Into The Expo We Go (Or “Went” Rather…)

Oct 11, 2022

LBB once again had our boots on the ground in Philly for ExpoEast 2022. We were thrilled to see some of our clients – old, new, and hopeful – and to uncover exciting insights that are impossible to ignore and will surely impact our branding efforts.

Focus on Climate Change
This year’s Expo took sustainability to a new level. There was a much greater effort to communicate how companies are reducing their environmental footprint and transforming the way they do business, including waste reduction, regenerative agriculture, BFY materials, less packaging and more. A standout is Neutral Foods, the first and only carbon-neutral milk, offsetting the methane output from cows through environmentally-friendly processes.

No Alcohol? No problem
Non-alcoholic options continue to grow, expanding the market for an alternative type of fun. Demand is increasing as consumers want the joy of happy hour without the horror of a hangover. A non-alcoholic margarita can be just as delightful, and keep away the headaches and the calories. Check out brands like Three Spirit Drinks and Lyre’s.

3 Cheers for Mental Wellness
After the past few Covid-y years, it was no surprise to see products focused on stress, sleep, focus and mood improvement. Today’s world is a lot, so witnessing/trying/discussing all these new launches on the Expo floor was a calming sight in itself. While they were walking (not exhibiting at Expo) we’re particularly fond of a mental health & wellness brand called WIO, which LBB recently created from scratch with our friends at Swanson Health Products.

CBD, Where You Be? 
While a major focus in the last several years, it seems that interest in CBD is waning. It wasn’t completely missing from the show floor, but the smaller footprint was noticeable.

Natural is Delicious
Consumers are responding to hunger by listening to their bodies and eating what they need and want. This more intuitive style of eating considers pleasure & satisfaction as much as it does health & wellness. We saw this in brands across the floor featuring decadent, luscious food imagery that doesn’t shy away from celebrating taste. Dalci is one of our faves — and it tastes as good as it looks

Functional Foods Growing Strong
Brands with functional benefits continue to launch like crazy. The market for functional food/bev is only expected to grow, confirming that consumers want added perks and a net positive effect from what they put into their bodies. We stopped short for Brainiac, which not only satisfies kids’ snacking needs, but gives their little brains the nutrients they need.

Cuckoo for Chocolate
Chocolate has arrived in more forms and with more functions than ever before. From vegan and fair trade sweets, to bean-to-bar Peruvian dark raspberry bars, to chocolate quinoa crisps, Chocolate brands are infusing new levels of creativity with tie-ins to health, charity and culture that are unique and exciting. Our bellies were particularly fond of Tonys Chocoloney.

Diversity Abounds
Representation is vital to a thriving world, so it was thrilling to connect with so many women, BIPOC, Latinx, and AAPI-owned businesses at the show. Fresh ideas, cultures, flavors, aromas and textures entertained our taste buds and made the experience anything but boring. Alaffia and Fanila Manila were a few stand outs.

Teamwork Makes the Dream Work
Brand collabs continue to be popular and add an element of surprise to our walk down the grocery aisle. Plus aren’t two brands.. err.. heads better than one? Check out Rind Snacks Cherry Lime Popcorn combo with Lesser Evil for a flavor celebration in your mouth.

And Our Fave LBB Discovery Award Goes To… Clover Sonoma’s Moon Milks! 
Adorable, fun-colored and flavored milks made us smile huge. They looked and tasted fab, and felt like true innovation. We can’t wait to bake muffins with Blueberry Lavender and pour the Turmeric Ginger in our tea. Bonus: they’re organic.

Until next time… ✌️ 

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