Trade fair review IFAT: the new developments

Silvia Feder, Leitung Marketing
Endlich geht’s auch für Vecoplan wieder auf eine Messe!

IFAT in May 2020 was the first major trade fair for Vecoplan that was first postponed and then completely canceled due to the Corona pandemic. And this despite the fact that we were already in the starting blocks: The booth was planned, the trade show motto was set, the exhibits were already in production and the trade show invitations were as good as printed. So we had to rethink and do the whole thing digitally. We managed to partially compensate for the loss of the trade fairs with our live broadcasts from the Technology Center, but this could not make up for the high-quality discussions at a trade fair. All the more reason for us all to look forward to IFAT 2022!

We have been longing for this IFAT 2022, the anxious question was: Our audience too?

The first day of the fair started a little cautiously. In the end, however, this impression was only due to our impatience. It took shortly before noon for the crowd of visitors to fight their way through to our hall. If you then consider that the first and last days of the fair are generally quieter than the others, we could be very satisfied with the start. The number of talks increased considerably until Wednesday and then reduced as expected towards the end of the event.

This is how exhibitor and visitor numbers developed overall

Messe München GmbH, as the organiser, was satisfied at the end of the fair. With 2,984 exhibitors and around 119,000 visitors, the 2018 figures could not be matched. The previous strong share from Russia and China was missing here. There were also a significantly fewer visitors from the USA than in previous years. In addition, according to statements by the fair, the behaviour of companies has (also) adapted to the situation. In order to protect employees from the virus that is still present, not as many people per company were sent. However, the needs have not reduced, which ultimately means that the quantity of visitors has decreased but not the quality of the enquiries. It is pleasing that the proportion of exhibitors and visitors from abroad has remained the same, confirming IFAT’s reputation as a leading international trade fair.

The summary of Vecoplan: Successful premiere!

What is certain is that the topic of the circular economy and the sustainable disposal of waste has gained in importance. This is not only shown by the fact that these areas generally take up more space at the fair, but also that the number of our discussions has increased by more than 20%, a very large proportion of which were new contacts. It is gratifying that our latest development – the new VAZ shredder for reusable material, which we presented to the public for the first time – was very well received by visitors to the stand. We were able to close a sale for a machine directly at the trade fair. Currently, further offers are already going out to the many interested parties. Once again, it has been shown how valuable the broad product range is which Vecoplan offers. The challenges of the visitors were manifold but we were able to offer the right solution for all areas of application.

Was it worth the effort and what is actually behind a trade fair appearance?

  • 80 tonnes of concentrated machine power were driven to Munich
  • Several cranes were needed to erect the machines
  • An assembly team, a commissioning team, the electrical engineering team and the marketing team were on their way to set up the stand
  • The stand builder spent 8 days building a beautiful stand around the machines
  • Almost 30 people not only had to be trained for the stand service, but also dressed for it
  • A total of 350 sandwiches and 300 lunches went over the counter

But of course! Yes – all the effort was worth it to be able to get in touch with customers and interested parties personally again and have good conversations in this extraordinary trade fair atmosphere.

Our conclusion: We are already looking forward to the next fair, the preparations are already in full swing!


IFAT is the world's largest trade fair for the environmental technology industry. It is thus considered the world's leading trade fair for water, sewage, waste and raw materials management and is normally held every two years at the exhibition center in Munich.

Impressionen from IFAT 2022

Experience once again the positive mood and verve that accompanied us during the five days of the trade fair.