TIPA's Dante Galeazzi Talks Up Viva Fresh Expo and the Gateway to Innovations Showcase
SAN ANTONIO, TX - Have you entered your submission for Viva Fresh 2019’s Gateway to Innovation Showcase yet? If not, what are you waiting for?! The deadline to apply is just under one month away—February 20 to be exact—and because this year is the first to open up judging to ALL types of innovations, you definitely won’t want to miss your chance to be a part of the excitement!
“The early enthusiasm we’re hearing from companies about the Gateway to Innovations has been great!” said Dante Galeazzi, President and CEO of the Texas International Produce Association, the organization that puts on the Viva Fresh Produce Expo. “The Gateway to Innovations committee proposed this ‘open’ concept to bring in unique and transformative ideas that are outside the box of traditional entries. We realize this format is not as conventional, but we want to continue pushing the envelope for new ideas while highlighting this region at the same time.”
The twist this year of course is that, in addition to those traditionally awarded new products or packaging designs—that don’t get me wrong, we still love—industry members are also encouraged to submit innovations across the board, including new seed varieties, advances in production, machinery, packing facilities, and greenhouses; technology, application software, food safety, traceability, sustainability efforts, and anything else your revolutionary produce brains can think up!
All Viva Fresh exhibitors and sponsors are invited to submit whatever they deem innovative, then a panel of retail, foodservice, and produce industry judges will select 24 top-tier finalists. Those finalists will go on to be included in the Expo’s display case. All expo attendees will be encouraged to vote live from the show floor for their favorite innovation via mobile device. And the Best of Show Award will be presented on the afternoon of last day of the show, April 27.
“We want Viva Fresh to offer our attendees the most rewarding experience possible when they come to this show,” Dante continued. “The Viva Fresh committees arrange every portion of the event to provide maximum value—from the networking and education opportunities to the concentration of regional exhibitors. The idea of seeing all the new and unique ideas from the region fits perfectly in that theme. Hopefully, we end up seeing a lot of submissions that attendees would not typically see at other shows. Seed companies, for example, are talking about bringing products that haven’t made it into U.S. markets yet. Personally, I’m very excited to see what types of entries make it to the show floor.”
Applicants can submit their entries at the official application webpage here, and finalists will be notified by March 25. Don’t miss your chance to be part of the action!