Sixteenth year: also this edition of the international food Exhibition Cibus, an important reference event for the Italian food farming industry par excellence, concluded with great profits. This biennial event, in addition to the multitude of stands also holds conferences and debates on current issues; initially open to the public, from various editions it is also reserved for operators of the sector: this does not mean there is little attendance from curious bystanders or kids from professional schools.
Beyond the numbers, and of a certain search for originality sometimes an end in itself, visiting Cibus is a kind of playful/anthropological experience. The subject is of great interest: food is part of us, it touches our soul, our brain and all our senses; although elated – or hidden, depending on the points of view – from the types of packaging, its essence is essential and vital. As in any self-respecting fair, many “suits” roam inside and outside the stands engaged in business but the atmosphere is unlike any other: more festive, hedonistic, sometimes elitist.
The stands are rarely without personality even if small, they take on the feature of the product that they display sometimes reaching peaks of imagination: such as the lavish display of a Southern grocery store, or stands that look like candy stores and does not end there. The event is filled with restaurants, bars, shows and demonstrations. Many stands offer sample tastings, some seek to involve the visitors, others propose a detached image or an “all black” design. Amongst chefs and hostesses, also the exhibitors are interesting to observe: there’s the one who has the makings of a barker, the one who scrutinizes the visitors hoping to attract the attention of their dream client; amongst many “longtime sailors” someone appears to be disoriented, moving as in a mom and pop store.
For an exultation of colours and shapes, you must go to the Dolce Italia (Sweet Italy) section: the name already says it all. This is an area of incredible calories filled with chocolates, Panettone cakes, candies, sugar sculptures that come from all regions… just visiting this section puts you in a great mood even if you don’t particularly love sweets.In line with the market, this edition of Cibus has proposed may organic, DOP and IGP labelled products along with lots of pasta and tomatoes, oil, an entire area dedicated to the beer making, with a thousand specialities to discover in a real treasure hunt.
Cibus is not just food. It is also wellness, nutrition, cosmetics (mainly made with olive oil), packaging – here the research of ecology stands out – accessories for the kitchen contribute to inane typical horrors of exhibitions. And there is so much design, especially for the bottles and for the containers of fine foods such as truffles, balsamic vinegar or salt from particular areas, but also in less sought after foods: as always in business, the cover helps to sell the book.