Food & Drink Expo 2002 is the place for retailers looking to increase their organic ranges ­ almost 50 suppliers will be promoting new products and services at the show next March. They will have their own distinctly branded area, the Organics Village, where they can catch the eye of mainstream buyers and specifiers who will be able to sample both raw ingredients and prepared foods. These range from baby foods to cook-in sauces, fresh fruit and vegetables to whole foods, fruit juices to pickles and salsas to meat products. "People come to Food and Drink Expo to place orders and research additions to their ranges," explained events director David O'Beirne. The Soil Association is encouraging licensees ­ those who qualify for the organic stamp ­ to exhibit, and will also have a stand offering advice on converting to organic production and certification. "The Organics Village is a great platform to air our wares to potential buyers. The more support producers have to get everyone eating organic the better," said the Soil Association's events and sponsorship manager Dom Lane. The Organic Food Federation will also have representatives in the Organics Village, because of the opportunities to promote to non-organic companies and the food services side of the industry. "It is good to have both non-organic and organic suppliers together as this brings in a bigger crowd and the highlight on organics creates curiosity," said the Federation's technical manager Richard Bosly. Exhibitor Queenswood Natural Foods has been involved in the organics movement from its beginnings almost 20 years ago. MD Roger Cooze comes to the show because he is interested in moving organics forward. "We still have a lot of demand for non-organics but if we can get the price difference under 10% and have good suppliers, they don't mind us just doing organic in a range. Food and Drink Expo is organised by William Reed, publisher of The Grocer, and will be held at the NEC Birmingham on March 17-20. {{NEWS }}