Natural Products Expo East is the world’s largest industry trade show and business conference for natural, organic, and health products. Now in its 34th year, the trade show has grown tremendously from its humble beginnings.
Expo East 2019 is slated to take place September 11-14 in Baltimore, Md., and will host 1,300 exhibitors representing more than 100 countries. As always, the four-day event is filled with incredible opportunities for all.
Whether you’re a brand exhibiting your newest product innovations, or a hungry consumer walking the floor, read on as we share a know-before-you-go guide to Expo East 2019.
Schedule of events
The four-day event is packed with seminars, panels, and networking opportunities that can’t be missed. A complete schedule can be found on Expo East’s website. Check out some highlights below:
• Natural Products Business School (Wednesday, September 11, 7:30 am – 4:00 pm)
A full day of learning and networking for emerging brands, the Natural Products Business School will feature speakers from PlantBased Solutions, Nuun Hydration, VMG Partners, and Natural Products Consulting among others.
• Natural Products Hemp & CBD Summit (Wednesday, September 11, 9:00 am – 5:00 pm)
CBD and hemp have been major industry trends over the last few years. This summit will cover all the basics, instructing brands on everything from selecting quality products to educating consumers.
• Natural Products Expo East Pitch Slam Finals & Party (Thursday, September 12, 4:30 – 6:30 pm)
Always a highlight of Expo East, the pitch slam finals will be taking place on Thursday this year. Come for the pitch, stay for the celebration.
• The Influencer Summit (Friday, September 13, 12:00 – 5:00 pm)
Today’s top health and wellness influencers will come together to discuss new strategies and best practices to promote influence as a force of good in the industry.
• The FIX presented by Esca Bona (Friday, September 13, 2:00 – 5:00 pm)
A panel composed of “superheroes” within the natural products industry, these speakers have all faced daunting challenges, possess disruptive attitudes, and share a passion to grow. Hear from the minds behind Hakuna Banana and Chipotle among others.
• Get #EXPOsed
ForceBrands’ culture exposure campaign is back and bigger than ever. The campaign aims to highlight the unique cultures of different companies and the teams within them. Those looking to participate can reach out to ForceBrands to share their booth number — our team will swing by to take photos. Brands may also upload team photos to Instagram, tagging @forcebrands in the caption and adding #EXPOsed to the caption. Learn more about the campaign and other ways to get involved here.
Trends to look for
With the thousands of brands exhibiting at Expo East, there are sure to be a handful of trends emerging as strong forces shaping the industry. Here are a few to look for:
• Material optimization
Brands have become more environmentally conscious over the last few years than ever before. As a result, companies have come up with several crafty ways to get the most value out of ingredients used to create products. Be on the lookout for responsible packaging, waste reduction, and efficient materials.
• Plant wisdom
For social, environmental, health, and animal welfare concerns, consumers have begun demanding that companies replace meat and dairy products and other components with plants. Expect to see many more plant-driven brands, plant-based ethics, and an overall elevation of the use of plants.
• Agricultural commitments
An increasing number of brands are engaging in farm production and working to improve environmental practices in their supply systems. Look for more organic products, companies engaging in regenerative agriculture, and various agricultural improvements.
• A life of vitality
The pressures of modern life have driven consumers to seek diets that stave off and prevent disease, treat existing conditions, and optimize how they feel. Products containing CBD and hemp as well as those that promote a healthy microbiome will be major trends this year.
• Modern conditions
The 21st century has ushered in new afflictions as well as a deep desire to cope with, prevent, and cure these ailments by applying the latest science-backed research or alternative products. Keep an eye out for new brands offering products that promote brain health, eye health, and digestive health.
For additional information and resources, check out the Expo East 2019 website.