With approximately 143 million consumers, Russia is one of the most important foreign markets for consumer goods in the world, in particular for food and beverages, which currently account for about 30% of consumer spending in Russia and spending on food predicted to rise by 62% by 2015. At the same time, living and eating habits are changing, with convenience products enjoying great popularity. Their growing popularity and availability is accompanied by a growing number of super- and hypermarkets, which can increasingly be found even in medium-sized towns. These developments have given a new stimulus to the Russian packaging industry and there is great interest in innovative technologies and materials for producing packaging. Following a slump in demand due to the impact of the global financial and economic crisis in 2009 and early 2010 the market is now picking up and gaining momentum again, as reported in unison by the exhibitors at Upakovka/Upak Italia 2011, the international trade fair for packaging machinery, packaging production and packaging material.
Russia's leading trade fair took place from 25 - 28 January, in parallel to Interplastika 2011, the international trade fair for the plastics and rubber industry, as has now become established tradition. Together, they attracted some 20,000 trade visitors from Russia and the neighbouring countries to the Krasnya Presnya Expocenter in Moscow, where 890 exhibitors presented their products and services, covering a total area of over 17,000 square metres. Erhard Wienkamp, a Member of the Management Board of Messe Düsseldorf responsible for international trade fairs, was very pleased. "The fact that exhibitors at Upakovka/Upak Italia present innovative technologies has proven itself - and this attracts experts in the industry from the entire CIS. The rise in the number of exhibitors and the increased area covered by the fair alone indicate that manufacturers have regained confidence in the Russian market, and the outcome is proof that this confidence was justified. They have reported a significant rise in demand and intense negotiations, and are optimistic about the prospects for post-fair business."
The trade visitors were visibly impressed by the range of international goods and services on offer at Upakovka/Upak Italia, which was attended by exhibitors from 18 different countries. The largest numbers of exhibitors came from Russia, Italy and Germany, with official national presentations from Germany, Italy and France, amongst others. This was the 19th time that the fair, organised by Messe Düsseldorf and its Russian subsidiary OOO Messe Düsseldorf Moscow, in cooperation with the Italian event coordinator Centrexpo S.p.A., was held in Moscow.