Over 400 food and drink buyers will be coming to Ireland this month (March 22- 28) for Marketplace 2015, which will be hosted by Bord Bia in conjunction with the Irish food and drink industry.

Bord Bia says that the week-long business development event aims to build new trade relationships with retailers, foodservice buyers, ingredient buyers and distributors from across the globe.

After six months of planning, Marketplace 2015 will be the largest international food buyer event ever staged in Ireland, it says. There will be in excess of 400 food and drink trade buyers from 30 countries travelling to Dublin to do business with Irish food and drink producers.

“In addition to buyers from Ireland’s traditional export markets – the UK and Continental Europe – Bord Bia has secured buyers from Australia, Algeria, Bahrain, China, Indonesia, UAE, Japan, Singapore, Saudi Arabia, and South Africa.

“Over 100 delegates are travelling from Asia alone including the largest ever Chinese trade delegation to travel to Ireland. The registered buyers represent every sector of the industry including dairy, beef, lamb,and pigmeat,” Bord Bia says.

Bord Bia Chief Executive Aidan Cotter said that this is the largest business development event for the food and drink industry hosted by Bord Bia in Ireland.

“It represents a huge opportunity to showcase the breadth, depth and capabilities that has enabled the industry to build a €10.5 billion export platform and reach out to 175 markets around the world,” he said.

Bord Bia says the international buyers will be visitng farms, factories, retail stores and manufacturing facilities all around the country as part of the itinerary. The buyers will be visiting in excess of 100 sites across the country, it says.

“As part of the itineraries, some buyers will also meet with relevant stakeholders including Minister Simon Coveney TD, senior officials from the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Teagasc, Food Health Ireland, Irish Dairy Board and IDIA,” Bord Bia says.

All of the overseas buers (400 in total) will join 140 Irish food and drink buyers to gather at the Convention Centre Dublin (CCD) for a major one-to-one business development event on the Thursday of the event, it says.