The "China International Import Expo" (CIIE) trade fair in the metropolis of Shanghai has been in existence since 2018, and this year it already stood out because it actually took place and was open to the public. The team from Klasmann-Deilmann China was also there - as the only company from the horticultural sector.

The Klasmann-Deilmann China team at the CIIE

The CIIE was held in Shanghai from 5 to 10 November 2020. Klasmann-Deilmann China was the only company from the agricultural/horticultural sector invited to this national exhibition. "Our team helps horticultural businesses to improve plant quality and increase operational productivity," says Zhoucen Feng of Klasmann-Deilmann China. "At the CIIE we were able to present our expertise in growing media". In addition, the Chinese sales team presented the Klasmann-Deilmann Group's global production capacities - and the potential of its own new substrate production directly in China. "We wanted to present ourselves as a reliable partner - both in horticulture and in substrate production".

From left: Shiyu Gu, Kelvin Tan and the Head of Shanghai City Agricultural Administration.

Among the mayors of different cities who wanted to get to know more and therefore visited the Klasmann-Deilmann stand, were the director of the Shanghai City Agricultural Administration and the mayor of Qingpu District, where the CIIE took place. "It was a great honour to welcome both of them to our stand," confirms Kelvin Tan, Managing Director of Klasmann-Deilmann China.

The mayor of Qingpu District (Middle) visits Klasmann-Deilmann China.

Personal contact under strict hygiene measures
In order to be able to hold the fair despite the pandemic, strict hygiene regulations were in place. For example, stand personnel had to undergo a Nucleic test (PCR) within 7 days before CIIE with a negative result in order to be allowed to enter the exhibition centre. In addition, temperature measurements were taken at all entrances. "Despite all the requirements, we were able to enjoy the trade fair. We felt safe and had many interesting discussions," reports Zhoucen Feng. "We wore masks, washed our hands every few hours and reminded each other to keep a safe distance. Every half hour, we cleaned tables and touch screens with disinfectant wipes as required by the organisers". The exchange of documents and business cards was completely converted to WeChat QR codes.

The exhibition stand in Shanghai

"The CIIE was a superbly organised and implemented fair," sums up Zhoucen Feng. The fact that fewer visitors came than expected was due to worldwide travel restrictions. "In China, we have left Corona largely behind us. Nevertheless, many people were worried and did not want to make the journey here. We are now hoping for CIIE 2021."

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