Expo West 2011 – PreShow

Phew, what a day!

I choose to fly early in the morning.  I like to avoid the traffic, and I never sleep the night before a trip anyways.  Leaving my house at 4am is actually kind of ideal for me, in that respect.

Upon arriving in California, I boarded a shuttle to the hotels, and ended up sitting between a representative from Dr. Praeger’s and one from Independent Natural Foods Association (who had sat by Cynthia Kupper and Channon Quinn of GIG last year on the shuttle, and commented that this must be a sign for them to be involved in gluten-free).

Today was set up for the exhibitors in the main expo.  Man, that place was intense!  Some of the exhibitors have huge booths with hanging signs and tons of product.  I’ll definitely have to take pictures tomorrow, when everything is set up and ready.

I had the opportunity to pass out some display posters to the GFCO certified companies.  In case you don’t know what the GFCO is:

Gluten-Free Certification Organization (GFCO) provides an independent service to supervise gluten-free food production according to a consistent, defined, science-based standard that is confirmed by field inspections, in order to achieve heightened consumer confidence and safety.

I also had the chance to talk with some companies in both the Suppliers Expo and the Organic tent today, about certifying their products with the GFCO.  There are so many products here that are marketing as gluten-free.  Wouldn’t it be awesome to know that we don’t have to worry about them?

This year, at Expo West, there are 69 GFCO-certified companies with their own booths, and quite a few more in the GIG/GFCO booth #5311 – come visit me!  (See the list.)

Aside from that, everywhere you turn, you see gluten-free.  It’s awesome!

There are so many things to taste and I have to move through so quickly, I cannot take the time to write down about each product.  Instead, I will be tweeting about them – short, sweet, and onto the next one.

In case you don’t do twitter, I’ll copy my posts from the day, so you can get an idea of the cool products I’m finding:

  • Met the Dr. Praeger’s rep on the shuttle. #ExpoWest is going to be amazing. I can feel it!
  • This place is intense! There are 69 @GFCO companies represented, and #glutenfree splashed everywhere! #expowest
  • #ExpoWest Just met a sales rep from Taura Natural Ingredients who lives in the town next door to me.
  • #expowest Nature’s Path just launched a Mesa Sunrise with Raisins. #gf
  • #expowest Heavenly Organics Honey Patties are excellent! #gf
  • #expowest I love the Roasted Tomato Basil soup from Boulder Soup Works! #gf
  • #expowest Evolution Organic Strawberry Lemonade is sooo good, as is the Organic Ginger Limeade (good with vodka, too, he says). #gf
  • Preshow of #expowest, and I already have blisters on my feet. It’s my own fault, for walking a couple of miles, fast, in my boots. :(

Yeah, I really did that.  The “two large blocks” from my hotel to the convention center turned into a few miles.  At least I can say I got in a good amount of walking today.  :)

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