April 2023 Newsletter 

News from Spring Food and Beverage Trade Shows

With winter retreating, food and beverage professional associations began welcoming manufacturers, suppliers, and students at venues across North America to discuss topics affecting innovation and in-market success. 

The FlavorSum team joined conversations at several Spring events, traveling coast-to-coast from British Columbia to Quebec in Canada, and from Lancaster, Pennsylvania, to Austin, Texas and Secaucus, New Jersey, in the United States.   

Thank you to the event organizers at the BCFT and CIFST-Quebec Supplier Sessions, the PMCA Production Conference, SupplySide East, and the Ice Cream Technology Conference! You delivered insightful education, facilitated purposeful connections, and infused excitement and fun into the food and beverage industry, and we appreciate the opportunity to participate. Read on to discover what we learned! 

BCFT Supplier Night

After a COVID-driven hiatus, members of the BCFT eagerly reunited with colleagues in beautiful and bustling Burnaby, British Columbia. More than 120 exhibitors engaged with over 400 attendees during the ½-day session at the Delta Burnaby Conference Centre. Hot topics included plant-based meats, candy-ceuticals (especially in the fast-growing gummy format), and nutritional beverages. Interest is high in solutions that deliver cleaner labels to consumers, and brands are turning to natural and organic solutions to address food and beverage customers’ desires. People also talked about the continued momentum behind supply chain transparency and brands’ social responsibility initiatives. Educational sessions focused on plant-based trends, clean-label beverage colors, and formulations to support healthy aging. 

BCFT planners are targeting an early March date for the 2024 Supplier Showcase. For more information about the BCFT Section, connect with the organization here.

CIFST-Quebec Supplier Fair

On April 13th, FlavorSum’s Canadian team traveled to Saint-Hyacinthe, a city in southwestern Quebec east of Montreal on the Yamaska River. Saint-Hyacinthe’s link to agriculture and food production earns the city the nickname of the ‘Agricultural Technopolis of Canada.’  The city setting was ideal for the CIFST-Quebec section’s annual Supplier Fair at the Espace Ste-Hyacinthe from 2 to 6 pm. More than 450 attendees visited with almost 100 exhibitors to discuss food and beverage development opportunities.

The afternoon event provided an exceptional opportunity to discover the latest trends and innovations in the Food industry. FlavorSum showcased four vegan gummies inspired by consumer insights and a refreshing beverage designed to deliver the complex taste of a cocktail without alcohol.  

The next Supplier Fair will happen in mid-April 2024. Learn more about ways you can get involved with the technical association here 

PMCA Production Conference 

The 76th Annual PMCA Production Conference event, themed ‘The Heat is On,’ addressed a range of manufacturing issues challenging chocolate and confection producers. More than 225 organizations and almost 600 people gathered at the Convention Center in historic downtown Lancaster for 2.5 days of education and collaborative discussions about candy.   

Day 1 sessions explored ways to handle the heat with gummies, chocolate, caramel, and other candy confections. On Day 2, attendees received updates about the changing labor, regulatory, and environmental monitoring landscapes. They also learned about consumer and formulation considerations when using alternative sweeteners in confections and reviewed ways to build global innovation teams. The Day 2 afternoon break-out meetings addressed topics such as diversity, equity, and inclusion, confectionery trends, sugar reduction solutions, and vanilla complexities. FlavorSum led a session to share ways brands can chart flavor innovation for sweet success in candy.  

Click here to discover more about the Professional Manufacturers Confectioners Association and ways you can get involved. 

Ice Cream Technology Conference (ICTC)

What better place to host a conference about ice cream innovation than Austin, Texas, a hub of creative culture! The Ice Cream Technology Conference, held on April 18th and 19th, welcomed more than 20 speakers and hundreds of professionals to discuss innovations in frozen dessert research, technology, and trends. 

Educational sessions shared insights about better-for-you trends in ice cream, including sugar reduction and cleaner labels. Experts also offered perspectives about the regulatory landscape, sustainable manufacturing processes, and food safety practices for ice cream production. Attendees enjoyed a sweet exploration of innovation during the Ice Cream and Yogurt contests! 

For news about ICTC and other events sponsored by the International Dairy Foods Association (IDFA), click here.  

SupplySide East 

More than 220 suppliers connected with almost 3,000 attendees at the annual SupplySide East conference on April 18th and 19th at the Meadowlands Convention Center in Secaucus, New Jersey. Spotlights during the show highlighted actives like CoQ10, vitamin pre-mixes, fiber, and ashwagandha. Naturally-derived ingredients from mushrooms aligned with expanding interest in earthy flavors 

Speakers and suppliers offered insights and brand-building recommendations about clean label claims, especially non-GMO and a range of functional ingredients. Other sessions explored healthy aging, formulation challenges with functional beverages, synbiotics, supplement trends, the regulatory landscape, and supply chain issues.  

Mark your calendar today for SupplySide East 2024, happening on April 16th and 17th.   

Regulatory Corner

On April 13th, 2023, the FTC released letters to almost 700 companies warning them about potential penalties if they’re unable to substantiate product health claims. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has well-known jurisdiction over food and beverage packaging, promotional material, and product inserts. But the FDA shares some authority with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), an agency regulating truth in advertising. The FTC doesn’t pre-approve or mandate notification of claims as defined by FDA labeling laws. Both agencies, however, require brands to have relevant studies that accurately reflect claims presented through traditional and digital media channels.  

You can see the companies that received warning letters here. And if you need answers to your regulatory questions, reach out to our experts at regulatory@staging3.flavorsum.com 

Supply Chain Corner

TraceGains, a networked ingredient marketplace, released the 2023 Food and Beverage CPG Innovation Report, which investigates how companies worldwide are changing to meet their growth plans. The report reveals sourcing complexities are among the top 3 challenges keeping CPG leaders up at night. Over half are turning to co-manufacturers more often than 3 years ago, and almost 1 in 3 companies partner with at least 10 co-mans. 

Despite supply chain challenges, innovation is gaining momentum, with about two-thirds of CPGs participating in the survey reporting an increase in new product development.  Reformulation is one tactic some brands are using to mitigate ingredient costs and production complexities.  About one-third of organizations reported making adjustments to 20 or more recipes. If you need support with your innovation or reformulation efforts, contact the FlavorSum team! 

FlavorSum Team News

Celebrating our Growing Team

Helping you reach your food and beverage development goals is a priority at FlavorSum, where our team commits to doing what’s right for your brands every day. We’re expanding our bench strength and welcoming the following team members to FlavorSum:


    • Jamil T. – Production Associate in NJ

    • Iassan R. – Production Associate in NJ

Visit our Careers page to learn about new opportunities on the FlavorSum team

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In the May issue of FlavorSum Insights:

The Snack Bar Evolution: Meeting Expectations
for Flavor, Function, and Format

Let’s Connect and Share Daily Flavor News!

Past Issues

MARCH 2023

Finding Sweet Success with Ice Cream


How Generational Habits Shift Food and Beverage Trends

January 2023

Dry January Extends Into 2023 and Beyond