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GREENFIELD, Mass. - Following the lead of the United Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Association, the Organic Trade Association -- presenter of the "All Things Organic" conference and trade show -- says it will co-locate next year's show with the FMI show.
FMI, which has been seeking ways to make its annual event more relevant for belt-tightened, travel reluctant retailers, has been successful with its recent efforts to enlist other industry trade groups to partner with it for the show, including NASFT's Fancy Food Show, and most recently the United Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Association's Produce Expo & Conference. All the events will take place May 2-4, 2004 at McCormick Place in Chicago.
Noting that "organic has come of age," Katherine DiMatteo, executive director of the Greenfield, Mass.-based OTA, said holding the show in a more central location will not only provide exhibitors access to tens of thousands of more buyers but is also a win-win for the organic industry. "Certification is in place. We're realizing record growth and organic is becoming a part of everyday American life. A move to the heart of the country is a move we want to make."
The new location enables All Things Organic exhibitors to have access to an established base of grocery, specialty store and produce buyers who attend the FMI, Fancy Food and Produce Expo shows each year looking for the best the industry has to offer.
Buyers will be able to attend all four events using the same badge, which gives All Things Organic attendees access to more products, people and information than ever before, said DiMatteo. The show will have its own distinct exhibit hall, complete with organic drapes and biodegradable serving products.