The 15th edition of the international food & beverage tradeshow (SIAL Canada) and the equipment and technology section (SET Canada), which took place from May 2nd to 4th at Montreal’s Palais des Congrès, concluded a historic edition. SIAL Canada and SET Canada have once again established themselves as the not-to-be-missed event for the country’s agri-food industry.
Food Revolutions, Innovation, and Unprecedented Canadian and International Representation
With 1,068 exhibitors and brands from 51 countries exhibiting on 240,000 ft2, and 20,771 professional visitors from roughly 60 countries, this edition of SIAL Canada and SET Canada has once again proven to be a success, both in terms of its offerings and its visitors. According to Xavier Poncin, Executive Director of SIAL Canada, the 2018 edition has confirmed the prominence of this gathering, which is without a doubt both a source of inspiration for the North American industry, as well as an instrumental place where everything happens and decisions are made.
With a show that was already sold out as of February 2018, never has local representation resulted in such an exceptional range of international products or so many crucial innovations. “This edition of the show is by far the most successful and complete in our history. This result is due to our ability to position our event as a leader in terms of the impressive variety of its offerings, its diversity in terms of the geography and industry sectors of its demand—and above all else, because of the high-level, cutting-edge content delivered via its conferences, workshops and hosted activities. We can unequivocally say that the objective of an ‘everything under one roof’ show has never been as fully achieved as it was this year. The 2019 edition is already well underway, more than 30% have already been registered during these 3 days—which is a first for the show! Add to this wonderful achievement the very long waiting list of companies that weren’t able to take part in the 2018 show, and SIAL Canada 2019—which will take place from April 30th to May 2nd at Toronto’s Enercare Centre—is already off to a very auspicious start.”
More Events and Meetings
For the 2nd time, SIAL Canada also had the pleasure of associating itself with both the ARQ Contacts show, which took place on May 2nd at Palais des Congrès and hosted 518 visitors as well as 144 exhibitors from the Quebec foodservice industry and with CTAQ for the Gala Evening for Young People in Food, which took place under the same roof.
SIAL Canada’s official buyers program—in partnership with the governments of Quebec (MAPAQ) and Ontario (OMAFRA), as well as EDC, the Association des détaillants en alimentation du Québec, COTA and AFI—also broke previous records by welcoming more than 100 buyers and 300 exhibitors seeking to meet buyers from all over the world as part of a dynamic, professional and effective process!
SIAL Innovation: A One of a Kind Contest in North America
A record total of 150 applications were submitted this year for the 11th edition of the SIAL Innovation contest. At the SIAL Innovation space on the first day of the show, the three big winners and two special prizes (packaging and organic) were unveiled in front of visitors and the press. Congratulations to:
- THREE FARMERS, for its GOLD-WINNING roasted green peas – CANADA, booth #215, who won the 2018 SIAL Innovation Grand Prize! Why this product? Protein-packed, low-fat snack of green peas that are roasted (not fried). Rich in fiber and minerals. Nut-, gluten- and GMO-free.
- CUCINA & AMORE, for its SILVER-WINNING ready-to-eat vegan meals – UNITED STATES, booth #2636, who won the 2018 SIAL Innovation Grand Prize! Why this product? Meals that can be stored at room temperature. Gluten-free and high in fiber. Pasta replaced by cauliflower “rice”.
- CRICKSTART, for its BRONZE-WINNING cricket-based protein bars – CANADA, booth #623, who won the 2018 SIAL Innovation Grand Prize! Why this product? Organic protein bars made from cricket flower. Also contains seed butters and hemp for a rich texture.
¡Viva España! A Country of Honour Opening the Market to All Industry Stakeholders!
The event began with the official opening, where Spain was the country of honour. On hand were many Canadian and international dignitaries, notably Francisco Javier Garzón Morales, Executive Director of the Spanish Institute for Foreign Trade (ICEX); André Coutu, Chief Executive Officer of Agri-Food Export Group; Nicolas Trentesaux, Director of the SIAL Network; Daniel Choquette, President of the ADA; and Xavier Poncin, Executive Director at SIAL Canada, all of whom spoke during the opening of the show’s 15th edition. The Agri-Food Industry cocktail event, organized by the Agri-Food Export Group on the first night of the show, was a triumph with 500 guests attending from all over Canada and the United States. The same evening, a video unveiled the SIAL Innovation jury’s decision and introduced the big winner.
A Wide Variety of Captivating Events
This year, the show offered 50 conferences covering important topics. Also, during this edition, more than 25 demonstration and discovery workshops were made available to promote the industry’s products and expertise. In addition, a colourful new event was held for the first time, on the second evening of the show: the show’s VIP Evening in collaboration with renowned chef Chuck Hughes. Nearly 400 industry professionals gathered in a relaxed setting with a beer and cheese theme. It was an unforgettable evening!
SIAL Food Hub in Partnership with HRI Magazine – A Great Success!
SIAL Canada presented SIAL Food Hub—an international summit organized in partnership with HRI Magazine, the Quebec food-service industry’s most influential media outlet. The event welcomed around 50 participants who had come to meet with the five select panelists, for a panel preceded by a Nielsen-presented introduction to market trends.
OLIVE D’OR, the biggest international extra-virgin olive oil contest in North America, attracted record numbers this year with 135 participating oils from 13 countries. The 12 best extra-virgin olive oils submitted by producers from around the world were selected to be named the Golden, Silver or Bronze Drops in their respective categories. The jury also selected 4 favourites to join the ranks of the best oils. More congratulations go out to Ena ena by Hellenic Fields, a Greek olive oil that won the best packaging prize, and to Oriviera Bio by Agromed, a Tunisian olive oil, for the organic prize!
LA CUISINE reinvented itself this year and offered up panel discussions on chocolate, sustainable development and new eating ways, with guests such as Jean-Jacques Berjot (Barry Calllebaut), Baptiste Peupion (Fairmont The Queen Elizabeth) and Renée Frappier (Expo Manger Santé). Each panel supported a culinary demo featuring Spanish, Canadian or Ecuadorian products, depending on the day. It was a real treat for the guest chefs—from Christian Faure and his smart pastries, to Doug McNish and his vegan burger, as well as Antonin Mousseau-Rivard and his foie-gras candies, to name a few.
New Sections at the Show
Visitors were invited to discover the various sections at the show’s 2018 edition: food service and ready-to-eat; the SET section for equipment, technology, packaging, and supply chains; the organic and well-being section; and the new beverage sectionwhere it was possible to attend the new Inspire Drink event!
CHEESE, where there were 5,000 ft2 dedicated to discovering the sector’s products, was a huge success again this year. The space was also combined into a cheese and microbrewery section! In its 5th edition, the section became a playing field for many professionals. Some took part in the cooking and cheese cake competitions, while others participated in the tasting sessions or the panel discussions on CETA. SIAL would like to give special thanks to the Dairy Farmers of Canada, Dairy Farmers of Ontario, and Agropur, the official sponsors of these activities.
As part of the 3rd edition of SoSIAL, SIAL Canada was proud to continue to take action to fulfill its social responsibility in collaboration with Moisson Montréal. This program aims to reduce food wastage by redistributing surplus food from the show. In the La Cuisine space, SIAL Canada handed out a $10,000 cheque to Moisson Montréal.
Finally, the 2018 edition’s experts, the true ambassadors who arduously worked before and during the show to be available to our SIAL Canada clients for questions regarding their respective fields of expertise.
Here they are:
- Innovation Experts
- Isabelle Marquis, Food and Health Marketing Consultant
- Dana McCauley, CEO of Blue Unicorn Innovation
- Cheese Expert
- Gurth Pretty, Senior Category Manager – Deli Cheese – Conventional Stores (Loblaw / Provigo / Real Atlantic Superstores / Your Independent Grocers)
- Organic Expert
- Tia Loftsgard, Executive Director at the Canada Organic Trade Association
- Health Expert
- Jane Dummer, Principal and Founder of Jane Dummer Consulting
- Digital Expert
- Stephane Ricoul, Digital Change Accelerator
- Packaging Expert
- Carol Zweep, Manager of Packaging, Food & Label Compliance at NSF
- Ethnic-Product Expert
- B.K. Sethi, President of B.K. Sethi Marketing Ltd
- Beverage Expert
- Jean-Sébastien Michel, Owner of Alambika and Jesemi Distribution
- Food-Service Expert
- Bernard Boutboul, Executive Director of Gira Conseil
- FDA-Compliance Expert
- Bob Bauer, President of the Association of Food Industries
- Olive-Oil Expert
- Christine Cheylan, Manager of Château Virant Olive Oils
- Packaging Expert
- Bruno Ponsard, Executive Director of ITEGA
- Supply-Chain Expert
- Daniel Clark, Senior Manager – Standards at GS1 Canada
The next SIAL Canada and SET Canada tradeshow will be held from April 30th to May 2nd, 2019, at Toronto’s Enercare Centre.