Tuesday, March 11, 2014

A Visit to the Natural Products Expo West

Entrance to the expo
This weekend I attended the Natural Products Expo West in Anaheim, California. As a nutritionist, nothing gets me more excited than an expo hall of natural food products. As soon as I arrived, I heard the sweet, sweet voice of Michael Franti. (OK, this may be a little more exciting than the expo hall I was about to enter). The entrance to the convention center was lined with booths featuring a variety of food companies eagerly handing out samples of their products. First stop, breakfast burritos. I'm glad I came hungry!


Inside the expo hall were more booths and more food! The rush of attendees stuffed their bags with as many samples as possible. Within ten minutes, I was feeling a little lopsided. Some booths got a little more creative with fun themes, hangouts, and costumes. Clif Bar Company and So Delicious were some of my favorite stops of the day.

Clif Bar Company
I thoroughly enjoyed eating my way around the expo hall, but believe it or not, there was much more to see than just food! Companies featuring lines of beauty products, cleaning supplies, and candles were also present to share the benefits of their natural products.

So Delicious

After a long day of snacking and walking with a 10 pound bag, I was thrilled to attend The Organic Center's 11th Annual VIP Dinner. The night opened with a video called, "The Natural Effect," which you can watch here. The tables were decorated with fresh flowers, wine, and flavored water. A beautiful heirloom salad was placed at each seat along with a basket of artisan baked breads. I surprisingly built up a large appetite to eat a little bit of everything at the amazingly crafted buffet which consisted of roasted root vegetables, jasmine rice, hangar steak, and grouper. An assortment of petite desserts were displayed on a wall including fruit tarts and cakes. During dinner, Jessica Shade, the director of science programs introduced us to the exciting research The Organic Center is currently involved in and what we can expect to hear more about in the future. It really was a lovely night.

Dinner hosted by The Organic Center

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