The 31st Annual Natural Products Expo East, held September 21 – 24, 2016 in Baltimore, Maryland, hosted more than 1,450 brands including 450 first-time exhibitors. One of those first time exhibitors was Pachamama Coffee Cooperative, which was able to promote their farmer-owned coffee directly to natural foods buyers on a large scale through funding from the USAID Cooperative Development Program, in partnership with NCBA CLUSA.
“We are excited to take what we learned in Baltimore and continue to promote our Farmer-Owned brand to larger audiences, as we feel we have a unique product line, having not just a ethical business model, but also high-quality, specialty-grade organic coffees,” said Mollie Moisan, Director of Cooperative Development at Pachamama. This was the first time Pachamama has participated in an event of this size.
This year was the largest show on record, gathering over 28,000 community members to the Baltimore Convention Center. Natural Products Expo East is produced by New Hope Network and is co-located with Biofach America, NPA East and the Harvest Festival.
“As this industry continues its explosive growth, Natural Products Expo East has become the event on the East Coast for natural and organic brands to showcase new products and tell their unique stories. Every year there are more products unveiled in these halls that can help address challenges such as making healthy food more accessible to everyone and supporting sustainable sourcing,” Adam Andersen, Managing Director of New Hope Network, said in a press release following the expo.
Expo East is timed in early fall to offer an opportunity for brands to showcase products ahead of the new year, making it an essential event for spotting trends in food, beverage, supplement and personal care products.
Pachamama used the opportunity to unofficially launch their new packaged line, which was developed to highlight their farmer’s best coffees. They also highlighted their partners, promoting coffee sold through partner co-op Frontier, which also exhibited at the conference. Support staff from NCBA CLUSA on site got the message out to more than the co-op audience.
“I was very excited to have them with us, as they are knowledgeable about Pachamama, coffee cooperatives and want us to succeed,” Moisan said.
“We were able to capture sales and write orders on site at the event, some of which were new products for some of our existing co-op accounts, who were delighted to see us, as well as gain new accounts on the East Coast that we hadn’t had contact with in the past,” Moisan said, adding that Pachamama came away from the expo with plenty of contacts and followup opportunities.
This month, Pachamama is also promoting cooperative development by offering a special deal on their Centennial Cooperative Blend coffee, produced in partnership with NCBA CLUSA in celebration of our 100th Anniversary.