MorePeople joined Fruit Logistica at the beginning of April in Berlin, catching up with clients and keeping on top of all the latest innovations, products and services the show has to offer. The show provides us a great opportunity for us to meet a number of clients in one location.
Fruit Logistica takes place in Berlin and covers every sector of the fresh produce business at every link in the international supply chain. On average 3,300 exhibitors and 72,000 trade visitors attend Fruit Logistica each year.
Fruit Logistica analysis sees healthy eating and technology (replacing labour) as the two biggest changes coming in the fresh produce market and analysts believe online will remain strong and the catering sector's use of fresh produce will return to pre-pandemic levels, though it will take longer for business travel to get back to where it was pre-2020. Sales of products such as fresh cut fruit may stay lower too as people continue to work from home and buy less lunch/snack convenience food.
Will joined Richard and Morten this year and it was his first visit to the show.
Three observations from my first visit …
It wasn’t as big as normal but at least it was still on!
It was, albeit my first time in Berlin and attending Fruit Logistica so I had a mixture of anticipating the unknown whilst preparing myself for the sheer scale of the event that colleagues / clients had attempted to illustrate to me. To say it is vast is possibly an understatement. That being said it was certainly noticeable how few people were milling around on Tuesday and the empty halls were difficult to ignore. Moving it from earlier in the year to April had no doubt meant exhibitors and visitors couldn’t attend
However, … not only did the organisers do a good job of its continuity, we were thankful that it was indeed live at all.
It doesn’t need me to point out just how resilient the food / fresh produce sector is but it certainly struck me that the event going ahead and in full swing by the Wednesday, was the apotheosis of the sector.
It was fun!
Although to synonym the Fruit Logistica ‘exhibition’ with carnival might be a stretch, it is really a celebration of fresh produce and the atmosphere we enjoyed whilst meeting clients was not only welcoming but positive and cheerful!
The team have definitely tired of me, Morten and Rich saying “when we were in Berlin…” but we certainly haven’t! A lot of our meetings were undoubtably serious and there were by definition ‘catch ups’ so one can only imagine the true measure of importance between customers and suppliers for those three days.
Don’t mention the War… for talent.
One major thing occurred to us as a common theme amongst clients was just how much of a candidate led market it is at the moment. I have heard the term ‘war for talent’ quite a few times recently and it was very evident through meetings we had. Most if not all clients seem to be facing the same challenge (amongst everything else going on in the sector!) – not only are there more jobs out there than there are ‘good’ candidates but they are guarding all the locks and holding all the keys ... so to speak.
It is so seldom at the moment that a candidate doesn’t have more than one opportunity to chose from, they’re counter offered by their current employer and they can inflate package demands.
What are we to do? Well, Greg Savage recently posted on LinkedIn with some typically pertinent insight.
We now have to consider the importance of selling to candidates, reacting to talent faster but slower to understand candidates. Whilst condensing the interview process, we need to work harder to understand motivations. To quote him directly; “it’s no longer about you choosing them, it’s more them choosing you”!