Visiting The Biggest B2B Food Event: SIAL Canada 2018
I attended the 2018 edition of SIAL Canada two weeks ago and it was such a great experience! I have been hearing about it for years from a close friend who attends & exposes yearly as a Montreal food company. It was interesting to visit this expo as it's quite different from what I'm used to for one big reason: it's meant for businesses and not customers. The number of exchanged business cards & upcoming meetings that happened under my eyes in less than two hours was wild!
What was in it for me as media?
Oh, so much to discover & discuss actually! The expo showcased hundreds of food makers either already available in Montreal or looking for vendors who could carry their brand new products.
It was so cool to talk about what was coming to us in the next few months and understand firsthand the challenges for brands that are still not in town. The most exciting news to me? Cauliflower pizza crusts by Montreal company Oggi Foods in the very near future!
Some of my favourite companies at SIAL this year
I've seen the Grizzly products so many times in grocery stores. After sampling their raw products, I've become a fan!
FARO coffee wasn't new to me but I was excited to see that little can of cold brew coffee! We don't have many local brands for cold brew/nitro coffee in our grocery stores and that's about to change.
Conferences & Workshops
On top of a huge expo floor, SIAL Canada featured plenty of conferences & workshops every day. The one that caught my eye was Cannabis in Food given by Karen Proper.
It was great to hear about upcoming food trends but also regulations around this new food venture considering sales should start as of July 2018 around Canada! Quebec should technically start with 15 stores and will also feature online sales.
I'm very curious to see what food makers will come up with as for edibles. The laws will be very strict, at first at least, and the packaging will be a huge challenge for companies to not attract attention aka the contrary of what food packaging is usually about.
I can't wait to see what the SIAL will look like in 2019 once everything is legal in the country. Food products are about to get interesting, eh! 😉
Have you attended SIAL in Montreal or elsewhere? What did you think of it? Don't hesitate to leave a comment below.