We recently attended Natural Products Expo East from September 13 – 16 at the Baltimore Convention Center. In a sea of more than 1,500 natural and organic companies all doing their best to be the star, products can all start to blur together. High quality organic ingredients are the norm at this show, so it takes real innovation and creativity to stand out in the crowd.

Here are a few of my personal favorites from the event:

Favorite Product: My favorite product was the Wild Friends Organic Honey Sunflower Butter.  This product is a sweet and savory treat but has only 2g of sugar per serving (and the sugar comes from organic clover honey). The sunflower butter is made with just 4 ingredients in their peanut-free facility!

Favorite Packaging: There were a number of clever packaging designs at the show, so it’s hard to choose just one, but Misfit Juiceery was my personal favorite! Utilizing a unique color scheme and only the most essential call outs, they have a strong brand with clever positioning. Their brand mission is to tackle the food waste issue head on by using less than perfect produce!

Most Innovative Packaging Structure: The most innovative packaging format was the Avoke Spoonable Smoothie Bowl.  Avoke uses high pressure processing (HPP) to deliver fresh foods with a longer shelf life.

Most Creative Booth: Annie’s ditched the large team of employees, the samples, the sell sheets, products, etc. and replaced it with a pile of dirt! With the backdrop reading “Soil Matters More Than You Think”, Annie’s did an excellent job educating all who passed by the booth. If you were willing to get your shoes a little dusty, you could walk through the maze of dirt to learn all about it.

Until next year!

Katie Locke