is billed as America's largest display of export-ready, specialty, ethnic, and organic products.

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