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Expo West Cancelled Over Coronavirus Fears

The Natural Products Expo West has postponed its annual conference which expected 85,000 attendees.

Natural Products Expo West conference has been postponed over fears of the coronavirus (COVID-19). It is the largest natural products conference in the world where many CBD industry companies, as well as ancillary cannabis businesses, showcase their products. It's also an event focused on small businesses.

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The Anaheim, California conference expected 3,600 brands and over 85,000 attendees from 100 countries. The show was supposed to happen on March 3-7, 2020. Attendees received word of its cancellation on March 2. New Hope Network, the annual tradeshow's producer based out of Boulder, Colorado, said that the conference is postponed with hopes to reschedule for mid-April, Food and Business Network first reported. The date and location of the rescheduled event have not been announced.

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The company said on March 1 that it expected a 40 percent to 60 percent dip in attendance. At that time, Expo West had planned to proceed regardless of those brands dropping out. On March 2, an additional 300 brands pulled out of the event. 

“As with all our events, it was the intention here at Expo West in Anaheim, to follow official guidance from local authorities and to listen to the voices of the community we serve and support, in order to maximize the health of the industry,” said Fred Linder, group president of New Hope Network, wrote in a notice sent to all of the conference's participants on March 2. “Today, it is clear the majority of those voices are saying they want Expo West but not this week. And so we are being guided by that majority in postponing the show.

The LA Times reports a long list of conferences that have scaled back or canceled altogether due to fears over travel during the Coronavirus outbreak, the majority of which are in Europe.

Papa & Barkley have announced a CBD Outpost last-minute conference for free in Pasadena, California, for those companies who flew out and have an interest in meeting.