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Exhibition Fever – Hot Dates

Time to get hold of a brand new diary and fill it with details of all the drinks-related exhibitions around the globe this year. Here’s a rundown of the essential drinks exhibitions of 2006, by Gayle Sullivan

It’s that time of year again. Time to get hold of a brand new diary and fill it with details of all the drinks-related exhibitions around the globe in 2006. The year begins with the 20th anniversary of the biggest trade event for Loire Wines, while Vinitaly celebrates its 40th anniversary in April. Basking in the success of its quarter-century last year, LIWSF 2006 gets biodynamic and Vinexpo Asia-Pacific in May is running a special programme for sommeliers.

Salon Des Vins De Loire
Location: Au Parc des Expositions, d’Angers
Dates: February 6-8The Loire Wine Fair will celebrate 20 years this year but its raison d’être remains the same, “to be the unmissable event of a single wine-growing area: the Val de Loire.” The only French trade show that represents a single wine region, the event will highlight the Loire’s world heritage site vineyards.

The Loire Wine Fair, which attracts 9,000 visitors, has decided to highlight Japan, a country where the Val de Loire wines have achieved 19.5% growth between 2003 and 2004; and Russia, where the wines are also increasing their market share.
In attendance will be the winners of the competition for the Best Young Japanese Sommelier in Val de Loire Wines, organised since 1999 in Tokyo by Sopexa. There will also be wine tasting workshops, including some surprising combinations of Japanese and Russian cuisine with wines from the Loire. Regular shuttle buses run from the station to the Parc des Expositions d’Angers

World Wine Russia
Location: Gostiny Dvor, 3 Varvarka Street, Moscow
Dates: February 16-18
This trade-only exhibition designed for wine producers to introduce their wares
to this exciting and rapidly expanding export market.

Location: Parc des Expositions, Montpellier, France
Dates: February 20-22
Vinisud represents “all the Mediterranean has to offer under one roof”, apparently, and visitors are invited to explore the extensive Routes des Vins of the region.
The stands are to be even more representative of their individual terroirs this year and there will be many themed tasting sessions: vertical, horizontal, food/wine pairings, taste workshops and presentations of new ranges.

Useful information –
Exhibitors: 1,500 wine producers from Mediterranean rim countries
Trade visitors expected: 32,500 French and international buyers
Area: 50,000m: eight exhibition halls, two dining halls, one Palais Méditerranéan tasting hall
To pre-register:

International Food & Drink Exhibition
Location: Expo Athens
Dates: February 23-27
The 19th International Food and Drink Exhibition will include 700 companies from around the world and will attract an estimated 35,000 people from the horeca sector as well as wholesale and retail trade.

Location: Stockholm, Sweden
Dates: February 24-27
Trade fair for northern Europe and Scandinavia featuring wines, beers, spirits and ciders.

Location: Barcelona, Spain
Dates: March 6-10
The 30th anniversary of Alimentaria will attract 150,000 buyers from 100 countries, say the organisers. The show is a macro-exhibition comprising 15 product-specific shows, making it easier for people to target specific areas.

Location: Düsseldorf Exhibition Centre
Dates: March 26-28
“There are several wine fairs, but we feel that ProWein is one of the most important in the course of the year,” says Franz Röll, managing director of the Italian wine agency Vinum. “ProWein is an international meeting place for the industry with a first-class audience,” he adds. Praise indeed for ProWein and 2006 promises to build on this success. Roughly 2,750 exhibitors from almost every winegrowing area in the world will present their wines, spirits, accessories and equipment for the trade.

One particular spirits topic will be a focal point at ProWein 2006, “the colourful world of liqueurs” with an emphasis on cocktail culture.

Easy ticket purchase: Theonline shop opens in mid-January to allow tickets and catalogues to be ordered via the internet. A one-day ticket costs e22, a three-day ticket e40 and the catalogue (available approximately two weeks before the fair opens) costs e10. ProWein is open daily from 9am until 6pm.

Cape Wine Trade Show
Location: Cape Town International Convention Centre
Dates: April 4-6
The fourth Cape Wine biennial trade show will be held again in Cape Town in April. This is the show about which Matthew Jukes wrote, “Cape Wine 2004 was categorically the best organised world wine expo I have ever attended.” Certainly, anyone who has ever visited the show, held in the new Cape Town Convention Centre, less than half an hour’s drive from the spectacular Cape winelands, seems keen to return. April is the perfect time to visit the Cape; the tourists have mostly left, the days are sunny and warm, and the famous Southeaster wind has calmed.

This year WOSA is starting off the show with a one-day Wine Diversity conference. It will launch its unique biodiversity strategy and show just how unique Cape terroir is. The conference also looks at promoting the diversity of wines in a global market with well-known personalities such as Tim How of Majestic and James Herrick of Wineprophet. Futurologist, Crawford Hollingworth, will speak about tomorrow’s changing consumer.
WOSA is also organising a unique pre-tasting before the event where the trade can taste through all the Chenin Blancs and red blended wines that will be at the show, by price point. This way visitors can quickly identify the wineries they would like to visit at the show.

Location: Verona Exhibition Centre
Dates: April 6-10
It’s Vinitaly’s 40th anniversary and a prestigious exhibition of the world’s best bottles will bring around 4,000 exhibitors to the fair city of Verona for five days. You can expect intense business negotiations and top-level guided tasting sessions as well as international events and seminars.

TFWA Asia Pacific
Location: Singapore Suntec Centre
Dates: May 16-19
Travel-retail buyers mingle with luxury goods suppliers at TFWA (Tax Free World Association) Asia Pacific. A taste of the mega TWFA World Exhibition in October, organisers bill this as the leading travel-retail and duty-free event in Asia, attracting major buyers from this booming region. A high-level conference and topical workshops will set the scene for the 11th exhibition at which 200 international companies will exhibit their most innovative and exciting products.

London International Wine & Spirits Fair
Location: ExCel, London
Dates: May 16-18
LIWSF organiser, Brintex, celebrated its 25th anniversary in 2005 with a record visitor attendance of 19,024 over the three days. One feature of last year’s show, the “25th Anniversary Tasting”, was so successful that a major tasting will become an annual event. For 2006, the Top 100 Tasting feature will showcase wineries from the top 10 wine producing countries offering the best red and white wines. Chosen by a panel of top UK wine experts, the selection will be based on overall quality, consistency and value for money as well as those wines demonstrating typicity of origin. The tasting will feature individual tasting pods from the 10 countries and the top wines will be announced at the fair.

A tasting of biodynamic wines with Nicolas Joly will be one of the highlights of the second day of the fair.
For travel and accommodation information contact Marie Martinez at Baxter Hoare on +44 (0) 20 7407 5492

Vinexpo Asia-Pacific
Location: Hong Kong Convention & Exhibition Centre
Dates: May 23-25
Dedicated to buyers, retailers, wholesalers and traders in the Asia-Pacific region, Vinexpo Asia-Pacific aims to attract 7,000 visitors from around the globe, including a significant number of mainland Chinese, who no longer require visas to travel to Hong Kong. 
Organisers have not yet finalised events at the show but reveal that they are planning, as for Vinexpo Americas in Chicago in 2004, around 40 to 50 events, including wine/spirit tastings from all over the world and seminars and conferences on topics dedicated to the wine and spirits trade. Among these events, the aim is to run “a special programme dedicated to sommeliers, in partnership with great sommeliers from the Asian region”.

TFWA World Exhibition
Location: Palais des Festivals et des Congres, Cannes, France
Dates: October 23-27
The 22nd TFWA World Exhibition will welcome trade visitors from all over the world. This major exhibition and conference provides the global duty-free and travel-retail industry with a unique forum for high-level business contacts, product launches and an opportunity to bring yourself up to date on current issues in an international environment.
TFWA World Exhibition 2006 will run along the same lines as 2005 with over 450 exhibiting companies representing hundreds of brands and thousands of products offered in travel retail and duty free; over 5,000 visitors, of which two-thirds are buyers/distributors and agents for retail operators, airports, airlines and cruise lines.

UK events

Vive La France
Location: Olympia, London
Dates: January 20-22
A consumer show to shrug off the winter blues with a feast of French food, wine, property and produce. Expect top-notch cookery demos, including the brand new Taste on the Terrace food tasting event supported by Square Meal and Olive magazines.

The Bar Show
Location: Earls Court 2, London
Dates: June 6-7
Seminars at this trade event will focus on such newsworthy topics as the future smoking ban in public spaces and the extension of licensing hours. A huge central demo bar will feature creative cocktails with the latest flavours.

The Restaurant Show
Location: Olympia, London
Dates: 18-20 September
The leading exhibition catering to the premium sector of the restaurant industry.

The Wine Show
Location: Business Design Centre, Islington, London
Dates: October 26-29
The first Islington-based consumer wine event, The Wine Show, proved a hit with 11,831 wine lovers coming through the doors between Thursday and Sunday last year. 85% of 2005 exhibitors have already re-booked for this year’s show, say the organisers, so it promises to be even bigger and better than before.

BBC Good Food Show
Location: The NEC, Birmingham
Dates: November 22-26
As always, the giant food and drink BBC Good Food show rounds off the year. Last year’s show broke records in the exhibition industry by attracting a whopping 130,000 visitors over five days. Why do they come? To taste everything that’s new in the world of food and drink.  db January 2006

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