DRINKTEC 2013 SPECIAL: PETRA WESTPHAL HAILS 'BIGGEST, MOST INTERNATIONAL' DRINKS SHOW

‘Nobody Does It Better…than drinktec’: 2013 show director claims

By Ben BOUCKLEY contact

- Last updated on GMT

DrinkTec 2013 show director Petra Westphal
DrinkTec 2013 show director Petra Westphal

Related tags: Innovation

Drinktec exhibition director Petra Westphal insists that no other beverage trade show can rival it for appeal, as she reveals 2013 highlights in Munich including a greater focus on dairy and liquid foods.

With the sun set to rise on Drinktec 2013 next Monday, September 16, Westphal tells BeverageDaily.com that the show has attracted 10% more international exhibitors than the last event in 2009, and they now comprise 60% of the total number.

Organiser Messe München expects to attract 60000 visitors from 170+ countries, and on the basis of online registrations to date, Westphal says: “So far so good, the numbers look promising.”

Westphal stresses Drinktec’s strong links to industry and visits by staff to over 30 countries worldwide for meetings with all relevant show participants – beverage producers, suppliers, business journalists, and relevant trade associations.

Visitors expect innovation

Describing Drinktec as the perfect meeting point for industry, Westphal insists it is “not only biggest but also the most international show in its space for industry”​ a show where exhibitors know they must exhibit innovations.

“No other show can really attract all relevant participants from all over the world – both exhibitors and visitors – from every beverage industry sector,” ​she tells us.

“The uniqueness of Drinktec is that it gives you three in one. It’s a show for technological innovations, it’s a place to do business, but it’s also a family gathering and place to exchange ideas – it’s where the future of the industry is being forged.”

Drinktec’s advisory board includes CEOs from top firms and helps show managers keep tabs on key industry trends, Westphal explains, as Drinktec strives “to go with the flow and not stand still”

Drinktec aims to learn about industry’s needs before it knows them itself, she adds, while an overview position helps show managers meet people from every drinks industry sector worldwide.

Dairy and liquid foods focus

Relevance of show content is assured by keeping abreast of trends between Drinktec shows, but also evaluating visitor surveys taken at each event, Westphal says.

“For instance, after the 2009 show we realized that there was potential left in dairy and the liquid foods industry, and we have since focused on marketing to these two industries,”​ she explains.

Whereas in past years every fifth visitor came from these industries, Westphal says the show organisers expect numbers in this segment - see a dedicated article by my colleague Mark Astley today​ - to be higher in 2013.

“We also realized that there was a target group less in favor of Drinktec – the smaller-sized breweries (craft especially) and we also focused on attracting on them specifically,” ​Westphal says.

“Through special mailings, our meeting point for brewers, our craft brewers lounge, even a beer that we have brewed ourselves.”

Other themes for Drinktec 2013 include minimizing resource use through intelligent and innovative processes, Westphal says, cutting use of water and energy and reducing packaging thickness.

Ecology meets economics

Plant flexibility, hygenic design and quality assurance are also highly important, she adds, with all these issues and innovations at Drinktec 2013 underpinned by economic and sustainability concerns among industry and consumers.

The two concerns often work hand-in-hand, as Westphal explains: “Consumers are more concerned about sustainability, so brands have to be more and more economic, due to concerns about energy, water consumption etc. for production of a specific good.”

Another 2013 innovation is an ‘Innovation Flow’ platform where marketing and technical experts can network, she adds, since many new product launches fail due to a disconnect between these two groups, while marketing experts are also a new target group.

Finally, what was a sweetening concepts platform in 2009 has now been extended under the name ‘new beverage concepts’ to include colors, flavors and added value.

There is still time to register as as DrinkTec 2013 visitor or exhibitor by visiting the show website​.

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