Kosherfest, one of the world’s largest events for Kosher business, is expanding this year to include not only traditionally Kosher restaurants and food service clients like nursing homes, colleges and churches but those from the wellness community, as well.
“It’s the only kosher food business-to-business show in the country. We have new product previews; we’re doing interviews with exhibitors that we’re going to publish on social media. We’re helping our food service vendors increase their presence in social media and vertical publications by doing blasts for them, to get them all the publicity and notice we can,” said Christine Salmon, the General Manager of the annual Kosherfest event.
Last year some 6,000 plus foodservice professionals shopped the show in search of kosher menu solutions and the connections. This year’s edition of Kosherfest is slated for November 14th and 15th at the Meadowlands Exposition Center in Secaucus.
Kosherfest, which has been in existence for 25 years, started out as a small business. Then its founder, Irving Silverman hired Menachem Lubinsky of Lubinsky Marketing and Consulting as president and CEO, to market it. Originally called the International Kosher Food and Food Service Trade Show, the exhibit became so big that Lewinsky realized he needed a certain kind of company to be able to manage it. That’s what brought Diversified and Lubicom Marketing together and the ultimate sale of the show to Diversified.
The partnership has proven to be a winning combination. Diversified supplies marketing and branding expertise that it has garnered through years of trade show management experience.
Lubinsky and his Lubicom team bring their unique knowledge of the kosher marketplace.
“It’s a perfect combination of two family companies,” Salmon added. “We have the processes and the people and we know how to create an atmosphere that works for both our exhibitors and attendees.”
Salmon based the show’s success on the fact that it’s the only trade show that focuses on the Kosher trends of the food service industry. “A lot of mainstream companies have gone Kosher because the food is healthier. We actually now have a mix of mainstream companies becoming Kosher and a lot of new companies that are coming in, especially in the wellness area, where the food is gluten-free and Kosher and healthy,” he pointed out. “That segment has really grown for us. A lot of it is about being fit. Kosher food fits in beautifully with that because we’ve always espoused good, healthy eating.”
Every year 30% of the show is new customers, according to Salmon. “We are literally bursting at the seams with attendees. With some 400 companies scheduled to exhibit this year, the show has become a must attend for local distributors who seek to meet potential customers and interacting with their existing ones.
This year the show has an international flavor, with a large contingent from Canada attending. “We have companies from 50 different countries that come and always, pavilions from Israel of course,” Salmon noted. “We will have special pavilions from Argentina, Brazil, Costa Rica and Japan.”
Salmon noted that Kosherfest is the one place where Kosher buyers and Kosher purveyors come together. “It’s the only place to do it. It really brings out people from all kinds of places, from every country. We had a pavilion from the Czech Republic last year. It’s amazing really.
One of the strengths of the show has been its ability to create comfort for businesses of all sizes.
“Half of our participants are from really small companies, start-ups, too. They are family-owned companies and they want to be in the mainstream. It has been so much fun to see the growth of many of our exhibitors and attendees when they return year after year. That’s where we can help,” she explained.
In addition to food and beverage items, the show floor offers a full line of food service, including point-of-sale and menu-planning systems, along with system software to advertise hotel restaurants.
Kosherfest 2017 will also feature a full slate of educational and cooking demos. A culinary competition on day two will also be held, and a presentation from Google about digitally marketing Kosher products. “We’re going to wow the audience on selling online Kosher food and beverages,” Salmon stated. “Everyone needs to come and see for yourself.”
To learn more about or register for Kosherfest, visit their website.