Hurdles, when looked from afar, turn out to be great stepping stones.
Three weeks before IFEX 2009, CITEM wrote to us to request that we move booths, as an association wanted our spot. Nope, chose that location early and paid for. I got to ingress early, and the association's people were there seating in my booth. I talked to CITEM and yes they said I will be allowed to ingress in my booth. I didn't want to be at odds with my neighboring booths as they will occupy my perimeter...so I took a walk and looked at the location from afar. Talked to CITEM and CENTREX for a solution. Will they allow a booth by the post? Right smack in the middle? Oh they said YES!
See how well it worked for us.
This year's IFEX met our needs. Much like last year's event, we were seen by good media mileage and food industry people. Nana Ozaeta and her staff from F&B World was there to visit us. We gamely took pictures of the framed article of Sunshine featured in their magazine in Jan 2009, that we display prominently. Growers and prospective farmers saw us there too. Restaurants talked to us. Government agencies matched us with inquiries.
The food trade shows are meant to really market our growers who raises the our Sunshine Chickens. We are there to turnover inquiries and sales.
What was the highlight of the show for me? The one that made me proud?
A lady walked up to me and said she wanted to try the chicken for her restaurant. I asked her location and immediately got a brochure and wrote down the name of my grower in that area. As I handed it to her....she smiled right away and said that the grower was her cousin!
They hooked up right away for initial meetings and talks between me and grower.
Why am I happy? Because there was no questions asked, they were hooked up right away. I am sure, it proved my point about the referrals and marketing we really do for our growers. It was very obvious and my grower must have felt it too.
Felt like IFEX already served my purpose, if only that one transaction is closed....btw, its not a small one :)
Aside from our Sunshine growers, I also keep our booths open to friends whose products I believe in carrying side by side with mine. Kablon Farm and Alaminos Goat Farm was with us this show. I also invited our e-group members of natural farming in the Philippines....but maybe they will not be shy next shows :) It is an earnest and serious invitation with no strings attached, to market with us.
Sad Andry Lim wasn't around....we were able to take a picture of three (3) cover stars of recent Agriculture Magazine editions. Jojie represented Andry Lim, Rene Almeda of Alaminos Goat Farm and of course, Doc Rey of Sunshine Chicken.