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Record-breaking ISM Middle East 2023

ISM Middle East concluded its 16th edition, with an expanded exhibition space at the Dubai World Trade Center on November 9. With a turnout of more than 12.800 visitors, 352 exhibitors hailing from 45 countries, 28 national pavilions, and a thriving three-day showcase, ISM Middle East 2023 reaffirmed its foothold in the MENA region.

This year’s ISM Middle East showcased a diverse range of products, including chocolate, confectionery, desserts, snack foods, ice cream, fine bakery, date products, reflecting the dynamic and ever-evolving sweets and snacks industry. “Most noticeable this year was the large increase in international buyer visits, Africa and especially Saudi Arabia, where demand for high quality, high value confections drove a 41% increase in visitors”, commented Bastian Mingers, Vice President of Trade Fair Management at Koelnmesse GmbH.

The inaugural ISM Middle East Conference also took place at the show, including the premiere of the new ISM Middle East Knowledge Hub that addressed current trend topics, innovation and business with speakers from G.A.A.S.T, German Sweets, IFF, Jannis, Mirzam and Perfetti van Melle. Another part of the ISM Middle East Conference was a high-profile panel and presentations from Innova Market and Euromonitor.
ISM Middle East announced a new schedule: starting from 2024, it will be moved from November to September, for better alignment with religious celebrations as well as the order timings of the industry. The new dates for the ISM Middle East 2024 edition are set from September 24 to 26, 2024. This move aims to meet the ever-increasing demand in the region and further expand the exhibitor base.

“Under the ISM family banner, ISM Middle East seamlessly aligns with the global reputation of the world’s leading trade fair in Cologne and has once again reaffirmed its position as the foremost business platform in the Middle East and North Africa region,” stated Oliver Frese, Chief Operating Officer at Koelnmesse GmbH, setting the stage for 2024.

The ISM Middle East New Product Showcase Award

ISM Middle East 2023 celebrated again innovation and excellence with the ISM Middle East New Product Showcase Awards. This recognition showcased innovative, newly launched sweets and snacks.

The 2023 winners include:

Category: Best Chocolate Product
Exhibitor: Gia Siming (Zhuhai) Food Technology Co., Ltd. (China)
Product: Lyophilized chocolate

Category: Best Bakery Product
Exhibitor: Me Gusto Sp. z.o.o. (Poland)
Product: Organic wafer with peanut butter and salt, without added sugar

Category: Best Snack Product
Exhibitor: Matis Bros SA (Greece)
Product: Full Energy Tahini Spread with Rice Crispies

PHOTO: Koelnmesse