Exhibitors at the Naturally Good Expo, Australia’s newest trade show aimed at the natural and organic market, has been welcomed as a success, after the failure of previous organic and sustainable shows. Held in Sydney 3-4 May, the Naturally Good Expo was Australia’s first business-to-business expo focused on connecting brand owners, manufacturers, producers and suppliers with retailers and buyers in the specialist channel. The show attracted over 200 exhibitors showcasing products to Australian and international retailers and buyers. While most spoken with indicated it was a superb show and that they will be back for the 2016 edition, several told O.W.N it was expensive for a 2-day event.

“The show was a huge success and most exhibitors spoken to said they did good business,” said Andrew Jones, a director of Naturally Good Expo exhibition organizers National Media. “We’re around 70% sold for the 2016 Expo in Sydney.”

Up to mid-July, O.W.N. spoke with six Australian-based manufacturers, suppliers and wholesalers of organic and natural products who exhibited at the Expo: Belinda Lawlor of Firstray wholesalers said that the new show was good for the industry. “I believe that we picked up 2-3 new customers but it may take some time to evaluate whether it was a good investment,” she said.

First-time exhibitor at Australian natural and organic shows Andrew Terlich of At One Foods displayed its range of natural, additive and gluten-free, At One Raw Superbars. The new snack bar manufacturer is already in 200 stores in Australia.

Mr Terlich said he was happy with the show and the quality of buyers and retailers and has signed up for the 2016 edition.

Sergio Correa of Daabon Organic said that the show was better than expected, and while the company saw a lot of its regular customers, and it has not written any new business from the show, it will be back to exhibit in 2016.

Specialist supplier of South American organic foods, Olive Green Organics, found that the show was put together professionally. Despina Nikolakakos said that she was impressed and had not seen an Australian show of this calibre for a while. OGO has booked for 2016.

“We saw new buyers with a good mix of retailers from large chains to small independents,” she said. “We’ve had enquiries that have turned into regular customers but not as many as we would like.”

Antonette Golikidis of organic baby skincare company Little Innoscents said the Expo allowed it to talk with large chains and independents, including grocery and pharmacy buyers.

“We met new customers and have already done business with some and hope to with others,” she said. “There was a good mix of buyers from Australia and international (mainly Asia). The organisers did a good job putting this event together, and we’ve already booked for 2016.”

Organic foods manufacturer Ozganics/The Right Food Group was happy with the show and company president Anni Brownjohn said that it’s been a while since the industry had a proper, industry-specific event.

“The organisers presented a very good show and I believe we saw the people that we wanted to see with a good mix of existing clients and new Australian and international buyers,” she said.

The Naturally Good Expo returns to Sydney on May 1-2, 2016, at the Royal Hall of Industries, Moore Park. Look up: http://www.naturallygood.com.au/syd15/