Marketplace International 2018 kicked off on Monday 9th April, a global food buyers event organised by Bord Bia to drive new business for Ireland’s agri-food industry.
Over 550 food buyers, from 50 countries around the world, will participate in the week-long trade development event, the largest of its kind ever to take place in Ireland. Bord Bia is targeting €40m worth of new business as a direct result of this year’s event.
The attending food buyers include representatives from Australia, Algeria, Bahrain, China, Indonesia, UAE, Japan, Singapore, Saudi Arabia, and South Africa. Interest from UK buyers has remained strong, with close to 50 in attendance.
The registered buyers represent every sector of the industry including for dairy, beef, lamb, pigmeat, alcohol, seafood, prepared foods, grocery, bakery, confectionary & snacks, and specialty foods.
A team of Bord Bia specialists, including its network of 13 international offices, have been preparing for Marketplace for over six months, including providing a training programme for the 185 companies to ensure they were adequately prepared for this year’s showcase.
300 of the international visitors will also embark on 28 different three day group itineraries organised and hosted by Bord Bia. The sector-focused itineraries will allow buyers to see Irish farms, factories, retail stores and manufacturing facilities all around the country to showcase the Irish food and drink industry.
On Thursday, all international visitors will reconvene in the RDS Dublin, for 5,000 pre-arranged one to one meetings with 185 Irish food companies.
Bord Bia CEO Tara McCarthy said: “Initiatives such as Marketplace have enabled the sustained growth of Irish food and drink exports for the past eight years, culminating in a record value of €12.6bn in 2017”.