TUCKER, GA. – Although COVID-19 cases have been soaring in the United States in recent weeks, the 2022 International Production & Processing Expo (IPPE) will be held in-person from Jan. 25-27 at the Georgia World Congress Center in Atlanta, with updated safety measures in place. IPPE’s show management issued a press release on Jan. 5 stating that their goal is to “safely bring the industry back together to evaluate new products, technologies and services while reconnecting participants with their colleagues and friends.”
IPPE, which was held virtually last year due to the pandemic, is a collaboration of three trade shows — the International Feed Expo, International Poultry Expo and International Meat Expo — representing the entire chain of protein production and processing. The event is sponsored by the U.S. Poultry & Egg Association, the American Feed Industry Association and the North American Meat Institute.
“Over the past two years, our industries have been doing what it does best — providing safe, nutritious food to keep grocery store shelves stocked amid the COVID-19 pandemic,” the IPPE show management said. “Now, our industry leaders are eager to get back together to learn how they can incorporate best practices and continue to improve their businesses to be more efficient and meet the changing demands in a way that is more affordable for their customers. We are committed to providing a safe environment for them to do so and are confident that the 2022 IPPE will be a valuable experience.”
Although the Omicron COVID-19 variant is highly contagious, the World Health Organization said it appears to cause milder symptoms and be less deadly than the previous COVID-19 variants. Since the pandemic began in early 2020, it has infected nearly 300 million people worldwide while killing nearly 5.5 million.
IPPE show organizers have consulted with the Georgia Department of Public Health and epidemiological expert organizations regarding the safety measures established for an event of its size and type, in addition to continuously monitoring CDC guidance. IPPE’s updated safety measures include:
- recommending participants be fully vaccinated;
- recommending masks for all participants, with masks made available for all participants;
- anyone exhibiting COVID-like symptoms (fever, coughing, shortness of breath) should not attend IPPE;
- frequent cleaning and disinfection of public spaces, restrooms and high-touch building areas;
- hand sanitizer stations made available throughout the facility and event floor;
- disinfecting foot baths maintained at main entrances of exhibitor floor area;
- encouraging physical/social distancing measures where appropriate; and
- providing onsite COVID-19 rapid testing for visitors traveling to countries requiring negative COVID-19 results for entry, in addition to other measures.
“We have almost 1,200 exhibitors with more than 520,000 square feet of exhibit space,” IPPE show management said. “Registration is also continuing to show momentum. We currently are at 70% of registered attendance, compared to the 2020 IPPE; and our room block is 85% of 2020 hotel bookings. We expect attendance to be around 70% to 80% for IPPE, which is in line with similar industry events. Therefore, even under the current circumstances, we are confident that attendees and exhibitors will experience a valuable 2022 IPPE.”
For more information about IPPE, including registration details, lodging and education offerings, visit www.ippexpo.org.