The second edition of Meat Attraction, organized by IFEMA and the National Meat Processing Industries Association of Spain (Anice), brought together 163 exhibiting companies and almost 400 brands from 16 countries around the world, and included the first edition of the "Buyers Meetings" program.
Question.- Now that two editions of Meat Attraction have been held, how would you describe their performance?
Answer.- Meat Attraction was created to meet the sector's needs of having an industry specific, vertical tool aligned with strategic plans for developing, driving and growing the Spanish meat industry's industrial fabric. This tool, created together with the sector, aims to position Spain as one of the main international hubs for meat product sales, helping position Spanish producers and sellers as world leaders due to their productive, innovative and export capacity. This is something we've achieved together. Protecting ourselves while also growing our industry.
The goal is also to provide this tool, at the service of the industry, to help position it within the food market, boosting its visibility, values and distinct benefits vis-à-vis end consumers. In this sense, Meat Attraction is a great, necessary option for the entire Spanish meat industry as it aims to help companies increase their sales. Efforts to position the Meat Attraction brand in the first two years has been excellent. There's not a single person in the industry who doesn't know the brand and isn't aware of its benefits. This third year, when there's no other industry-specific fair in Spain, makes Meat Attraction an essential event for the sector, and we expect more than 400 companies to participate and over 20,000 professionals from 60 countries.
Q.- IFEMA has created a new segment specialized in the agri-food sector. How will this affect Meat Attraction?
A.- IFEMA created a group specializing in vertical fairs for the agri-food sector. Synergies, communication, professionalism, specialization, professional community... Right now we have one of the most complete professional databases for the retail sector in the world, which will help us organize events for specific product categories.
Q.- With regard to the next edition, in 2019, we know that China will be the guest importer. What does the invitation entail?
A.- One of Meat Attraction's strategic focuses is to be an international event and we must help consolidate mature markets, position ourselves in developing markets, and strengthen the opening of new markets for specific product categories. Along these lines, it will operate strategically and intensely in Europe (UK, France, Italy, Portugal, Germany and Poland), MENA (Morocco, Algeria, Libya, the Arabian Peninsula), the Americas (USA, Mexico, Brazil), and Asia (Philippines, Japan, South Korea) among others. Given China's import capacity and the major opportunities it represents for the sector, we understand that it should have a leading role with a view to bringing institutional, business, importer and procurement delegations, while also boosting bilateral meetings between associations and business people. There will be a specific event on exporting to China held as part of Meat Attraction.
Q.- In 2019, Meat Attraction will include the 10th Global Conference on Cured Ham. What can you tell us about that event and other new activities scheduled for this year?
A.- The 10th Global Conference on Cured Ham will be held on the same days at Meat Attraction in its own auditorium in Pavilion 12, where the main fair will also be held. In addition to the scientific-technical component, there will also be a focus on markets, exports, new sales channels and marketing. The Board of Trustees is doing an incredible job to prepare a top quality, novel and exclusive program for professionals which will help attract people to the event. It's an essential event for any ham professional, in terms of learning as well as networking.
Q.- What are the objectives for this new edition?
A.- The final participation figures should reflect good work positioning the event and an effort to support companies in working towards their specific objectives and guaranteeing the maximum return on investment. To reach those 400 participating companies, it's essential to work during the first six months of the year, shoulder to shoulder with the sector, with the companies. There are three main lines of work: marketing (Market Attraction must help companies sell, otherwise it hasn't fulfilled its promise), innovation as a strategic pillar for positioning in the sector and for highlighting a business's novel features (we created the Innovation Hub with the national Accelera awards in various categories: new products, pre-prepared foods, packaging, communication and marketing, and meaTIC), and expertise (it’s a fun event with activities, presentations, conferences, etc. where each product category takes center stage within the program).
We will organize fair marketing seminars throughout Spain to help companies learn how to leverage their attendance at any fair they attend. We'll also be organizing industry forums and presentations throughout the country, together with associations and institutions. We will work to identify and capture international leads from all meat sector professionals around the world to create a community and the necessary engagement to turn them into professional visitors at Meat Attraction. To that end, we have created a platform, meatattractionnews, and professional communities online.
We also created Meat Week, which will be held from September 13th to the 22nd, to create "spaces" in Madrid to promote consumption and highlight the nutritional properties of meat. We'll promote a massive list of recipes for runners, for example, to connect the importance of eating meat with sports. We will also highlight recipes for children with an educational component. We will organize meat tapas markets within municipal markets in Madrid as well as a gastronomic route... in short, we're looking at a wide range of activities that we'll be promoting in the media. Butcher's Day will be held on the 17th to underline the essential role of these professionals in the industry.
Q.- You changed the Meat Attraction logo. Why?
A.- We wanted to style the logo and make it similar to other events in the "Attraction" family, giving it an image relating to health, diversity, quality, cuts of meat...The message and value proposal is "The event with the best meats in the world," and that will be the message we use when we promote internationally to convince people that it's the right place and the right time to see products, suppliers, innovation and new creations. The industry's event par excellence.
Q.- What can Meat Attraction offer meat companies and the ancillary industry that they can't find at other fairs?
A.- Meat Attractions is the sector's flagship event, a meeting point for excellence, a place for small, medium and large companies to receive specialized, personalized fair support. We are strategic partners for the sector and all of its companies, for which the return on investment is essential. Every exhibitor has the possibility of inviting clients or new potential clients, with paid travel costs and accommodation, from any part of the world to participate in specialized B2Meat meetings by product category, to organize presentations and cooking demos, etc.
We will work the product area and ancillary industry as two parallel events as each has its own, distinct profile of professional visitors. Sales identity and specialization.
Q.- What message would you give to companies that are thinking about participating in the fair but haven't yet confirmed?
A.- 2019 is an essential year for the meat industry, and it's the year of Meat Attraction. It's totally worth checking out. A vote of confidence for an economical format for participating that any company heading to Meat Attraction can get: 3,995.75 euros (complete pack with a 16 m2 stand), with all of the tools needed to help you sell. How much time and money would it take to visit 50 buyers, at their homes, all over the world? A lot more than 4,000 euros. And if we can get all of the buyers from around the world to come see us at Meat Attraction? It's worth it for producers to be at Meat Attraction; it's destiny.
The initial period for signing up to participate (www.meatattraction.com) ends on March 27th.