ISM 2014
Buyers check out new products at ISM 2014. 

The 45th ISM - the International Sweets and Biscuits Fair, slated for Feb. 1-4, 2015, is adding themes to its show, and expanding it traditional focus, which is on confectionery and snack items.

Next year, the event will feature theme areas such as “snacking” and “to-go” to include sectors to encompass areas of stores that are usually right next to the confectionery and snack items.

While this will serve the needs of buyers who often bundle different neighboring segments, it will also reflect consumer shopping changes.

For example, many shoppers are looking for “in-between” meals or “to go snacks” and for them, sweet and savory are equally important.

“With its extended range of products, the ISM reflects this present consumer situation and at the same time offers the exhibitors and visitors even greater cross-sector synergies and more diverse sales opportunities,” the show says.

So while the central focus of the ISM is still cocoa, chocolate, chocolate products, fine bakery products, snack foods, sugar confectionery, ice cream and pastes, ISM 2015 also is planning to add read-to-serve savory snacks, fruit and vegetable snacks and breakfast and frozen sweets to its exhibits.

For example, fruit bars and vegetable crisps or snacks, which contain fish or meat, can now be exhibited at the ISM, as long as they are packed in ready-to-serve packaging.

Energy or fitness bars, coffee and tea as well as chilled or frozen confectionery will also belong to the ISM's portfolio in future.

Specifically, the new segments will include:

  • Fruit and vegetable snacks, smoothies
  • Fish and meat snacks in ready-to-serve packaging
  • Energy and fitness snacks
  • Breakfast snacks, incl. coffee and tea
  • Confectionery at all temperatures, also chilled and deep-frozen

Those sectors join the previous line up of:

  • Cocoa, chocolate, chocolate products
  • Sugar confectionery
  • Fine bakery products
  • Snack foods
  • Ice-cream and pastes.

And, in an effort to help buyers, all of the exhibitor database will now be broken down into “trend themes,” which help those searching for particular products.

The new trend themes include:

  • Halal
  • Kosher
  • Bio
  • Fair trade products
  • Sugar-free
  • Allergy-friendly
  • Functional
  • Artisan Production
  • Private labels
  • Limited editions
  • Impulse Packages

About 1,400 suppliers from 70 countries and about 35,000 industry buyers from 140 countries are expected to attend the ISM. With an 84 percent share of foreign exhibitors and a 66 percent share of foreign visitors, the ISM is one of the most international trade fair events in the world.

Meanwhile, The ProSweets Cologne, the international trade fair for the supply industry of the confectionery business, comprising of over 300 suppliers, will be staged parallel to the ISM again in 2015. Together with the ProSweets Cologne, the ISM covers the entire value chain of the confectionery production and sales business in one location at the same time — a constellation that is unique in the world.

The ISM is organized by Koelnmesse and the International Confectionery Fair Taskforce, the AISM, are the conceptual sponsors of the event.