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Event Review - SupplySide West 2002

Annual: Yes

Date: December 4-6, 2002

Las Vegas, Nevada

Comparison to previous year: Twenty percent rise reported in number of exhibitors and attendees. Many exhibitors were present for first time, including a large contingent from the Far East (50 exhibitors). Exhibitors generally pleased with show traffic especially first day, with a higher level of enthusiasm and business optimism than previous year.

Number of : Exhibitors 427 companies in 596 booths

Total Attendance: ~4700 industry profesionals.

Attendance for: Associated Seminars

Educational sessions to start each day (sponsored by Cognis) were well attended by tradeshow attendees. NSF pre-show seminar was attended by manufacturers and suppliers alike, and this was generally the pattern for most of the educational sessions. Absolute number svaried depending on session with a typical range between 35 and 75 people.

Vendorworks (company hosted presentations) were attended by betwen 10 and 35 people.

Pre-opening reception session presented by Creagri (Hydrox(TM)) was attended by approximately 30 people.

Tradeshow/exhibits: Floor traffic steady. Exhibitors reported several leads and booked business on the show floor. Pace was inten e on Day 1, slightly slower day two.

The quality was generally high although some session were described as not terribly informative, mereley presenting known research/science or presenting facts and issues of which the audience was aware with no progressive movement to advance ideas and issues. The coverage and scope of the sessions was descrivbes as good as issues including certification, product development, science, regulatory, nutrition and other factors were all dealt with substantially.

Attendee feedback:

Overall feedback suggests that 2003 looks promising for dietary supplements and natural products. Several new companies on show floor illustrate that industry has low barrier entry.

Show pace was brisk, excitement was high, orders were booked on the showfloor and attendees met pre-show objectives.


Show Organization and Management:
All appeared to be in order. Virgo has hosted another professional event.

Improvements suggested and overall comments:

9 hours exhibiting time is too short.


Strong support for education and science indicate companies within the industry recognize that activities for the ‘greater good’ are required if the industry is to grow.

The show featured 427 companies occupying almost 600 booth spaces, with several first time appearances. Almost 20% of booth spaces represented companies outside of North America, supporting the fact that the industry and its issues are truly global, with 4 from Canada (Bioriginal Food & Science Corp., Institut Rosell/ Lallemand, POS Pilot Plant Corp. and ourselves ). Over 50 booths came from the Far East. Pre-show estimates projected over 5,000 attendees.

Education was a strong theme throughout the show, beginning with the launch of HYDROX™, an innovative ingredient from olives, presented by Creagri. This ingredient has strong anti-oxidant capabilities and is prepared in a patented process from previously discarded components of olive oil production.

The SupplySide keynote address, hosted by Aloecorp and Unigen Pharmaceuticals featured Sugar Ray Leonard in a motivating presentation.

Show education sessions, sponsored by Cognis Nutition & Health, were topical and well attended, including the ‘State of the Industry Update’, ‘Nutraceuticals Reduce Risk Factors for Heart Disease, Asthma and Skin Cancer (Dr. Ron Watson, University of Arizona Medical School) and the ‘Science of Compliance’, presented by a representative from the US Federal Trade Commission. There were also 15 company sponsored VenderWorks presentations covering products from immunoglobulins to spirulina, Coral Calcium to Compression Technology.

Degussa Bioactives, Roche Vitamins and NHS (Natural Health Science) were also visible in support of show events. Outside of the ‘official’ show schedule, NSF International hosted a pre-show, day long series of presentations on industry issues, including liability, the new Food Safety legislation in the US, and adverse events. Cognis featured award winning author and dietitian Elizabeth Somer providing insights and trends on nutrition and the perceptions of the dietitian community.

Many felt that floor time was too limited to accomplish all the business objectives. With two five hour show days, the second cut by a mini-reception for the last two hours, additional show time would have been appreciated.

A theme which emerged at several show activities, voiced by senior industry executives, researchers and regulators was that until there is an attitude supporting a bigger picture, a ‘for the greater good’ approach, this industry will not be mature enough and credible enough to counter the challenges it faces. There is a time for competition and a time for consultation. Not knowing what time it is, marks an industry in transition, one that still needs to mature.

One final observation: The term ‘Nutritional’ is appearing more and more in our industry, especially to describe or position ingredients, and the science base supporting them.

This was an upbeat show with many positive and encouraging signs. Despite this, there are companies and products that undermine industry credibility and in the US at least, this is an issue that prevents higher levels of industry growth and consumer

Show Management Comments:
Very pleased.

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