ASIA FRUIT LOGISTICA was a hive of business activity last week, with more than 13,000 trade visitors from 76 different countries pouring through the doors of AsiaWorld-Expo in Hong Kong on 6-8 September.
Visitor numbers were up by 16 per cent on last year’s event, setting a new attendance record.
Some 70 per cent of visitors came from Asia, with 20 different markets across the Asia-Pacific region represented. The main origins in terms of visitors were China, Hong Kong, India, Taiwan, Korea, Malaysia, Indonesia, Singapore, New Zealand, Japan and Australia.
“We’re delighted with the dynamic business activity on the show-floor during ASIA FRUIT LOGISTICA this year,” said Wilfried Wollbold, commercial director of organiser Global Produce Events. “The results underline ASIA FRUIT LOGISTICA’s role as the leading continental trade exhibition for the fresh produce business in Asia.”
Visitors to ASIA FRUIT LOGISTICA found a show that had expanded by almost a third compared with last year’s event in terms of exhibition space.
Exhibitor numbers increased by more than 150 on the 2016 edition. A total of 813 exhibitors from 43 different countries took part, while 24 national pavilions featured at the event.
China remained the single-largest exhibiting country at ASIA FRUIT LOGISTICA, with bookings and company participation expanding by more than 50 per cent compared with last year’s event. The other leading exhibiting countries were Italy, Egypt and Australia, which ranked second, third and fourth respectively in terms of exhibitor bookings.
Spain leapt into the top five exhibiting countries for the first time with more than 40 Spanish companies showcasing their products and services. South Africa surged into sixth place, with exhibitor numbers tripling to 33 companies.
Close to half of all exhibitors at ASIA FRUIT LOGISTICA came from the Asia and Oceania regions. Europe made up almost a quarter of all exhibitors, followed by the Americas (15 per cent), Africa (12 per cent) and the Middle East (4 per cent).
Five countries also made their debut appearance as exhibitors at the show, including Costa Rica, Finland, Jordan, the Ukraine and Uzbekistan.
ASIAFRUIT CONGRESS offers expert insights
ASIA FRUIT LOGISTICA offered visitors an unrivalled combination of business, networking and information opportunities.
It all got under way with the ASIAFRUIT CONGRESS, Asia’s premier fresh produce conference event, which took place on Tuesday 5 September, the day before ASIA FRUIT LOGISTICA opened its doors. More than 400 high-level industry professionals from around 40 different countries attended the conference, which was addressed by expert speakers covering a range of hot topics.
ASIAFRUIT CONGRESS opened with a session exploring the rapidly changing food retail landscape in Asia. Shirley Zhu, who leads the South East Asia research programme for global food and grocery analyst IGD, provided a macro-view of the key trends in Asia’s food retail market. The session then zoomed in on the merging of online and offline (O2O) retail channels. ASIAFRUIT CONGRESS moderator Chris White interviewed Paul Sheh of Alibaba-backed O2O retailer Hema Supermarket, followed by Walmart China’s Winstone Chee and Sam’s Club China’s Yoep Man, about their respective strategies.
In the other general sessions at ASIAFRUIT CONGRESS, Zespri’s global marketing manager Jiunn Shih delivered a dynamic insight into consumer-centric fresh produce marketing, while Rabobank’s chief Asia-Pacific strategist Michael Every offered a thought-provoking perspective on the changing global trade landscape.
ASIA FRUIT AWARDS: celebrating excellence
ASIAFRUIT CONGRESS also hosted the presentation of the ASIA FRUIT AWARDS.
Presented by Asiafruit Magazine and ASIA FRUIT LOGISTICA to celebrate excellence in Asia’s fresh produce business, the ASIA FRUIT AWARDS recognise Asia’s best companies in the fields of marketing, importing and produce retailing.
Major apple and pear cooperative Belgian Fruit Valley won the Marketing Campaign of the Year for ‘Truval Pears’, a long-running campaign to develop new markets for a new product across Asia. Freshmart Singapore took out the Importer of the Year Award, while the Produce Retailer of the Year Award went to Alibaba-invested O2O retailer Hema Supermarket.
More information opportunities on the show-floor
Visitors to ASIA FRUIT LOGISTICA found plenty of information opportunities on the show-floor with two Hall Forums this year. Hall Forum One – the ASIAFRUIT BUSINESS FORUM – offered practical workshops covering topical subjects in the fields of packaging, marketing, and production and trade.
Hall Forum Two turned the spotlight on the worlds of hi-tech and logistics. Each morning, SMART HORTICULTURE ASIA explored data management and disruptive technologies at different stages of the supply chain. Each afternoon, COOL LOGISTICS ASIA offered practical workshops on cold-chain management covering a range of issues, from the future of container shipping to exporting to Asia by air.
The next edition of ASIA FRUIT LOGISTICA takes place on 5-7 September 2018 at AsiaWorld-Expo Center in Hong Kong. ASIAFRUIT CONGRESS takes place on 4 September at the same venue.
Loren Zhao, Fruitday (China)
“This year, the exhibition is really big and there’s a lot more people. I came here to learn, and have noticed that it is so much bigger than last year and there are so many more Chinese exhibitors.”
Lachlan Smith, PwC (Australia)
“ASIA FRUIT LOGISTICA provides a great view into the progress, opportunities and collective sentiment of the diverse spectrum of businesses in the horticultural industry. It gives businesses an opportunity to discuss important issues and exchange unique ideas with exhibitors and visitors alike. It’s a must-attend event for any business involved in the horticultural supply chain.”
Parth Karvat, Yupaa Fresh (India)
“ASIA FRUIT LOGISTICA gets busier and better every year.”
Ben Reilly, Steritech (Australia)
“ASIA FRUIT LOGISTICA attracts businesses focused on servicing Asian markets to one convenient location every year. It’s convenient, enjoyable and highly productive for Steritech to attend. ASIAFRUIT CONGRESS is a refreshing, informative event that allows higher level contacts and thoughts to be shared.”
Ehab Eid, MEAD (Egypt)
“We have received some excellent quality clients during the show, including buying managers from the big retailers. Egypt has a big presence this year.”
Say-Han Kim, Quali Korea Corp (Korea)
“It’s our first time at ASIA FRUIT LOGISTICA. We’ve been at FRUIT LOGISTICA [in Berlin] for eight years, and have been focusing on the European market. Now, we’re here exhibiting at ASIA FRUIT LOGISTICA to meet companies from Asian markets.”
Dominika Kozarzewska, Polish Berry Cooperative (Poland)
“ASIA FRUIT LOGISTICA is very important for us because it is an opportunity to extend our commercial reach into new markets around the world.”
Zhang Yi, Floruit (China)
“This is my second year exhibiting, and the show this year is much bigger and more diverse. We are very impressed. ASIA FRUIT LOGISTICA is moving in the same direction as FRUIT LOGISTICA in Berlin, with exhibitors covering the complete supply chain. There are not only producers and marketers here, but more solutions and machinery providers.”
Ngoc Loan Pham, Good Life (Vietnam)
“It’s a very professional show. We have been to big exhibitions like Foodex Japan and SIAL, but this is the major show for fresh fruit and vegetables in Asia. There’s so much information available here, and so many customers from Asian countries.”
Brett Price, Agricultural Appointments (Australia)
“This is the first time we’ve exhibited at an international trade show and we’ve been impressed. Not only does it allow us to dip our toe into the Asia-Pacific market, it also allows us to see so many Australian companies in one place. In the recruiting industry, our greatest skill is networking, and ASIA FRUIT LOGISTICA presents a great opportunity to do just that.”
Augusto Renella, Naturitalia (Italy)
“This year we noticed that the exhibition has grown in terms of exhibitors and also visitors. From our point of view this is a very important moment for the fruit and vegetable industry in Asia and [ASIA FRUIT LOGISTICA] is a must-have event [if you want] to be in the market, introduce new products, know about new trends and so on. As Europeans, we have to have direct contacts.”
Mandy Hart, Marco (UK)
“The show is well-organised and it’s a good platform for business and for this part of the world. This is the place to be. It feels like momentum is growing.”
Clayton Swart, South African Table Grape Industry (South Africa)
“We’ve had good footfall from people across the different Asian markets, including lots of Hong Kong and Chinese businesses. It’s the right crowd and there are lots of buyers coming through.”
Daniel Huynh, Viet Exotic (Vietnam)
“We’re exhibiting at ASIA FRUIT LOGISTICA to see our importers and meet new customers. While we mainly export high-quality produce to Europe, we’re now also looking to develop exports to new markets in Asia”
Christina Manossis, Zeus Kiwi (Greece)
“Zeus Kiwi is here every year, but I haven’t attended since 2013. It’s impressive how much the exhibition has grown, and there are a huge number of visitors. It is definitely worthwhile to keep coming to ASIA FRUIT LOGISTICA.”
Hans Kim, Evergood (Korea)
“We come to ASIA FRUIT LOGISTICA once a year to meet clients and to continue to expand our export programmes, supplying not just any fruit, but premium fruit.”
Nardia Stacy, Fruit West Co-Operative (Australia)
“ASIA FRUIT LOGISTICA is the debut for Bravo [apples] on the world stage. It’s been a marvellous opportunity to get everybody together and introduce the premium apple brand to companies from around the world.”