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    PMA Readies for Fresh Summit

    Event offers several first-time-ever benefits, adds new twists to enhance attendee experience

    The countdown is on for the Produce Marketing Association’s (PMA) Fresh Summit International Convention & Exposition, set to take place Oct. 14-17, at the Georgia World Congress Center in Atlanta.

    “All the savvy new things happening at the show this year will make Fresh Summit that much more powerful,” said John Oxford, president and CEO of L&M Companies, and PMA’s Fresh Summit committee chairman. “The show always sets the trends for the year ahead, not only nationally, but globally. Many consider it the place where ‘next year’ begins.”

    Buzzing with energy in a who’s who atmosphere, Fresh Summit attendees will catch the latest on flavor, innovation and seasonality. With an anticipated 18,000 attendees from all segments of the supply chain from more than 50 countries, Fresh Summit is the largest exhibition globally for the produce industry. More than 900 exhibitors will tell the story of their products, and service and build business relationships that increase productivity, lower costs and meet consumer demand.

    This year’s Fresh Summit offers several first-time-ever benefits, including an expanded set of buyers who will walk the show floor from institutional feeding operations, cruise ships, hotels and others who haven’t previously attended Fresh Summit. Exhibitors will also be able to tell their story to such consumer-influencers as food bloggers, nutritionists, dietitians and members of the consumer media—all who have been invited to attend for the first time.

    The schedule for the final day of the show will be more flexible, and shortened. Rather than a general session followed by the expo, booths will be open from 9 a.m. to noon with two education sessions conducted on the show floor (one retail panel and one consumer panel).

    A continuously updated Fresh Summit Video Wall allows all in the supply chain to post videos, highlighting their impressions about the biggest food industry trends and the value they receive from attending Fresh Summit. Viewers will be able to filter the videos by location, popularity or view it on a map. Viewers can also “like” videos and share them on their favorite social media site. In addition, PMA will host an on-site news program, PMA TV, highlighting each day’s events, interviews with industry experts and on the floor reporting with exhibitors and industry leaders. PMA TV will be available online on PMA’s website throughout the show.

    The popular “Best of Show” exhibitor award will feature a People’s Choice component for the first time this year. The award will go to the company that receives the most votes through an onsite text poll. The winning exhibit will demonstrate effectiveness in overall appearance, product or service presentation and staff performance.

    Fresh Summit will also host its first “Sensory Experience” contest, providing exhibitors the opportunity to demo tasty and innovative ways to use their product.
    Making registration easier, attendees who want to be able to participate in everything without having to purchase separate tickets can purchase the new All Access Pass. For those wanting to register online, the registration process has been updated and simplified.

    To help attendees keep up with the busy schedule, this year the mobile app will return—with additional features. It will be ready for download soon at www.freshsummit.com/mobile.

    The successful Retailer Program will also return this year, which aims to bring in new retailers domestically and globally. Last year, the program brought in 16 buyers from more than eight countries.

    The last day for registration is September 30. Note that PMA members as well as retailers and foodservice operators receive registration-fee discounts.

    For more information, visit www.pma.com.

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