Incubator Alley at CHFA NOW is the destination for what’s next in natural, organic and wellness.

Aaron Skelton

In my past life as a buyer for Loblaws, I attended numerous trade shows where I got the opportunity to take in new sights, tastes and smells from packed trade show floors full of brands showcasing the best of the best of their product lineup. But without a doubt, one of my favourite places to discover products was always Incubator Alley at what is now known as CHFA NOW. Incubator Alley is where I got a glimpse into the future of natural, organic and wellness (NOW). I took in what was new in the industry and made my pick for what I expected to make big in the coming years, ensuring that our offerings were always on the cutting edge of innovation.

Fast forward to today, as the President & CEO of CHFA, I’ve had the opportunity to work with the team here to elevate this program and further support the up-and-comers in the natural, organic and wellness industry. I see enormous potential in the innovation and passion these brands bring to the table, and we’re doing our part to help them get the spotlight they deserve.

Over the last few shows, we’ve partnered with Natural Products Canada, YSpace and Black Entrepreneurship Alliance — all innovation and entrepreneurship hubs in Canada to help us expand this program and bring more fresh brands to the trade show floor. Our plans for CHFA NOW Toronto this September are no different. 

From innovations in the plant-based category to exciting modernizations in the health and beauty categories, the brands joining us in Incubator Alley at CHFA NOW Toronto 2023 are compelling.

We have over 45 new brands exhibiting in this space and counting – here’s a sample of what we’re expecting to see this year: 

Expansion of plant-based: 

The plant-based category is getting a shake-up! From tapping into the tinned fish frenzy to giving a fresh look to those family-favourite meals like Taco Tuesday, we’re excited to see the innovations come to life on the floor in this growing category.

Healthy home and beauty: 

Canadians are looking holistically at their health and wellness routine, and we are excited to see more home and beauty brands joining us in Incubator Alley this year to help you expand your store’s offerings and meet this demand. 

Excitement in ready-to-drinks (RTDs): The RTD category has been growing and it’s exciting to see it grow within the natural, organic and wellness category too. From new kombucha flavours and canned teas to functional sodas, the NOW industry has this category covered.

What else is new? Our retailers are VIPs at CHFA NOW, and one of the perks of VIP status is we’re fueling you with free food throughout the weekend.

On Saturday and Sunday at CHFA NOW, retailer attendees can enjoy complimentary breakfast and espresso bars before the trade show floor opens and get a little insight into what to expect throughout the weekend.

Saturday, September 23: Trends Preview 

8:30 a.m. – 10 a.m.  

Join us for a bite to eat before the trade show opens and let us fill you in on the trends to spot and the brands we think deserve the hype.

Sunday, September 24: Incubator Alley PITCH Breakfast

8:45 – 9:45 a.m.

With Incubator Alley growing each year, we’re inviting our retailer attendees the opportunity to be won over directly by those up-and-coming brands during breakfast. We’re giving the mic to a selection of our Incubator Alley exhibitors for 60 seconds to fill you in on why they are the next big thing in natural, organic and wellness.

Incubator Alley at CHFA NOW offers endless opportunities and untapped potential. We’re proud to be teaming up with incredible partners and working to support new entrepreneurs in the industry; after all, they are the future of natural, organic and wellness.

If you’re joining us this year, snatch a picture of your favourite discovery and share it on social media using our hashtag #CHFAnow. If you haven’t registered yet, head to chfanow.ca/Toronto to get started. We can’t wait to see what piques your interest.

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