- Associated Press - Thursday, February 28, 2019

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - More than 50 food producers, wineries and agricultural groups will showcase their Illinois-made products at the Illinois Products Expo this weekend.

The 21st annual affair will be Saturday and Sunday at the Illinois State Fairgrounds .

Food offerings may be sampled for free as well as purchased. They include fresh meat, pizza, sauces, honey, cakes, cheeses, seasonings and more. There are soy candles, agricultural-based soaps and lotions and other non-food items as well.

Officials say that Illinois ranks first nationally for food processing sales at $186 billion a year. It is among the state’s top manufacturing activities. There are more than 2,300 food processing companies employing more than 71,000 workers.

Admission is $5 per person. Children 10 and younger get in free. Beverage tastings come with a charge too.

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