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Inside the New York Produce Show and Conference

By
Keith Loria

Produce professionals from throughout the industry are gearing up for the New York Produce Show and Conference, which will take place Nov. 29 - Dec. 2. 

While the event will be a bit more somber this year due to the unexpected death of show founder Jim Prevor this month, the produce industry giant would have demanded the show go on, and the industry will honor his legacy. 

The second-largest produce show in North America, the New York Produce Show and Conference is a highly-anticipated event that offers attendees networking opportunities, a one-day trade show, educational micro-sessions and an inside look at the produce industry in the Northeast.

“It’s a different show than the others because it’s the only time in the New York area where we can get everyone together,” said Anthony Serafino, executive vice president and principal of North Bergen, NJ-based Exp Group LLC. “What makes it unique is it’s seven hours of getting the industry in this area under one roof and that’s why it’s the only show we exhibit at.

Gabriela D’Arrigo of D’Arrigo New York calls New York City the greatest city in the world, so being able to host people and showcase the city makes the show extra special.

“This is a cultural melting pot and a lot of people don’t get to experience that from where they’re from,” she said. “During the holiday season, it really is a magical kind of year. You get New York City in its best light, and everyone is in their best mood.”

The show is returning to its home at the New York Hilton Midtown Hotel, which is the site for many events. The hotel is located near the Museum of Modern Art, Radio City Music Hall and Central Park, making it an ideal site to experience New York City during breaks from the show.

One major highlight is the actual trade show, which will be held Dec. 1, at the Javits Center. The showcase will welcome 5,000 attendees, who will be able to meet with 400 vendors. It’s a day when a lot of business gets done in a short amount of time. Making this opportunity even more effective is the fact that buyers make up 40 percent of attendees and all exhibitors have the same-sized both, which means all companies are on an equal playing field.

The Trade Show also features activities and dining destinations. For those that want to take a break from conducting business, they can attend some of the educational seminars that run during the show. Private meeting rooms are available on the show floor, there will be opportunities to meet with influential bloggers and food journalists, and the big day will also include special appearance by sports celebrities and city officials.

Key to the future of the produce industry is the career-building event on Nov. 29. The Cornell University Future-Leaders-In-Produce Program is designed for produce executives with less than five years’ experience and informs these upcoming professionals about the rich and rewarding opportunities the produce industry offers.

On Dec. 2, the Ideation Fresh Foodservice Forum will take place at the New York Hilton. This program will give participants the chance to discover new business opportunities through innovation and tactics, and how to make an impact by learning strategic ways to encourage children to eat more fresh produce. 

In addition to the events at the New York Hilton and Javits Center, the New York Produce Show and Conference gives produce professionals the chance to get a first-hand look at the fresh produce industry in the Northeast through tours to progressive retailers, as well as some of the nation’s largest wholesale markets. Show-goers can also expand their knowledge of unique urban agriculture and specialty eateries and network with fellow professionals as they travel comfortably from destination to destination.

The tours will take place on Dec. 2. There is a registration fee, with registration beginning at 7 a.m. Destinations are Manhattan retailers, New Jersey Retailers, a AeroFarms in Newark, Brooklyn retailers and urban agriculture, Hunts Point Market, and the Philadelphia Produce Market and Wegmans.
 

Keith Loria

Keith Loria

About Keith Loria  |  email

A graduate of the University of Miami, Keith Loria is a D.C.-based award-winning journalist who has been writing for major publications for close to 20 years on topics as diverse as real estate, food and sports. He started his career with the Associated Press and has held high editorial positions at magazines aimed at healthcare, sports and technology. When not busy writing, he can be found enjoying time with his wife, Patricia, and two daughters, Jordan and Cassidy.

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