ISM 2022

ISM 2022 overcomes covid crisis to excel as confectionery’s premier trade show

By Anthony Myers

- Last updated on GMT

Visitors to ISM 2022 were required to follow strict covid measures. Pic: Koelnmesse
Visitors to ISM 2022 were required to follow strict covid measures. Pic: Koelnmesse

Related tags Ism ProSweets

As the four-day event ends, organisers said approximately 80% of the visitors came from abroad and enjoyed ‘more time for professional exchange at a high level’.

The organisers of ISM 2022, one of the top sweets and snacks trade fairs held annually at the Koelnmesse in Cologne, Germany, said it had attracted approximately 15,000 trade visitors from 96 countries.

"We are delighted that the restart of the leading global trade fair for sweets and snacks was successful amid these challenging times. This is not least also thanks to the exhibiting companies, who took part in the 51st edition of the trade fair​,” said Gerald Böse, President and Chief Executive Officer of Koelnmesse.

Of course, we weren't expecting a superlative trade fair or new records, but the fact that ISM 2022 took place underscores once more the fact that trade fairs with a clear business focus can be staged safely also in pandemic times and can offer their respective industries the urgently needed platform for the development and expansion of international business. The leading global trade fair for sweets and snacks is thus sending an important signal to the sweets and snacks industry, also to the entire trade fair business in terms of confidence and optimism​."

Hybrid digital concept

The success of this year’s event and hybrid digital concept was down to Koelnmesse's safety and hygiene policy that ensured the smooth running of the trade fair as a live event, which attracted more than 1,300 exhibitors from all over the world.

Its digital platform, ISM & ProSweets @home, offered the exhibitors, visitors and media representatives numerous new possibilities to connect and every on-site exhibitor was simultaneously represented on the platform with a digital showroom.

"Precisely now, it is important to offer the industry a central business platform, which it can use to present existing and new products to a broad trade audience. The high internationality of the exhibitors and visitors shows once again how important the event is for the global sweets and snacks industry​," said Dr Uwe Lebens, Deputy Chairman of the International Sweets & Biscuits Fair Task Force (AISM).

ism_22_sugar free crop
Healthy snacking was one of the main trends at ISM2022. Pic: Koelnmesse

Along with new innovations and new developments, this year’s exhibiting companies primarily presented healthy, natural and sustainable products. Whether plant-based, with an additional health-promoting effect or energy boosting, the new products were aimed at the changing needs of consumers.

With the next ISM scheduled to take place at the end of January 2023 under hopefully more ‘normal’ circumstances, Böse said: “The joy at personal encounters, engaging in an exchange face to face as well sampling a variety of sweets and snacks dominated this year's ISM. In addition to the high quality of the visitors, the exhibiting companies praised above all the opportunity to engage in intensive discussions with partners and customers. As was already the case at our autumn events”

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