FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 28, 2004

ILLINOIS DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE TO HOLD FIRST ILLINOIS FOOD EXPO
Thousands of Midwest food buyers invited to sample products from Illinois food companies and agriculture associations

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – The Illinois Department of Agriculture will hold a large food show in suburban Chicago Thursday, Sept. 30, to promote the consumption of Illinois food products.

More than 3,000 buyers for restaurants, grocery stores, catering services, wholesale food suppliers and food distributors throughout the Midwest have been invited to attend the inaugural Illinois Food Expo at the Drury Lane Theatre Center in Oakbrook Terrace. The show will allow the buyers to sample and order products from 45 Illinois food companies and three Illinois trade associations.

"Marketing Illinois food products is an important part of our mission, and this show will give Illinois food companies an excellent opportunity to meet new customers and increase sales of their products," Agriculture Director Chuck Hartke said. "Every event we sponsor that creates demand for our agricultural production helps to preserve jobs in an industry that employs more than 136,000 Illinoisans."

Illinois ranks second nationally in food processing employment. According to the state Department of Employment Security, 87 of the state’s 102 counties have at least one food processing plant.

The Illinois Food Expo is scheduled from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. It will include an elegant buffet table in the center of the theatre and company booths around its perimeter.

A list of the participating companies follows:
Al Gelato Bornay, Franklin Park
Allen Brothers, Chicago
Archer Daniels Midland Co., Decatur
Baja Foods, Chicago
Bernhardt’s Gillespie
Beverly’s Dressings, Roanoke
Brodie Meat Products, Galesburg
Carl Buddig & Co., Homewood
Chiappetti Lamb and Veal, Chicago
Cipriani’s Pasta & Sauce, Chicago Heights
Clyde’s Delicious Donuts, Addison
Connie’s Pizza/Nation Pizza Products, Carol Stream
Coupla Guys Foods, Chicago
Danner’s Salads, Peoria
Dutch Valley Veal, South Holland
Farmers’ Packing, Albion
Food Industry News, Des Plaines
Fox Valley Winery, Oswego
Fratelli Coffee Co., Schiller Park
Hill & Valley (a division of Nancy’s Pies), Rock Island
Illinois Beef Association, Springfield
Illinois Crown Beef, LaFayette
Illinois Pork Producers Association, Springfield
J.D. Mullen Co., Palestine
The Jel Sert Co., West Chicago
King Kold Frozen Foods, Chicago
La Mexicana, Chicago
Lily Foods, Chicago
Lonzerotti’s Italian Products, Jacksonville
Louie’s Seasoning Co., Johnston City
Meadowbrook Farms Cooperative, Rantoul
Mel-O-Cream Donuts International, Springfield
Mexifeast Foods, Chicago
Noon Hour Food Products, Chicago
Nu-World Amaranth, Naperville
Prima Pasta Shop, Peoria
Rab Bar, Deerfield
Ray’s Brand Products, Decatur
Reid Foods, Gurnee
Riley’s Seasonings, Pittsfield
Rose Acre Farms, Germantown
Rubinelli, Bolingbrook
Select Brands, Chicago
Starship Restaurant & Catering, Forest Park
Steidinger Foods, Fairbury
V. Formusa Co., Chicago
Wiscon Corp., Melrose Park
Zivney Cheese, Minonk

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