The National Confectioners Association (NCA) concluded its annual All Candy Expo yesterday in Chicago. Sponsored by the NCA, the All Candy Expo boasted 2,000 new products from nearly 500 exhibitors from 75 different countries.
Top trends driving product releases of 2007/08 included: new flavor fusions focusing on the variety of new profiles available; international influences that are becoming more relevant in the U.S.; artisan palate, which focuses on more sophisticated and specialty products; sweet benefits, a category of tasty treats that also offer healthy incentives and added nutritional value; simply sugar-free, which focuses on new sugar-voided products that offer the same taste as traditional flavors; originally organic, for those looking to something a little more natural; reinventing classics, a category that focuses on giving fan favorites an updated look; the dark side, which takes a look at the growing demand for dark chocolate; and child’s play, a breed of “interactive” candies which encourages eaters to play with their food.
The event drew over 20,000 visitors to the windy city to sample gums, candies and snack foods. The largest confectionery show in North America, the NCA made history by adding savory snacks to the show for the first time in its the 11-year history.