LAS VEGAS--Almost 5,000 executives from dietary supplement, food, pharmaceutical and cosmetic companies gathered Dec. 4-6 for the 6th Annual SupplySide West trade show and conference at the Sands Exposition Center and Venetian Resort Casino in Las Vegas.
“This is the premier show of the supplement industry,” said Linda Doyle, director of marketing, new ingredients and business development with Roche Vitamins. “Not only was there excellent traffic, but we were pleased with the quality of the attendees.”
The SupplySide West exhibit hall consisted of 427 companies occupying 596 booths. The show was up in attendance by 23 percent and exhibit space by 19 percent over SupplySide West 2001.
"Along with the strong growth in numbers, the show had a very good feel to it,” said Jon Benninger, group publisher at Virgo Publishing. “People were upbeat and a lot of business was done.”
The show began Dec. 4 on a very positive note when Frank Ciara of Salt Lake City-based Chelated Minerals International made a hole-in-one worth $25,000 in the 6th Annual SupplySide West Golf Classic, sponsored by B&D Nutritional Ingredients. More than 230 golfers played in the tournament.
The evening of Dec. 4 brought together several hundred executives for the International Welcome Reception sponsored by Creagri Inc., which used the event and a preceeding seminar to launch its branded ingredient, Hidrox™.
The SupplySide West Education Program, sponsored by Cognis Nutrition & Health, began Dec. 5 and included presentations and panel discussions focused on science, regulation and business trends. The well-attended sessions featured speakers from the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), Nutraco, Avon, the American Herbal Products Association, the Council for Responsible Nutrition, the National Nutritional Foods Association, Wild Oats Markets, the University of Arizona, The Natural Marketing Institute and other leading organizations.
“Education and science are fundamental to the success of this industry, and Cognis’ sponsorship of the education program at SupplySide is an important example of our corporate responsibility to bring research news to our industry colleagues and customers,” said Paul Allen, group vice president. “We must all work together to raise the bar when it comes to promoting credible science, and Cognis is committed to making this a top priority.”
SupplySide West participants also enjoyed Sugar Ray Leonard delivering an energetic keynote presentation, sponsored by Unigen Pharmaceuticals and Aloecorp. Leonard described the characteristics of a champion and encouraged the audience to strive to achieve their own dreams. “Without determination, that dream never hatches,” he said. “We all have a hidden reservoir of strength. The thing is finding out what activates it.” The excitement at Leonard’s keynote address carried through both days of the exhibits, with many attendees and exhibitors commenting on the energy level of the show.
"The show was a great success for us because the majority of contacts that we had were with top level people and, in most cases, they were very interested," said Steve O'Reilly, sales manager for Chemi Nutraceuticals Inc. "I got the feeling that many manufacturers sent their people to SupplySide West with a more focused and definite purpose in mind. That is a good sign and hopefully indicates an upward turn for the industry as a whole. The energy level on the show floor on Friday was very impressive. I haven't felt that much interest and excitement at any recent tradeshows."
"We've had excellent business meetings at this year's SupplySideWest," said Ken Seguine, national sales manager for Chatsworth, Calif.-based Ayurceutics. "This show is just a great place to do business."
Participants also enjoyed the popular Opening Reception the evening of Dec. 5, co-sponsored by Degussa BioActives, Natural Health Science and Roche Vitamins. The networking event featured exceptional food, drink and music in a James Bond themed ballroom.
"Virgo can take great pride to have assembled a professional trade show that delivers results," said Elliott Balbert, president and chief executive officer of Chatsworth, Calif.-based Natrol.
"SupplySide West gathered the true industry leaders to get down to business," said Peggy Jackson, publisher of Virgo's Natural Products Division. "You couldn't miss the positive energy and buzz in the air. Feedback from the high-level executives in attendance confirmed the success of the show. We're extremely pleased with SupplySide's continued position as the top executive-level show in the nutraceutical industry."
SupplySide East 2003 is scheduled for May 5-7 at the Meadowlands Exposition Center in Secaucus, N.J. SupplySide West 2003 is scheduled for Oct. 1-3 at the Sands Expo Center and Venetian Resort Casino in Las Vegas. Information about the events is available at www.supplysideshow.com, or by calling Virgo Publishing at (480) 990-1101. Information about exhibiting or sponsoring is available from Todd Willis at ext. 1171, and information about attending is available from Stacy Davis at ext. 1718.
SupplySide is produced by Phoenix-based Virgo Publishing Inc., publisher of Natural Products Industry INSIDER and HSR: Health Supplement Retailer.