ProSweets Cologne and ISM cancelled in 2021 due to the pandemic

Just two weeks ago, Koelnmesse, the leading associations of the German sweets and snack industry, and key industry representatives were confident that they would be able to hold ProSweets Cologne as well as ISM 2021. However, due to the continuing rise in the number of infections and the associated lockdowns and international travel restrictions, Koelnmesse is now forced to cancel the hybrid editions of ProSweets Cologne and ISM planned for 31 January to 3 February 2021.

This decision was made in close consultation with the conceptual sponsors of both trade fairs. “We very much regret having to take this step. We were well-positioned and certain that we would be able to kick-start the sweets and snack industry again with ISM and ProSweets Cologne 2021,” explained Gerald Böse, CEO of Koelnmesse.

“Amid the current uncertainty, however, our exhibitors and visitors do not foresee a dramatic change that would make trade fair participation possible in January. We will nevertheless keep pushing forward and start right away with preparations for ISM and ProSweets Cologne 2022,” continued Böse.

The planned digital format Matchmaking 365+ will also not be used because a purely digital offering without a physical trade fair does not achieve the desired benefits for exhibitors and visitors. In their role as important innovation platforms for the industry, the two trade fairs are instead planning a campaign for the presentation of significant industry developments, new products and trends from the sweets and snacks sectors.

“Trade fairs like ISM and ProSweets Cologne depend on the large number of national and international industry experts who are responsible for the quality of the event. We can no longer ensure this quality due to the very dynamic infection situation and further cancellations by exhibitors as a result, which made it impossible to maintain the number of registrations that were quite solid. Naturally, we are disappointed. Nevertheless, now is the time to look ahead positively together with our customers. We here in Cologne continue to be ready to hold our trade fairs with maximum safety and hygiene measures and are already looking forward to a new edition of ISM and ProSweets Cologne,” emphasised Oliver Frese, Chief Operating Officer of Koelnmesse.

The conceptual sponsors of ProSweets Cologne, which include the Sweets Global Network (SG), the Association of the German Sweets Industry (BDSI), the German Agricultural Society (DLG) and the Central College of the Confectionery Industry (ZDS), also support this decision. “For many of our members, the trade fair duo of ISM and ProSweets Cologne is always the industry highlight of the year. Given the many technical innovations for the 2021 edition, we were all hoping of course to give the trade fair business new impetus with the leading trade fairs of the international sweets and snack industry. We sincerely regret that now both fairs cannot take place due to the coronavirus pandemic. However, we believe this is the right decision given the current circumstances,” explained Dr Carsten Bernoth, Managing Director, Association of the German Confectionery Industry (BDSI).

“We are very sorry that ProSweets Cologne 2021 will not take place. Sharing technical information and ideas is crucial, especially during these times, in order to help companies produce safe food. Nevertheless, it is important to look optimistically to the future because ProSweets Cologne is a key business meeting place for suppliers to the sweets and snack industry. In addition, every year it provides new ideas and innovations in the areas of manufacturing and production, as well as packaging and ingredients for sweets and snacks, which are also important for ISM visitors,” explains Simone Schiller, Managing Director DLG Test Center for Food.”

Preparations for 2022

Planning for the events in 2022 is already underway. Together with the conceptual sponsors, Koelnmesse will use the time to ensure the continued good positioning concept of ProSweets Cologne and ISM. This also includes the further development of digital formats, which will be the ideal complement to the physical trade fair. The next ProSweets Cologne and ISM will take place from 30 January to 2 February 2022.

New date: 30 January to 2 February 2022 – planning already underway



To stay up to date on the latest, trends, innovations, people news and company updates within the global confectionery market please register to receive our newsletter here  

Media contact

Kiran Grewal
Editor, International Confectionery

Tel: +44 (0) 1622 823 922

Subscribe to our newsletter

Don't miss new updates on your email
Scroll to Top