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Retailer Roundtable: What do you hope to learn at Natural Products Expo West?Retailer Roundtable: What do you hope to learn at Natural Products Expo West?

Four retailers share what they're most looking forward to learning at Natural Products Expo West in March. 

NFM Staff

February 12, 2014

2 Min Read
Retailer Roundtable: What do you hope to learn at Natural Products Expo West?

Debbie-Sloan-cropped.jpgDebbie Sloan

Owner of Nature’s General Store in Bend, Ore. 

I’ve been attending Expo West for 30 years. The show has changed tremendously over the years, so now, given its size, I must be specific. This year’s hope is to gain marketing strategies that can help us shine as an independent in a mainstream market. But the main benefits of attending are keeping up with trends in this fast-paced industry and connecting with the right people.



Sue Andrews

Purchasing manager at New Pioneer Food Co-op in Iowa City, Iowa    

We can’t wait to learn about new, innovative products at Expo West. We’re looking for hot products with a focus on sustainability that align with our co-op mission. Partnerships with similar-minded companies are so important to us. We also hope to learn about the latest in gluten free, including packaging for the new gluten-free standards. Most of all, we’re looking forward to connecting and having a good time.

randy.pngRandy Owczarzak

General manager of Alameda Natural Grocery in Alameda, Calif. 

I want to learn how to keep positioning ourselves as the “independent choice” in our community by continuing involvement with the Independent Natural Food Retailers Association and other like-minded stores. I hope to keep building relationships with national brands that remain loyal to the independent channel and discover new companies that see us as a gateway to the marketplace.



Stephanie_20Hong.JPGStephanie Hong

Chief operating officer of Real Food Co. in San Francisco 

We have a strategy to eliminate items that contain at-risk GM ingredients from our shelves, and we’re opening new stores that carry only organic and non-GMO products. For that reason, I’m hoping I will find resources at Expo West that will help us inform, educate and spread the message about this complex issue to our community.


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