Russian Prodforum provides answers to central issues of the industry

08 / 02 / 2024

EXPOCENTRE Fairgrounds is hosting the Russian Prodforum, an annual major congress event for the Russian food market, from February 6 to 9 as part of the Prodexpo 2024 exhibition. It is organised by EXPOCENTRE AO and KVK Imperia Forum.

The Prodforum programme includes six main conferences for food suppliers: Supplier to Retail Chains, Entering Retail Chains, Private Label 2024, Food Sales through Marketplaces, Food Brand Ecosystem and Marketing and Advertising. The events are attended by buyers of federal and regional retail chains, manufacturers and suppliers of food products and packaging. Participants are given a unique opportunity to directly build an effective business dialogue among themselves and get answers to burning issues of production and trade development from leading experts.

The scale of the expert discussion was evident from the very first day of the forum. An expert and analytical session on Map of the Food Market 2024-2025: Key Changes in the Food Basket and the Balance of Power in the Period of Retail Consolidation was held within the Supplier to Retain Chains thematic block.

The experts who spoke summarised the results of 2023, which, in their opinion, should be taken into account by the suppliers in 2024 for sales growth. In particular, they mentioned such changes as the switch from yoghurt to kefir and about 13 other changes in the food basket, as well as brand mimicry and the changing preferences of the modern customer, which affect sales strategy.

Retail chains plans for the current year, introduction of new regulations and development of new formats for working with suppliers were discussed at the briefing session. The export session that followed focused the audiences attention on product exports in 2024-2025 and new opportunities for Russian suppliers to introduce their products to foreign markets in the context of restrictions and sanctions. Another expert session on Supplier to Retail Chains was dedicated to distribution sales channels.

Business consultants and expert practitioners in retail and range management spoke to the professional audience of the next thematic block on Entering Retail Chains. They tried to present a picture of the best products in 2024, talked about consumer and market requirements for the bestselling products in the chains, and also shared the life hacks that can help a supplier to achieve favourable terms in negotiations with a buyer.

The sessions of the Private Label 2024 section discussed the peculiarities of private label chains and suppliers in 2024, transformation of private label categories, tools to increase private label sales as a result of supplier and retailer work, private label development under the influence of changing consumer behaviour and other important aspects of interaction between suppliers and retail chains.

Representatives of major online trading platforms, experts in the field of product management and the creation of online food shops answered suppliers burning questions during the analytical sessions of the thematic block on Food Sales through Marketplaces. In particular, trends in the consumption of flagship food categories on online shelves in 2024 and trends in online food consumption in Russian regions were analysed.

The key topics of the Food Brand Ecosystem section were brand scaling for food producers and suppliers in the 2024 reality, the management of the SME system, and the format of food packaging taking into account modern consumer preferences and demand.

Tomorrow, on the final day of the Prodforum and the exhibition, sessions and workshops of the thematic block on Marketing and Advertising will be held. They will be conducted by leading food industry marketers, media and internet advertising specialists. They will talk about the levers for launching a stable customer flow on online and offline platforms, available tools for monitoring and analysing competitors, and will share their life hacks for marketers of food companies.

The Russian Prodforum is complemented by the Centre of Retail Chains organised by EXPOCENTRE AO and KVK Imperia Forum for retail companies. A series of training seminars is held there for retail representatives. They are conducted by more than 20 expert practitioners in the field of shop construction, development of retail formats and concepts, marketing and retail design, as well as specialists in commercial negotiations. The seminars analyse changes in the FMCG market and provide recommendations on how to optimise business processes in food retail and form a flexible retailer strategy.

The Centre of Retail Chains is traditionally in high demand at the exhibition. It offers an effective format for direct supply negotiations between food and beverage suppliers and department heads and commercial directors of more than 100 federal, regional and local retail chains.

Press Service, EXPOCENTRE AO