I’m a sucker for a sample. Well, not every sample. I don’t eat those weird chips n’ dips they offer at the supermarket. But if someone at a marketplace hands me a square of chocolate or a tiny cup of Teavanna or those yogurt taste samples — I’m all over that.
If you love samples, I have to let you in on an awesome secret. Go hungry to the Expo Manger Santé et Vivre Vert. The weekend-long event is a veritable sampler’s paradise. Every aisle has vedors who want you to try their products and entice you to the green side! However, be warned, every other sample fanatic in the city will be there too. The place gets packed. Of course, this means one can revisit the best booths again and again and again with no fear of being outed as a sample abuser.
Okay, samples aside, Expo Manger is an exhibition intended encourages people to care for their health. It emphasizes organic produce and eco-friendly products. The exhibitors generally display the sorts of wares one finds in health food stores and the healthy aisle at the supermarket. There are also a few local restaurants that set up booths. Just to name a few exhibitioners that you might recognize: Vega, Solo Fruit, Saladexpress, Crudessence, Neal Brothers Foods, Theobroma Chocolat, MGiddy Yoyo, Cliff Bars, Santropol, Aux Vivres, Belsoy, Bio-Vert. For a complete list, click here.
In addition to food, there are plenty of therapeutic products, vitamins, and supplements. Schools and centres that focus on health care — massage, chiropractors, anti-stress, counseling — have booths. There are a good number of vendors with cosmetics, body products, and other environmentally aware offerings. Again, to give you a sample of a few recognizable names: Druide, Fairtrade Canada, Green Beaver, Oxfram-Quebec.
In addition to giving samples, most of the vendors have their products on sale at great rates.
There are also demonstrations and conferences that take place at the exhibition. Among the speakers are Ayurvedic experts (Jonathan L. Raymond), a talk on making your own kombucha by David Cote, the VP of Rise Kombucha, nutritionists, counselors, and cooking demonstrations of all kinds (Thai soup made with coconut and pumpkin, pestos, corn crème brulé, to name a few).
Expo Manger Santé et Vivre Vert takes place at Palais de Congres (1001 Jean Paul Riopelle) on March 21 (10 a.m. – 8 p.m.), 22 (10 a.m. – 6 p.m.), and 23 (10 a.m. to 5 p.m.). $13/11.