Nearly 5,000 attendees visit the Nordic region’s biggest natural and organic trade event of the year
MalmöMässan, in Sweden, was at the epicentre of all things natural and organic last week, as nearly 5,000 industry buyers, retailers, wholesalers, distributors and suppliers gathered from around the world for Natural Products Scandinavia and Nordic Organic Food Fair.
The Nordic region’s biggest co-located trade shows for natural and organic food and drink, health, beauty, eco-living and self-care products took place over 16-17 November. A record 4,912 attendees (a significant 25% increase for 2016) were out in force to see and sample the next-wave of new product innovations from 375 exhibiting companies.
Representatives from over 2,000 companies (from 68 countries) packed the aisles over the two day event. Notably, over one in four visitors cited a corporate spend of over €1m (16% reported over €5m).
Highlights for 2016 included the announcement of the winners of the Natural & Organic Awards Scandinavia, plus the Nordic Organic Chef Competitions. While the show’s three theatres – featuring 27 expert speakers, 14 brand pioneers and a new Eco Packaging conference – saw many sessions draw standing room only crowds.
Event director Anne Seeberg says: “The Nordic region’s appetite for natural and organic has never been bigger and – like this show – it’s still growing!”
“There was a fantastic energy and enthusiasm across the show floor this year. The aisles were packed with buyers ready to do business, and many of our exhibitors have already reported significant orders and distribution deals being done.”
“It’s really amazing how Natural Products Scandinavia and Nordic Organic Food Fair have really caught the imagination, and attention, of everyone involved in this important sector. It’s now firmly established as not just a must attend event in Scandinavia but as one of the leading events for natural and organic in the world. Combine that with a 25% increase in attendees for 2016 and we really couldn’t ask for a better result!”
“Special thanks must go to our association and media partners for their continued invaluable support, our exhibiting companies for helping to make the show look so spectacular, and the visitors who came out in their thousands!”
Big name buyers flock to the show
As in previous years, the majority of visitors to the show were Swedish and Danish (68%), with key buyers and managers from many of Scandinavia’s biggest retailers, health stores, pharmacy chains, wholesalers and distributors, public kitchens, and supermarkets in attendance.
Among them were ICA Sverige, Axfood, Dansk Supermarked, Coop Sverige, Coop Danmark, Life, Life Everkost, HKC Egenvård, Matas, Netto, Ikea, Lidl, Aldi, Willys, Danasan, TJX Europe, Wholefood Planet Organic, Dagrofa, Svensk Cater, Dansk Cater, Hälsokraft, Helsam, Kung Markatta, Gymgrossisten, Infinity Foods, Mat.se, Nemlig.com, Reitan Servicehandel, FoodService Danmark, 7-Eleven, Ruohonjuuri, Martin&Servera, Menigo Foodservice, Orkla Foods, Urtekram, Arnold Suhr Netherlands, Bodystore.com, Matsmart in Scandinavia, Rema 1000, BC Hospitality Group, Naturkost Übelhör, Renée Voltaire, and Magasin du Nord.
“Sustainability is a very important part of our consumer offer which we constantly evolve. The fair offers an excellent opportunity to gain an overview of new products, suppliers and trends,” says Silvie Königsmark, category manager beauty care & health at Coop Sverige AB.
“Natural Products Scandinavia is the best way to gain quick and extensive knowledge about natural and organic products in the Nordic landscape. It’s the perfect marketplace for those looking to expand into the Nordic region, and looking for exciting new brands,” says Henrik Olténg, managing director of Weleda Nordic and chairman of NOC Sweden.
“Nordic Organic Food Fair is always an inspirational fair, that is highly useful with regards to meeting new partners, and discovering new products and trends,” says Jacob Nielsen, food buyer at Magasin du Nord.
“The show is excellent for all companies to gain exposure within the organic food industry. A great event, we’ll be back next year!” says Alejandro Franco, co-founder of Kaffe Bueno ApS.
400 exhibitors forecast for 2017
The significant surge in visitor numbers has led many exhibiting companies to hail the 2016 show as its biggest and most successful yet. Thanks to a 13% increase in exhibition space for 2016, there were an unparalleled 375 exhibitors showcasing more new products than ever. To accommodate existing numbers, and meet growing demand from a raft of new suppliers looking to reach this important market, the show organiser, Diversified Communications UK, has announced plans to host over 400 exhibitors next year.
Looking ahead to 2017, there will also be returning national pavilions from KRAV, Organic Denmark, Italy, Germany, Holland, and the Baltics.
Nordic Organic Chef Competitions
The Nordic Organic Chef Competitions, hosted by Föreningen Ekokockar, showcased the culinary talents of top chefs from across Sweden, Norway, Finland and Estonia. Designed to promote and celebrate the valuable contributions chefs make to the organic market, the competitions also served up a host of innovative menu ideas for this year’s show visitors.
Håvard Klempe, who works as a chef at Credo in Trondheim, in Norway, was crowned Nordic Organic Chef of the Year. Viktor Arabzadeh, from Upper House in Göteborg, in Sweden, won Sweden’s Organic Chef of the Year. While the student team from Lycksele school in Tannbergskolan – Johanna Eliasson, Ebba Wilhelmsson and Moa Isaksson – were named Sweden’s Young Organic Chefs of the Year.
Natural & Organic Awards Scandinavia
Featuring new launches from the last twelve months, the show’s two Natural & Organic Awards Showcases boasted a record 150 entries for 2016. The ten ‘Best new product’ winners (as voted for by visiting buyers), the Butikstrender Most Unique Product Award, plus the show’s two prestigious ‘Lifetime achievement’ awards, were announced in the Natural Theatre at the close of opening day.
The 2016 winners include:
– Best New Health & Nutrition Product: Back on Track – Chia Humara
– Best New Natural Food Product: Biofood-Biolivs AB – Fairtrade Chocolate
– Butikstrender Most Unique Product Award 2016: Macacos – Cajá
– Best New Eco/Natural Living Product: Mulieres – Natural Detergent “Rose Garden”
“We are delighted that our passion, hard work and commitment to natural living has been recognised at this remarkable event. It is an honour to win in a category that included so many other exceptional products. It has been an excellent show and we’ve met with potential partners from all over the world, not just the Scandinavian region. It’s the perfect spot to launch new products,” says Merylin Rüütli, co-founder of Mulieres.
– Best New Natural Beauty Product (cosmetics, haircare, beauty supplement): Bruns – Bruns Balsam Nr 03
“We are so happy and proud to win this award! We believe in this event, with its purpose to inspire innovation and help increase brand exposure. We’ll definitely be back in the future and recommend everyone to visit!” says Johanna Lindskoug and Cecilia Nilsson, founders of Bruns.
– Best New Natural Skincare Product (face & body): Pharma GP ApS – Vilact 24/7 Heel Repair Cream
“We are very pleased to have won this award, especially for the second year in a row. We have exhibited at Natural Products Scandinavia several times, it has given us the opportunity to meet our customers and potential distributors and present our products,” says Pernille Steenfat, partner at Pharma GP ApS.
– Best Organic Non-Food: OrganiCup – Organicup
“We, at OrganiCup, are so happy and proud to win this award. We are sure that this award, and this great exhibition, will help us increase the awareness among women of better menstrual health and of menstrual cups,” says Gitte Dalberg-Larsen, head of sales at OrganiCup.
– Best New Natural Drink Product: Tropicsoul – Tropicsoul
“We are very proud and happy. Not only is this prestigious award voted for by the industry experts attending Natural Products Scandinavia, but it is also a great recognition for being a premium product and brand. It will strengthen our brand and open up opportunities to expand in the competitive Scandinavian market,” says Peter Bäckman, partner at Tropicsoul
– Best New Organic Drink/Beverage: Caribbean Vintage – K’Shiri
“The exceptional creativity and the incredible range of new products, flavours and innovations at Natural Products Scandinavia and Nordic Organic Food Fair 2016 demonstrates, once again, that organic and natural products are more and more an ambitious and realistic new way of life in Scandinavia. The show was a real success story for us. We were particularly proud to win the award, as it is a great international recognition of our continuous efforts to provide high quality and innovation,” says Georges Sainte-Rose-Fanchine, general manager at Caribbean Vintage.
– Best New Organic Food Product: Go4Raw – Go4Raw Bars
– Best New Organic Special Diet Food (vegetarian, vegan, free-from): Go4Raw – Go4Raw Crackers
“Winning two awards at the show has been a big success for our company, particularly as Go4Raw® only launched last year. It’s a fantastic achievement and shows that buyers at the show recognise the extremely high quality of Go4Raw®and the Bulgarian organic products we offer. Natural Products Scandinavia has been a big success for us all round. We have met lots of leading retailers, distributors, private label companies etc. We have already rebooked for next year. It’s simply the best show in Europe for natural and organic products!” says Plamen Medarov, CEO of Go4Raw®.
– The Natural Lifetime Achievement Award: Tom Johnsson & Maibritt Johnsson (Max Medica and Green Medicine)
“Winning this award is such a great honour, especially since the motivation behind it emphasised what was so important to us – our business model that focused on trust, loyalty, honesty and science. That the consumer should always get a product that gave them more than they expected. And that the retailers could always rely on us. It was such a pleasure to visit the show, which we do every year. This year was without doubt the best year. There was a great mix of products, good layout, and we loved the jazz band that popped up unexpectedly!” says Tom Johnsson and Maibritt Johnsson (founders of Max Medica and Green Medicine)
– The Organic Food Lifetime Achievement Award: Cecilia & Olle Ryegård (Ekoweb)
“This award means more to us than words can describe! We have put almost twenty years into the business, a lot of hard work, and we have done our very best. But we never thought of it like something to get applauded for or to win an award for. It is an amazing feeling to get this attention and recognition of our work. To get this recognition that our work makes a difference and plays an important role in the food sector – one of the most impacting businesses on people’s lives and our planet – is totally overwhelming to us! Thank you so much,” says Cecilia and Olle Ryegård (founders of Ekoweb)
Save the date for 2017
Natural Products Scandinavia and Nordic Organic Food Fair returns to Malmö in Sweden on 15-16 November 2017.