A new benchmark for West Africa’s trade show industry was recently set by the first edition of agrofood and plastprintpack West Africa, with 1 326 professional visitors from 37 countries gracing the host country, Ghana.
This new annual event was organised by the German trade fair specialist fairtrade. To create valuable synergies for exhibitors and visitors alike the two trade shows, agrofood and plastprintpack was held in conjunction.
From 3 to 5 December 2013 visitors to the trade show for agriculture, livestock, food, beverage, packaging technology and hospitality discussed business with 81 exhibitors from 21 countries at the Accra International Conference Centre (AICC). Around 75 per cent of visitors were decision makers and 9 per cent of visitors were from outside Ghana.
Accompanied by high media attention, the official opening was held in the presence of representatives from the Ghanaian Government, various embassies, international institutions, NGOs and industry and trade.
The double event enjoyed strong institutional support from European partners, such as Advantage Austria, which featured eight exhibitors.
France officially participated through the French Association for the Development of International Trade in Agricultural and Food Processing Techniques, with 21 exhibitors.
Italian know-how was represented by twelve exhibitors and eight German technology leaders joined in.
Australia, Bahrain, Bulgaria, China, Ghana, India, Japan, Lebanon, Morocco, Poland, Portugal, South Korea, Sweden, Taiwan, Turkey, United Arab Emirates and USA also had exhibitions.
Nii Lantey Vanderpuye, Ghana’s deputy minister of Trade and Industry said in his address at the opening ceremony that the show should be seen as a significant contributor to achieving sustainable development, especially for peasant agricultural countries such as Ghana that seek to transform themselves into modern agricultural and industrialised economies.
‘As many of our customers have production sites here, Merck established a branch in Ghana just in 2013,’ adds Willi Moor, general chemicals manager at Merck. He explains that it is not only the presence of global players in Ghana that makes this market appealing, but also the many local producers interested in improving the quality of their products.