IBIE: One-stop shopping

by Charlotte Atchley
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Show organizers plan a broad spectrum experience for visitors to the 2013 International Baking Industry Exposition (IBIE) to be held Oct. 6-9 at the Las Vegas Convention Center. They’ve added pizza, food safety/sanitation, tortillas, transportation, packaging, coffee and confectionary to the event. The reason? To maximize its potential value to attendees and exhibitors alike.

“The baking industry crosses over into many vertical and horizontal markets, and like many industries, companies are innovating and diversifying their product lines,” said Michael A. Beaty, chairman of the IBIE Committee and executive vice-president of supply chain, Flowers Foods, Thomasville, GA. “On the wholesale side, we’re seeing more innovative ingredients and packaging. I think our show is usually ahead of the industry, so participants can get a glimpse of where the industry is headed.”

Attendees will be able to shop and compare the new technologies that have come on the market since IBIE last convened in 2010. Then they can return to their businesses with new resources and knowledge to help them grow and become more efficient. Those at the show will be able to immerse themselves in expanded education programs and additional show floor features providing timely information and best practices for bakers.

“These new areas are aimed to serve attendees better,” said Rosalio Rodriguez, IBIE Committee member and chief of operations for Grupo Bimbo, Mexico City. “Everything from the design and content of the education program, attracting international participants, new vendors coming to the show and the way in which all the associations are coming together are going to give attendees a better overview of what’s available and help facilitate the learning process.”

The Tortilla Industry Association (TIA) is co-locating its technical seminar with IBIE for the second time, giving tortilla producers an opportunity to meet all of their show needs in one place. In 2010, attendance at the technical seminar doubled compared with non-IBIE years, and half of the participants were new to TIA events, according to Jim Kabbani, CEO of TIA. With IBIE access included in the technical seminar’s registration, its attendees also get exposure to the hundreds of vendors and displays at IBIE. “TIA members gain networking opportunities to make connections with those interested in tortillas but may not have the capabilities to produce them,” Mr. Kabbani said.

Noting the higher profile of tortillas at IBIE 2010, Mr. Kabbani said he expects that awareness of the segment and its opportunities has grown even more during the past three years.

With more comprehensive programs, exhibits, seminars and networking opportunities, IBIE opens the door to everyone in the baking industry. Tortilla producers, pizza makers, confectioners and even coffee businesses can make inroads and gain new ground on the IBIE 2013 show floor. Such a broad spectrum of interests makes Baking Expo truly a one-stop shop for the entire industry — and beyond.                 

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