NEW YORK -- The connection between the supermarket industry and the nation's specialty foods will grow stronger in 2002, when the Spring Fancy Food Show in Chicago will take place at the same time as the biggest supermarket trade show, held by the Washington-based Food Marketing Institute.
The two shows will be held separately, in different venues, from May 5 to 7 that year, but attendees will be able to register for and attend both shows.
Crossover without a dual registration will be permitted on the show's final day.
Although this was announced at this year's FMI show in May, it received more attention during the National Association for the Specialty Food Trade's Summer Fancy Food Show, held here last week. One buyer from a large specialty-food shop told SN the plan is drawing controversy, but Ron Tanner, NASFT vice president for communications, said the decision, made by the NASFT board of directors, was unanimous.
The new plan means that the NASFT Spring Fancy Food Show will take place about five weeks later than usual, bringing the Spring and Summer Fancy Food Shows closer together.
"FMI is the show where decision-makers from the supermarket industry go," said John Roberts, NASFT president. "We think they will be eager to see what specialty-food manufacturers, importers and distributors offer that can make their stores more appealing for consumers."