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Mini-market struggles for an "un" mini identity

NEW YORK — The February Mini-market is underway and, true to form, is again trying to reinvent itself, just like the industry around it.

After several years of consolidation in both the retailer and supplier communities, the mini-market is struggling to find an identity — especially since its considerably larger sister, the New York Home Textiles Market, will take place less than eight weeks from now.

For one, Stanley Mieszkowski, vice president, sales and marketing, New York-based The Northwest Company, said, "(Mini-market is not) relevant any longer."

Despite its detractors, mini-market — traditionally a seasonal goods market, but evolving into an open venue for all products — still serves a purpose for everyone involved, although for some more than others. Many suppliers use it not only as a seasonal-goods sell but also as a platform to test new products on retailers before launching them at the spring market.

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