Latest Candy, Snacks On Display At McCormick Place For 2019 Sweets & Snacks Expo

Check out WBBM Newsradio's inside look!

Jennifer Keiper
May 21, 2019 - 2:32 pm

CHICAGO (WBBM NEWSRADIO) -- The 2019 Sweets & Snacks Expo is underway at McCormick Place offering attendees everything from chocolate and savory snacks to novelty and more. 

Spanning nearly four football fields, the Sweets & Snacks Expo welcomes over 800 exhibitors showcasing different snacks and confections, including over 2,000 new products. 

“The Sweets & Snacks Expo provides the opportunity for retail success stories, both for products from new companies and new products from established companies,” John Downs, president and CEO of National Confectioners Association, said in a statement. “We are thrilled to see many returning exhibitors, as well as welcome hundreds of new exhibitors attending their first Expo.”

But before you get excited, this expo is only open for those in the industry. Attendees are able to learn about new trends, taste unique flavors, and learn about the future of the confectionery and snacking industry. The expo also hosts industry education sessions that explore how we eat and how we shop.

Sweet & Snacks Expo spokesperson Carly Schildhaue said one thing the industry is adapting to is sugar intake concerns among consumers. 

"You are going to see smaller pack sizes - package sizes that are 200 calories or less," she said. 

2019 Sweets & Snacks Expo
WBBM Newsradio/Jennifer Keiper

And speaking of being health conscious, the expo features snacks that are organic, vegan, and gluten-free. There is even a candy bar touted as "made with love not sugar."

Beyond healthy snacks, there is plenty of rich chocolate, gummies of all flavors, nuts, popcorn, chips and more - more than enough to make your mouth water. WBBM Newsradio's Jennifer Keiper caught up with some exhibitors showing off their new products. 

Kristi Schafer of American Licorice Company, based out of Laporte, Indiana, describes the new flavor of Sour Punch bites as "mango, pineapple, cantaloupe, and watermelon and there's a little bit of heat."

Sour Punch Bites
WBBM Newsradio/Jennifer Keiper

Kate Waller with German gummy-bear maker Haribo, which has its American headquarters in Rosemont, said they are featuring watermelon wedge gummies. 

"Haribo looked at the flavor trends and we know watermelon is one of the top flavors in the confectionary category in general, so we know it's on trend and a fan-favorite," she said.

Haribo display at Sweets & Snacks Expo
WBBM Newsradio/Jennifer Keiper

Much of what is on display at the expo has either just hit or will soon hit the shelves for public consumption. 

The 2019 Sweets & Snacks Expo runs May 21-23 at McCormick Place.