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January 14, 2002

3 Min Read
SupplySide West Attracts 3,888 to World's Largest Executive Conference on Healthy, Nutritional Products

SupplySide West Attracts 3,888 to World's Largest Executive Conference on Healthy, Nutritional Products

Missthe Event? See the photos here

Almost 3,900 top executives from dietary supplement, food, pharmaceutical and cosmetic companies gathered Nov. 28 to 30 for the 5th Annual SupplySide West trade show and conference at the Sands Exposition Center and Venetian Resort Casino in Las Vegas. The SupplySide West exhibit hall consisted of 365 companies occupying more than 500 booths."I always look forward to SupplySide West," said Callista Maclean, product development manager for Nature's Life. "It's the best trade show of the year for people who source raw materials and services. The one on one interaction builds a great rapport, and I totally enjoyed the events."Exhibitors echoed the sentiments. "The show was absolutely excellent," said Dick Beitel, vice president of sales for Pharmachem Laboratories, the parent company of American Ingredients. "This was the first time we had exhibited, through our association with American Ingredients, and we had high attendance and great business possibilities. Our seminar presentation had fantastic turnout. It's just the number one show out there."The show was up in attendance and exhibiting companies by about six percent over SupplySide West 2000, which given the continuing repercussions of the terrorist attacks on business and travel, was seen as a major accomplishment. "SupplySide West was a success in every way," said Jon Benninger, group publisher of the Natural Products Division at Virgo Publishing. "I think people were happy to participate in a busy show given the current economic and international situations. For many, the show was a reaffirmation that we can and will persevere."To start off the show, Virgo hosted the 5th Annual SupplySide West Golf Classic, sponsored by B&D Nutritional Ingredients. Almost 180 duffers participated in the event at Stallion Mountain Country Club, taking up two courses. The winning foursome of Lee Covert, Paul Graham, Dave Hewitt (all with Dupont Protein Technologies) and Eric Barber (with Valentine Enterprises) scored a 61 (11 under par).Networking opportunities abounded off the show floor. More than 300 executives from all over the world gathered for the International Welcome Reception sponsored by Capsugel. On Thursday, the Opening Night Reception sponsored by Roche Vitamins attracted nearly 2,500 people for an evening of excellent food, drink and entertainment. The closing Appreciation Party, sponsored by Pharmline, was held on the show floor at the end of the day Friday and saw industry members enjoying a hosted bar and treats such as pasta, fajitas, pizza and Sabrett hot dogs.The SupplySide West seminar program, sponsored by Cargill Health & Food Technologies, proved very popular with participants, with packed rooms and hot questions. Highlights included a session with FDA's John Foret on regulatory issues in the industry, a panel discussion on crisis management and risk reduction, and a Q&A forum on the future of functional beverages. The keynote address, delivered by author/actor Ben Stein, was sponsored by Degussa BioActives, and drew a standing-room-only crowd of more than 450 people. Besides giving a truly positive and motivational speech, Stein noted he was no novice in the supplement arena. "If everyone consumed as many vitamins and dietary supplements as the Stein family, this industry would be as big as the automobile industry," he proclaimed.The response to the keynote, and the show, proved heartening for those looking for a rebound in a slow industry. "Our industry faces some incredible challenges," said Bill Ramsay, president of B&D Nutritional Ingredients. "But this industry is blessed with some bright and talented people. An event like SupplySide West serves as a reminder to me of all that is good about this industry, and for that I am grateful. We enjoyed participating in the show both as an exhibitor and a sponsor.""SupplySide continues to provide the venue for the executives in the industry and these executives were making things happen," concluded Peggy Jackson, publisher of the Natural Products Division at Virgo Publishing. "We needed to get that buzz and energy back into an industry show and SupplySide West did just that."

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