Getting stuck in

Every other year, the food industry descends, en masse, to the picturesque German town of Cologne to take part in the world's leading food trade fair. Ed Bedington looks at what's on offer

With more than 6,000 exhibitors from over 100 countries taking part, it is safe to say that Anuga is the biggest of its kind and meat is an integral part of the show. This year's show will see three halls dedicated to meat, with more than 800 suppliers exhibiting during the course of the show, running from 13-17 October.

With the UK still reeling from the recent foot-and-mouth outbreaks, it has never been a more important time to be out at the show, flying the flag and keeping the global trade aware of exactly what is happening in the

UK market. Visitors to the show will find themselves faced with more than 48,000m2 of exhibition space, which is fully booked, according to the organiser Koelnmesse. Some of the world's biggest meat companies will be on hand alongside a wide range of UK players, both big and small. A spokesman for Koelnmesse says: "As a result, the specialist (meat) fair will not only be one of the largest segments within Anuga, it will also be even bigger and better than the already outstanding event of 2005." The growth of the show is seeing companies return year after year, and in some cases, other companies are returning after a long absence, he adds.

New additions will be on offer and the fair will feature a group presentation from Romania for the first time. From the poultry sector, the top companies registered for Anuga Meat include AIA, Amadori, Artislach, Avipal, Cedrob, Doux, Flagship, Friki, Gepro, Heidemark, LDC, Moy Parc, Perdigao, Perutnina, Rasic, Rose Poultry, Sadia, Stolle, Tyson, Van-O-Bel, Vossko and Wiesenhof. From the meat sector, the participants include ABIEC, Allanasons, Bord Bia, Canada Porc, Dat-Schaub, Dawn, Gausepohl, INAC, Pilgrims Pride, Prime Meat, PPCS, HK Ruokatalo, Socopa, Tils, Tönnies, Van Drie Group, Vion, Vitelco and VLAM. >>

SPECIAL GROUPING

Anuga Meat will occupy Halls 5.1, 6 and 7 at the Cologne exhibition centre. The spokesman said: "This grouping enables a particularly effective subdivision of the trade show into meat, sausage and poultry areas and allows the meat industry exhibitors to create high-profile presentations of international significance within their respective competitive fields."

As one of the world's most important trade fairs for the food industry, Anuga is targeted at buyers from the trade and from the foodservice/catering market. In 2005, the show was attended by around 160,000 trade visitors from

152 countries

Within the meat sector, Koelnmesse says that innovation and quality will

be the key buzz words, with meat processing businesses from around the world demonstrating the latest deve-lopments in the sector. Convenience, health, regional specialities and

organic products are other areas that will be featuring heavily.

Quality assurance schemes will also be under the spotlight as countries and companies look to differentiate their products in a competitive marketplace.

Convenience is a key sector across the entire food industry, and the meat sector is no different. Anuga will see companies demonstrating a wide range of the latest convenient meat offers, from microwaveable marinated beef and pork steaks, to quick and easy-to-prepare meat-based meals. Sausage manufacturers, meanwhile, will be focusing on a healthy message, showcasing low-calorie and functional food offerings.

PACKAGING

Packaging is also an area of interest for the international meat industry and Anuga will be the showcase for those looking to demonstrate their latest developments, with packaging concepts to support product quality and convenience.

Peter Grothues, vice-president food of Koelnmesse, says: "Anuga has been the leading trade fair for the food sector for more than 50 years now. Its huge scope is as unique as its flair, its expertise and its sustained impact on the global food industry.

"In addition to its excellent inter-national make-up, a further trademark of Anuga is the fact that the major market leaders exhibit side by side with small and medium-sized com-panies. This ensures tremendous

variety in the product range and competent coverage of all the diverse needs of different consumer groups.

"At the heart of Anuga is the concept of '10 Specialised Trade Fairs under One Roof', which was implemented for the first time in 2003.This concept brings together 10 strong food segments as 10 separate trade fairs that are all part of the Anuga umbrella brand. They form independent, distinct and clearly defined exhibition areas, each with its own strong profile."

Grothues adds: "This concept has established itself very successfully over the last four years. One reason for this is that it ensures a clear structure and a convenient overview. It also presents each food segment in its own individual context, highlighting its personal identity and its claims of top perfor-mance and service. This is reflected in the supporting programme, whose various elements focus on the most important issues in each segment."

ARGENTINA DINES OUT

Among those exhibiting in Anuga Meat will be the Argentine Beef Promotion Institute, which will be exhibiting in hall 6.1 from stands

C-030, C-020-, D-030, D-020,

E-038 and E-020. The organisation will be occupying more than 889m2

at the show, and offering visitors the chance to sample some top quality Argentine beef.

The stand will also double up as a top-class restaurant, transforming from business units during the morning before converting at midday into the 150-seat restaurant.

A spokesman for the Institute said: "IPCVA participation will include a busy agenda of public relations and media specialised interviews as part of the advertising campaign which is currently taking place in Europe on the hotels, restaurants and catering sector. There will also be an event for buyers and importers from Europe and around the world." >>

VION

Vion will also be taking part in the show, but this time it will be focusing its exhibition on convenience foods.

Anja Kleine Wilde, communications manager with Vion Germany, says: "It might seem unusual that we're focusing on the convenience sector, but we want to anticipate and follow up on

consumer trends." She says the firm will be highlighting its latest convenience, ready-meal offers, with an added emphasis on healthy and organic products.Vion is also celebrating having scooped an Anuga Taste Award for its new meat-based snack product, Power Runner. The product will now be featured in Anuga's Hall of Innovation. Vion will be exhibiting its range from stand C60 and D69 in hall 6.1.

BRAZIL

Brazilian businesses will also be out in force at the show, with more than 100 exhibitors taking a total of 1,420m2 across the show. Companies covering poultry, for which Brazil accounts for 58.5% of global exports (2.7mt), will be on hand, alongside pork exporters, who cover some 12.5% (600,000t) of world pork export. By 2015, the country aims to supply half of global pork exports, a figure of some 3mt. And of course beef suppliers will be at the show. Brazil remains the world's largest beef exporter, and this year is estimated to send out 2.3mt, 12% more than last year, to a value of US$4.2bn. Brazil will be located in Hall 3.1, stand

C-020/D-029.

THE LONG SHADOW OF FMD

The UK industry is currently facing some tough times, with the fall-out from the foot-and-mouth crisis still somewhat unclear. While the situation maybe hazy, there's little doubt that the ramifications of the latest crisis will be casting a long shadow over Anuga for the UK meat trade.

Despite this, it's vital that the trade continues to fly the flag for UK products and get the message out to the wider industry that the UK industry is a strong contender when it comes

to high-quality meat exports. Prior to the FMD outbreak, UK exports

were outstripping all expectations. The lifting of the beef export ban saw British product back on the Continent for the first time in 10 years and the response surprised many. Exports began to climb rapidly.

Anuga is the perfect showcase for the UK to continue to build on the good work of the last year or so, and once the present crisis has passed, put the country back in pole position to get business back on track.

The English industry will be getting strong representation from the English Beef and Lamb Executive (EBLEX). The organisation's stand will play host to a record number of English red meat exporters who will use the facilities to meet and discuss future exports with importers.

The show itself is open to the trade only and the top three in visitor numbers come from the Netherlands, Italy and Belgium, key markets for UK meat exports.

EBLEX head of marketing Andrew Garvey says: "Anuga is the premier food show in the world attended by all the major importers and buyers.

"Both English beef and lamb are prized abroad for their excellent quality. Although we will still be unable to export at the time of Anuga, it is an important part of our export recovery strategy to maintain close links with overseas customers and other potential importers.

"We will be acting as a facilitator for trading meetings and making the clear statement that our industry is still in business and overcoming the foot-and-mouth outbreak in Britain." As well as providing space on its stand for exporting companies, EBLEX will be taking over a trade delegation of UK exporters on an outward mission, giving them an overview of the European market.

As well as the stand at the show, there will also

be a dinner for 200 trade guests on 15 October held at the Sport Museum in Cologne sponsored by EBLEX and the British

Pig Executive (BPEX).

The principal speaker at

the event will be Sir Michael Arthur KCMG, Britain's ambassador

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