International organic trade fairs join forces to promote a healthier world

The Organic and Natural Products Expo (ONPE) will make its debut in Johannesburg, from 8 to 10 May. It is the first show in Africa dedicated to the organics sector and its committed to growing the industry, and as such, pursuing a healthier and fairer world.

‘With its unparalleled biodiversity of plant life, Africa is a treasure trove of sustainable and unique raw materials and products not obtainable elsewhere, and in great demand worldwide,’ says ONPE director John Thomson. ‘Our goal is not only to showcase these products locally at the event, but to create global awareness and viable and long-term export opportunities.’

ONPE has partnered with three of its international counterparts to form the groundbreaking Organic Trade Fairs Alliance.

Organic food Photo by Alisha Mishra from Pexels

The Organic and Natural Products Expo is set to showcase manufacturers, suppliers, importers and exporters of organic and natural food and beverages

Promoting health

The Alliance sees ONPE join forces with Bio-Beurs (Zwolle, Netherlands, 22 to 23 January 2020), B/Open (Verona, Italy, 1 to 3 April 2020) and Natexpo International Tour (scheduled to be held in various European venues throughout the year). The common objective is to raise awareness of, and promote a model, which is healthy in all aspects, environmentally sound, takes into account global climate concerns and is respectful of labour rights.

As such, the four fair organisers have committed to providing marketing platforms and global knowledge exchange forums in order to effectively support the ambitions of the organic agriculture sector and the organic food and products industry.

‘Being a member of the Organic and Trade Fair Alliance not only gives our South African event international credibility, but it also allows us to benefit from lessons learnt in Europe about latest trends and developments in this rapidly expanding market,’ says Thomson.

A major benefit of the Alliance is that it opens doors for African producers and suppliers to access export markets via the alliance partners’ relationships and joint promotion efforts. ‘We do the same for our international partners, and that’s what makes this alliance a winning formula,’ adds Thomson. ‘We become one network, to everyone’s benefit.’

What to expect at the expo

The Organic and Natural Products Expo is set to showcase manufacturers, suppliers, importers and exporters of everything from organic and natural foods and beverages to cosmetics, supplements, ingredients and household and gardening products.

The event will make its debut at the Wanderers Deck in Illovo, with an innovative hybrid formula that caters to trade buyers, while at the same time allowing retail sales directly to consumers.

Locally, the event has garnered the support of many influential industry bodies and role players, including the South African Organic Sector Organisation, the Health Products Association, Organic Assurance Organisation PGS, the Cosmetic Export Promotion Council of SA, The South African National Halaal Authority, Slow Food (South African Chapter), with more endorsements in the pipeline.

The Organic and Natural Products Expo will take place in Johannesburg at the Wanderers Stadium Deck, from 8-10 May 2020.