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    FMI Connect Teams with Italian Trade Agency

    1st-ever partnership aims to promote specialty imported products

    Food Marketing Institute (FMI) has designated Italy as the “Host Country” for the upcoming FMI Connect 2015 event, scheduled for next month in Chicago. The partnership marks the first time a country has been featured in this way at the annual trade show.

    "As shoppers seek varied tastes and quality products, 83 percent of retail companies report an emphasis on ethnic products as a competitive strategy, and this focus is ranked as the third-most effective tool for competitive differentiation," noted Leslie G. Sarasin, president and CEO of Arlington, Va.-based FMI. "The Italian Trade Agency's presence at FMI Connect provides efficiencies for collaboration between retailers and suppliers in their strategic discussions on specialty imported foods."

    "We have secured the participation of an impressive group of more than 50 leading exhibitors representing Italy, to showcase the highest quality and excellence of 'Authentic Italian' foods and beverages," said Italian Trade Agency CEO Roberto Luongo. "Our focus is to reinforce that authentic Italian products create superior culinary experiences within homes in America, and we know that millions of shoppers are continuing to seek out 'Made in Italy' products."

    At the Italian Trade Agency pavilion, FMI Connect attendees will be able to meet with more than 50 Italian food and beverage companies offering wine, seafood, mineral water, olive oil, herbs, pasta, breads and cured meats. Each region of Italy will be represented, with a focus on companies that provide internationally-distributed, family-made products. Throughout the three-day event, the pavilion will feature daily demonstrations by noted Italian chefs, as well as wine seminars. Visitors can also sample the country's wines, coffees and gelati.

     

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