ATLANTA — The annual International Production & Processing Expo — the major trade show for the poultry, egg, meat and feed industries — concluded Thursday with a record number of exhibitors offering the latest in technologies, equipment and services for the industries.
More than 1,300 exhibitors occupied more than 465,000 square feet of space in two halls of the Georgia World Congress Center.
The yearly show is comprised of three integrated trade shows — International Poultry Expo, International Feed Expo and International Meat Expo — sponsored by the U.S. Poultry & Egg Association, American Feed Industry Association and North American Meat Institute.
John Starkey, president of USPOULTRY, said, “The partnership that we’ve formed to transform the ‘poultry show’ into the IPPE representing not only the poultry industry, but the meat and feed industries as well, has been tremendously successful with attendees and exhibitors alike.”
Starkey noted that with the combined show, exhibitors at the yearly Expo has risen from 803 in 2009 to 1,301 in 2016.
USPOULTRY recognized three companies that have been exhibiting for 55 years or more at the International Poultry Expo — Baader Linco and Cobb-Vantress for 60 years and Hubbard LLC for 55 years of exhibiting at the IPE.
Show operators also said that they expected the final count of show attendees to be in the neighborhood of 30,000 people looking at the latest products and services offered for the feed, meat and poultry industries.
In addition to the trade show, the IPPE also provided numerous educational sessions addressing issues of concern to industry personnel representing all aspects of the production and processing line.
Revenue from the show helps USPOULTRY fund research projects throughout the year.
“The success that we’ve had building over the last few years has allowed us to invest more back into the industry, including a recent allocation of over half million dollars for critical avian influenza research,” Starkey pointed out.
He added, “The other aspect of our recent success is we’ve been able to invest more in our future: bringing more students than ever to the show and bringing the top 10 FFA poultry teams to the Expo.”
This year, 600 students had the opportunity to meet with industry leaders and interview for jobs or internships with numerous companies.
The Expo also offered a chance for various related associations to hold meetings.
One group — the American Historical Poultry Society — inducted four industry members into the Poultry Hall of Fame for their contributions to the poultry industry. They were Shai Barbut, professor, University of Guelph, Canada; Dr. Glenn W. Froning, professor emeritus, University of Nebraska; Andrew R. Rhorer, National Poultry Improvement Program and current president of Global Poultry Improvement LLC; and Yvonne Vizzier Thaxton, professor emerita, Mississippi State University.
The IPPE also presented attendees with some special entertainment.
The fourth annual Chili Cook-off featured a group of Atlanta chefs who prepared their favorite chili recipes with beef, pork and chicken. Miss America Betty Cantrell, who is also Miss Georgia, was on hand to congratulate the chefs and also sang at the event.
Cantrell also greeted attendees at the Welcome Reception held at the Georgia Aquarium.
A “Creations with Chicken and Tantalizing Turkey Tips” demonstration featured experienced chefs showcasing healthy and convenient ideas on how to cook poultry.
The Hot Dog Toss presented a new twist on the classic bean bag toss of getting the bean bag through a hole in a board to win points. In this version, the hot dog took the place of the bean bag
The annual International Production & Processing Expo will return to Atlanta and the Georgia World Congress Center on Jan. 31-Feb. 2, 2017.