Natural Foods Merchandiser

Fancy Food Show pulls out of Chicago

By Vicky Uhland

The Spring Fancy Food Show is kaput and as a result, the All Things Organic show is in flux.

The Spring Fancy Food Show, which was held last weekend in Chicago, will be discontinued beginning in 2009, said representatives from the show's sponsor, the National Association for the Specialty Food Trade. NASFT voted June 20 to end the show's nine-year run in Chicago.

NASFT officials said the show failed to catch on with exhibitors. According to the Associated Press, last year, about 250 vendors and 9,000 buyers attended the Spring Fancy Food Show. In contrast, the Summer Fancy Food Show in New York pulls in about 2,300 exhibitors and 24,000 attendees, and the Winter San Francisco show has about 1,400 exhibitors and 16,000 attendees, according to the AP.

The winter and summer Fancy Food Shows will continue, according to the NASFT, but the organization was coy about its plans to replace the spring show. NASFT may consider other Midwestern Fancy Food events, such as a smaller trade show with educational programs, according to various reports.

The organizers of All Things Organic, the Organic Trade Association's show traditionally held in conjunction with the Chicago Fancy Food Show, are evaluating their options and will make an announcement in about three weeks as to what they will do, said Show Director Liz Plizga. She added that the show will continue in some form.

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