Financial Struggles End Cal Food Expo's 9-Year Run
The California Food Expo is no more.
In a news release Wednesday, event leaders cited financial challenges for closing up shop effective Jan. 31.
With a big push from then-mayor Ashley Swearengin, the annual food and beverage showcase began in 2011 as the Fresno Food Expo.
Event Strived to Increase Business for Valley’s Food Industry
The idea behind the show was to grow new business opportunities for the San Joaquin Valley’s food industry. And to market Fresno as a place that not only grows crops but turns those crops into popular food items.
By most accounts, the expo accomplished that goal.
However, its financial underpinnings proved unsustainable despite attracting more than 1,000 attendees annually.
“On behalf of the board of directors, we would like to thank all of our supporters who have played a role in making the California Food Expo a marquee food industry event; specifically, the sponsors who provided the financial means to make it possible year after year, and the exhibitors and buyers who believed in it and made it a truly unique event,” said Agnes Saghatelian, chairwoman of the California Food Expo.
Related Story: Will Food Expo Leave Fresno? Council Approves Sponsorship Deal.
Refunds for Registered Exhibitors
Exhibitors who registered for the 2020 event, which had been scheduled for Sept. 14-15 at the Fresno Convention Center, will receive refunds by Jan. 31, expo leaders said.
The switch in branding from “Fresno” to “California” took place for last year’s event.