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2021 Edition Concludes With High Marks

Nov 15, 2021

PROCESS EXPO returns with the full spectrum of equipment and technology for the food and beverage processing industry.

PROCESS EXPO closed out its 2021 edition last week on a high note with a show floor of satisfied exhibiting companies and attendees alike.

Held November 2 - 5 in the South Hall of the McCormick Place Convention Center in Chicago, IL, PROCESS EXPO represented a return to in-person events for many since COVID-19 put the brakes on tradeshows over 18 months ago. The eagerness of buyers was apparent from the start, with a lively crowd gathered at the entrance on opening morning.

The event connected suppliers of machinery, equipment, technology and solutions to a diverse gathering of C-level executives, engineers, distributors, plant operators and other key industry buyers and influencers, and exhibitors commented on the high quality of visitors seen throughout the event:

“The quality of leads coming in specifically from this show has been very refreshing,” said Kate Rome, President, Rome Grinding Solutions. “Everyone’s well prepared, it’s like they’ve been waiting. They know what they need, so it’s been nice to have those interactions,” she said.

“This is exactly the target market that we want, these are the people that we want to be talking to,” said Blake Childers, Marketing Manager, Hoosier Conveyor Company. “It’s a great place to come and meet people, rub shoulders with the big companies, and be able to actually get our product on their floor,” he said.

“We are very happy with the interactions we’ve had, this is our very first time [exhibiting at Process Expo] and I think we’ll do it again” said Mathias Konne, Business Development and Marketing, Staubli.

Diverse Product Groups & Award Winning Innovations 

Fulfilling the promise of expanded product discovery across the show floor, the event highlighted a broad range of machinery, products and services featuring highly innovative technology and new advancements across 8 product categories. The horizontal nature of the platform offered direct access to equipment serving the needs of the every industry sector.

The biennial Innovation Showcase competition highlights the top technological advancements in processing for all industry segments in food and beverage. This edition's winners were selected by subject matter experts in academia from the nation’s leading food science and technology programs.

Category Winners:

  • Bakery, Grains, Nuts, Seeds, Snacks: Hygienic Spiral Conveyors, SideDrive Conveyor Company
  • Beverage, Coffee Blends, Juices: Single Hygienic Quarter Turn for All Enclosure Door Sizes, Custom Stainless Enclosures, Inc.
  • Cheese, Dairy, Ice Cream, Milk, Yogurt: HANI Clamp-On Temperature Sensor, OMEGA Engineering
  • Confectionery, Candy, Sweets: Wireless & Batteryless Sensors, Everactive
  • Meat, Poultry, Seafood: KSL/DV, Grasselli SSI
  • Pet Foods, Treats: Smart Imaging System, P&P Optica
  • Prepared Foods, Fruits, Vegetables: Brite Belt Scrubbers, Brite Belt

All category winners were entered to win the People's Choice Award, in which show-goers cast their vote for their favorite innovation. This year's winner was OMEGA Engineering for their HANI Clamp-On Temperature Sensor, which uses a patent pending platform comprised of multiple sensors and a proprietary algorithm to achieve the same accuracy and response times as state-of-the-art invasive sensors without the cost and risk.

One-of-a-Kind Production Lines

As the only industry event running fully functional production lines, PROCESS EXPO 2021 showcased the manufacture of food products in the Meat, Bakery and Prepared Foods categories. The demonstrations took visitors throughout the entire process, offering a unique experience to see technology in action, from raw ingredients to final packaging.

“We build the Production Lines with the intention of highlighting how equipment from a variety of OEMs can connect and work together efficiently, which is something you can’t get anywhere else on your buying journey,” said Andy Drennan, Senior Vice President, Food Processing Suppliers Association (FPSA).

“Ultimately we want to enable customers to visualize how they can assemble or upgrade their own production facilities, leveraging the cutting-edge technology that different suppliers deliver,” he said.

2021 Production Line participants included: AmTrade Processing Solutions, Anritsu, Blentech, CMC America, Dantech Freezing, Delkor Systems, Douglas Machines, EnSight Solutions, Handtmann, Harpak/ULMA, JBT, Linde, Mettler Toledo, Multivac, Nothum Food Processing Systems, Provisur Technologies, Prospection Solutions, Quantum Topping Systems, Senius/Naegele, XLT, and Wilevco and were sponsored by A.C. Legg, Burns & McDonnell, CII, The Dennis Group, G-Free Di Tobia, Idan Foods, Inductive Automation and RFW Construction.

Expansive Educational Content

One of PROCESS EXPO’s main objectives is to facilitate the exchange of information and insights to help industry professionals move their businesses forward. In addition to discovering a wealth of new products and technology on display, attendees were able to participate in a strong line-up of educational sessions, both on and off the show floor.

PE University took a deep dive into a host of thought-provoking topics, offering insight and solutions into some of today’s most challenging subject matters – from post-pandemic processes and trends in the industry to the future of food.

Food for Thought brought engaging presentations and quick-fire Q&A to standing-room only audiences on the show floor. Addressing topics like food safety, cannabis trends, alternative protein and more, industry experts left attendees with real world takeaways and implementation hacks to jump-start

Networking & Career Advancement Opportunities

As the meeting place for the food and beverage processing industry, Process Expo provided a wealth of networking and career advancement opportunities to professionals at all levels. This year’s event included specialized Meetups for those working in Food Safety, Packing and Technology, and Young Professionals.

In addition to meetups, FPSA’s Women’s Alliance Network hosts its biennial breakfast at Process Expo to honor women who have made strides in professional development and an impact in the industry overall. The Red Circle Honor, presented during the event, highlights those that have had a positive impact on women’s careers and gender balance in the food and beverage industry. This year’s Red Circle Honor recipients were:

  • Rising Star — Morgan Larson, Handtmann
  • Innovation and Inspiration — Sarah Hurley, Marlen
  • Career Excellence — Kathi Gilleland, Marlen
  • Achievement in Developing and Promoting Women — Rome Grinding Solutions

Looking to the Future

Process Expo will return to Chicago, October 23 – 25, 2023, with an expanded global reach and greater international representation for both exhibitors and attendees in the post-COVID landscape. Excitement around the upcoming event has already started to build, with the introduction of the new look and logo announced at this year’s edition.

Gather additional information on general show details, special features and networking opportunities via the website at

Press contacts:
Kim Porter | Tel: 678 732 2435

Ali Rosenberger | Tel: 678 732 2428

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Background information on Food Processing Suppliers Association

The Food Processing Suppliers Association (FPSA) is a global trade association serving suppliers in the food and beverage industries. The Association's programs and services support members’ success by providing assistance in marketing their products and services, overall improvement in key business practices and many opportunities to network among industry colleagues. Programs and services to achieve these objectives include PROCESS EXPO (industry leading trade show), electronic media marketing, education, market intelligence, research, and advocation of critical industry issues such as food safety, sanitary design of equipment, and global trade. FPSA members are organized in vertical industry councils which focus on specific needs and concerns that are unique to each industry sector. FPSA councils currently represent the Bakery, Beverage, Dairy, Pet Food, Prepared Foods and Meat sectors.

Background information on Messe Frankfurt

Messe Frankfurt is the world’s largest trade fair, congress and event organizer with its own exhibition grounds. With more than 2,600* employees at 30 locations, the company generates annual sales of around €733* million. We have close ties with our industry sectors and serve our customers’ business interests efficiently within the framework of our Fairs & Events, Locations and Services business fields. One of the Group’s key USPs is its closely knit global sales network, which extends throughout the world. Our comprehensive range of services – both onsite and online – ensures that customers worldwide enjoy consistently high quality and flexibility when planning, organizing and running their events. The wide range of services includes renting exhibition grounds, trade fair construction and marketing, personnel and food services. Headquartered in Frankfurt am Main, the company is owned by the City of Frankfurt (60 percent) and the State of Hesse (40 percent).  For more information, please visit our website at: 

* preliminary figures 2019.

Messe Frankfurt Inc. is a subsidiary of Messe Frankfurt.  Headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia, the company produces ten shows within the United States, Canada and Mexico. The North American portfolio includes Texworld New York City, Apparel Sourcing New York City, Home Textiles Sourcing, Techtextil North America, Texprocess Americas, The Clean Show, INA PAACE Automechanika Mexico City, Waste & Recycling Expo Canada, and PROCESS EXPO.  For more information, please visit our website at

Messe Frankfurt international trade fairs for the food industry

Messe Frankfurt organizes trade fairs relating to food processing all over the world. They are grouped under the heading of ‘Food Technology’. Currently, five events belong to this portfolio. In addition to IFFA, Leading International Trade Fair for the Meat Industry in Frankfurt am Main, and Tecno Fidta, International Food Technology, Additives and Ingredients Trade Fair in Argentina they are Meat Pro Asia in Thailand, Modern Bakery Moscow, International Trade Fair for Bakery and Confectionery and Salon du Chocolat, Moscow. 

Further information about the events of Messe Frankfurt in the field of food processing at:

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