A + AThe recent staging of A+A 2011, the leading International Trade Fair with Congress for Safety and Health at Work, in Düsseldorf, Germany started with record exhibitor and exhibit space numbers and after four days also posted top attendee numbers: 60,100 trade visitors took part -  more than ever before in the event’s history (2009: 55,800). Every fourth visitor came from countries outside of Germany with a significant increase from South and Central American nations. A total of 1,600 exhibitors from 54 countries showcased the latest technologies and trends for occupational health and safety.

“This result has further confirmed A+A’s global status as “‘Safety’s No. 1”. No other industry event offers such a complete product overview and provides so many impulses for the sector due to the productive exchange between experts,” stated Joachim Schäfer, Managing Director of Messe Düsseldorf.

Klaus Bornack, Chairman of the Trade Fair Advisory Board and Managing Director at Bornack GmbH & Co. KG, reported about the constructive talks between the suppliers and their customers at A+A 2011: “No costs are spared when it comes to staff health and safety. High-quality safety products not only provide better protection, they also enjoy greater user acceptance levels which means they are also in greater demand. The concentrated exchange with customers at A+A also provided valuable input in terms of further product development.”

The exhibitors at A+A 2011 displayed a wide array of new products and services. Highlights included protective clothing and products especially designed for women (e.g. protective overshoes with steel caps for high heels, feminine overalls and safety helmets in fashionable colors with decorative appliqués), the ergonomically perfect office or assembly work station (adaptable to individual physical, acoustic and visual requirements) as well as compact, yet high-performing equipment for measuring pollutant levels.

From North America, 49 companies showcased their products at A+A 2011 – 20 of which participated in the successful North American Pavilion, organized by Messe Düsseldorf North America and supported by the National Safety Council (NSC).

The new segment “Specialized Equipment for Disaster Management” at A+A 2011 was well received by the visitors. Exhibitors presented personal protective equipment, ABC protection, technical aids as well as decontamination, control and communication technology. “After the successful premiere of the Disaster Management Forum with congress lectures and presentations at A+A 2009, this was the logical second step. A+A is aimed at a wide audience in the field of occupational safety and security management – areas that, due to altered risks, are now increasingly gaining importance worldwide. And in major disasters all involved must work together closely: police, fire department, disaster relief, other authorities and affected companies,” remarked Albrecht Broemme, President of the Federal Agency for Technical Relief.

Popular style trends and functional aspects for professional and protective clothing were the focus of the A+A fashion shows. Ergonomic solutions for the office and production areas were the topics at the WorkplaceDesign Theme Park while the well-attended “Hazardous Substances Innovation Park” provided information on new products, concepts and services for the handling of high risk substances.

The A+A Congress organized by the German Federal Association for Occupational Safety and Health (Basi) attracted over 5,000 participants and offered a range of topics regarding social developments, upcoming reforms at national and international level, technical and organizational innovations as well as new scientific results. For instance, the Autumn Conference of the Society of Ergonomics (GfA) held as part of  the A+A Congress discussed to what extent new concepts for work schedules and organization can meet the increasing demands by staff for flexibility and mobility. 

The international lecture series of the conference organized by the International Labour Organisation (ILO) included the “German-Polish Dialogue on Occupational Safety” (Poland was the partner country at A+A 2011). The lectures dealt with the two countries’ national occupational safety strategies and the convergence of the markets for personal protective equipment, for example in terms of overriding standards and guidelines within the European domestic market.

The next A+A will be held in Düsseldorf from November 5 - 8, 2013.  For further information on visiting or exhibiting at A+A 2013, contact Messe Düsseldorf North America, 150 North Michigan Avenue, Suite 2920, Chicago, IL 60601. Telephone: (312) 781-5180; Fax: (312) 781-5188; E-mail: info@mdna.com; Visit our web site http://www.mdna.com; Subscribe to our blog at http://blog.mdna.com; Follow us on twitter at http://twitter.com/mdnachicago.