The Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (VDACS) offers Virginia producers the opportunity to introduce their products to the growing Indian market through a partnership with the Southern United States Trade Association (SUSTA).

The International Food and Drink Expo (IFDE) will take place in New Delhi, India Dec. 2–4, 2010, and VDACS encourages food producers and processors to consider taking part.

“India is a rapidly growing but challenging market for exporters” said Matthew J. Lohr, VDACS Commissioner. “SUSTA can help break down barriers and put producers in direct contact with buyers in major retail outlets and food service companies. One of the most positive sides of the trade equation in recent years has been the export market, and many of our companies have benefited from the contacts these international shows provide. Virginia ag exports totaled $2.3 billion in 2009, and there are few sectors of today’s economy that can beat that record. With a low participation cost and free product shipping, this is a show that could give our exporters exposure to a new and emerging market.”

India’s economy is the fourth largest economy in the world according to Gross Domestic Product and is projected to grow eight percent in 2010, making it the world’s fastest-growing economy. India’s food and grocery market is the sixth largest in the world, valued at $182 billion. With a population of 1.2 billion, food accounts for two-thirds of the total retail market in India.

Best candidates for product sales at IFDE include cookies and candies; snack foods; salsas, sauces and other condiments; juices and beverages, wine; canned foods; breakfast foods. The East Coast of the United States has seen increased opportunities for marketing apples to India, with more than a million dollars in exports to the country in the first few months of 2010.

Information for participants:
• Event date: Dec. 2 – 4, 2010.
• Participation fee: $400.

Participants will receive:
• Pre-arranged one-on-one meetings/appointments.
• Guided tour of major retailers and/or food service organizations.
• Market briefing by USDA-Foreign. Agricultural Service staff in New Delhi.
• Meetings with market consultants to discuss your export marketing strategy and goals.
• Free shipping (up to $1,000 per company) to the show; no shipping of product or equipment back to USA following show.
• Free access to IFDE and a small display area in the SUSTA pavilion.
• Travel and accommodations are the responsibility of company.

Producers interested in taking advantage of this opportunity to introduce their products to key buyers in India should contact Keith Long in VDACS’ Office of International Marketing. Call 804.371.8990 or e-mail For information on additional domestic and international trade events, go to the VDACS Web site at