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THAIFEX-World of Food Asia 2019 returns with a greater business focus and an elevated trade show experience to equip visitors for the future of F&B

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The largest dedicated food and beverage (F&B) trade show in the region, THAIFEX-World of Food Asia, is set to return for its 16th edition. To be held from 28 May to 01 June 2019, at the IMPACT Muang Thong Thani in Bangkok, Thailand, the trade show will feature brand new programs and experiences to equip visitors for the future of the industry, along with enhanced buyer programs and VIP services to further strengthen the show’s focus on quality business and trade.

According to recent research by Euromonitor International, disposable incomes in the Asia Pacific (APAC) region are projected to grow by 78.0% (in real terms) over the 20172030 period, spurring an explosion of growth in the middle class (source) and a surge in demand for modern products and services  including F&B. In fact, APAC is set to become the largest consumer of F&B by 2030, creating a huge market potential for established businesses and start-ups in the industry. Against this backdrop of opportunity, THAIFEX-World of Food Asia provides a gateway for international businesses keen on entering the region, and a springboard for Asian companies to expand to the rest of the world with its strategic location in Thailand.

Enhanced buyer program and new services to boost business and show experience

As a sign of renewed commitment to facilitating quality business and trade, THAIFEX-World of Food Asia 2019 will feature an enhanced Hosted Buyer Program. Hosted buyers will be able to access an online business matching platform from the end of April onwards to target and pre-arrange business appointments with around 2,700 exhibitors during the trade show, ensuring that each meeting is productive and meaningful for both parties.

“Business has always been, and continues to be, a huge priority for THAIFEX-World of Food Asia. Through the new online business matching platform and enhancements to the Hosted Buyer Program, we want to optimize the trade show environment to make it conducive for exhibitors and buyers to strike deals with one another,” said Mathias Kuepper, Managing Director of Koelnmesse Pte Ltd.

In addition to an optimized business matching platform, improved VIP guest services will cater to the administrative and logistical needs of top buyers and visitors to create the best trade show experience. A new THAIFEXclusive Membership Card will be introduced to provide members with special discounts for THAIFEX conferences and at F&B outlets within the IMPACT Exhibition Center, along with access to the THAIFEXclusive Club which has been expanded to accommodate more business meetings. VIPs will receive complimentary luggage delivery and storage (limited to 1 piece per person) to provide greater convenience.

“With the sheer number of exhibitors present at a trade show like THAIFEX-World of Food Asia, the ability for buyers like ourselves to select and arrange business meetings with specific companies ahead of time really helps us to cut through the noise and connect with the right products and services to take our business to the next level,” said Mariana Sudarma, Merchandising Manager of PT. Swalayan Sukses Abadi, The Food Hall.

Apart from VIP-specific services, new guest services will be introduced to create a more seamless and hassle-free trade show experience for all. Self-check-in systems and self-print counters will be set up to shorten the time required for registration. Free river taxi rides from IMPACT Muang Thong Thani (requires pre-registration) will provide an alternative and reliable mode of transport connecting visitors to Bangkok city center within an hour. Paid luggage delivery services to and from the airport will also be available upon request. Put together, these services will alleviate administrative burdens on guests and provide levels of convenience and flexibility.

Brand new programs and partnerships showcase the future of F&B

To immerse visitors in the future of the F&B industry, this year will see the unveiling of a new program – THAIFEXfuture Food Experience+. The new special show will feature engaging talk shows and interactive product demonstrations presenting specially curated content on revolutionary technology, products and designs from the F&B segment covering the following four themes: Food and Nutrition Trends, Business Operations, Beverage Innovation, and Technology and the Food Experience.

Housed under this program is the inaugural THAIFEX Startup pavilion which brings together the best young and innovative companies showcasing new innovative solutions including drone F&B delivery to augment and improve food service and the customer experience. The show organizers will also introduce THAIFEX Tech Pavilion, a platform created to showcase the best of new food technology ideas and solutions. These include cloud-based vending management systems, cloud-based POS and restaurant management systems, robotic customizable solutions, and innovative food delivery applications.

Michael Currie, CEO of urban drone solution start-up, Flingsaid, “New technologies like drone delivery in the F&B space have the potential to disrupt existing business models and create new value for customers and companies alike. We’re excited to be a part of THAIFEX-World of Food Asia presenting the future of F&B to an international audience, and we look forward to meeting other companies to network and share ideas on how we can grow and advance the industry.”

For the first time in the show’s history, the Thailand Food Innovation Forum will be collaborating with the flagship knowledge conference, innofood Asia Conference, to launch the groundbreaking Leadership in Food Innovation Conference Series. The series will present ideas and solutions that are transforming the way people view and interact with food, sparking discussion and knowledge exchange to take industry players forward in the process.

“Through the public-private partnership between the show organizers, we are able to integrate our well-established Thailand Food Innovation Forum with the innofood Asia Conference to facilitate greater knowledge sharing, and create more value for visitors and industry players at THAIFEX-World of Food Asia 2019,” said Kalin Sarasin, Chairman of The Thai Chamber of Commerce.

The revamped THAIFEXtaste Innovation Show will also feature a curation of the top innovative products submitted by regional and international companies across each of the 11 trade shows and special shows. These top products are picked based on criteria ranging from uniqueness in taste, packaging, type of ingredients and overall presentation.

The internationally acclaimed Thailand Ultimate Chef Challenge (TUCC) will also return for its 8th edition, and feature a new focus on Asian Cuisine for this year. Contestants will be able to choose their competing classes, based on their personal forte, out of 23 exclusive competing classes. New classes designed for the next challenge include the “Asian Gourmet Challenge” and the “AEC Culinary Challenge”. As testament to the international reputation of the show, this year marks the third time THAIFEX-World of Food Asia will be hosting the Qualifying Final Asia round of the Global Chef Challenge (GCC). Finalists will compete for the chance to represent their countries for the three categories: the “Global Chefs Challenge”, the “Global Chef Pastry Challenge”, and the “Global Young Chefs Challenge  The Hans Bueschkens Trophy”.

Undergirding the fresh supporting programs are the 11 core trade shows which have, over the years, become the centerpiece of THAIFEX-World of Food Asia. Altogether, the trade show will see the participation of around 2,700 exhibitors from across more than 40 countries with new country entrants for the year, including Australia (AUGVEG), Brazil, Columbia, PolandSpainSri Lanka, and the United States.

This year marks a special edition of THAIFEX-World of Food Asia with the host country, Thailand, currently heading the ASEAN Chairmanship.

Commenting on this landmark year for the country and the trade show, Banjongjitt Angsusingh, Director General of DITP, said, “With the theme of Advancing Partnership for Sustainability for our ASEAN Chairmanship this year, we hope that THAIFEX-World of Food Asia and all its programs will serve as a key platform to strengthen connectivity and partnerships between local, regional and international F&B players to drive sustainable growth in this industry.”

As part of THAIFEXWorld of Food Asia 2019, DITP will also be bringing in several entrepreneurs who have developed innovative products and creative solutions in response to the latest future trends in S-Curve industry, particularly, food for the future.