The doors have closed on another gourmet spectacular. Speciality & Fine Food Fair 2017 may be over for this year, but the journey is just beginning for hundreds of speciality food and drink producers who exhibited their mouth watering creations at the three-day extravaganza.
A new look show greeted foodservice, retail, wholesale and hospitality buyers at Olympia, London. Visitors were treated to tasty artisan products from exhibitors including; Belvoir Fruit Farms, Brindisa, Burts Chips, Cawston Press, Divine Chocolate, Dr Wills, Fairfield Farms, Great British Biscotti Co., Halen Mon, Joe & Seph’s, Luscombe Drinks, Mill & Mortar, Nicholas Vahe, Rombouts, Snowdonia Cheese Company, Savoursmiths, Soda Folk, Ten Acre, Van Strien, Vinegar Shed and Warner Edwards.
Functional, free from and fun! Buyers discovered exciting new trends and innovative products from over 700 exhibitors. The free from movement remained a strong focus for producers, along with health and wellbeing. We saw everything from functional teas, all natural condiments, free from nut butters and raw chocolate to chickpea crisps with Vitamin D, gourmet fruit lollies, gin with collagen, sugar free prosecco and spices galore.
As well as being a beacon of outstanding British produce, Speciality & Fine Food Fair bought together examples of fine food from abroad too. Lord Mayor of Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon, Gareth Wilson visited the Fair to meet producers on the Taste of Ulster stand. Giovanni Fava, Lombardy Minister of Agriculture, attended to watch Italian chefs whip up a storm using ingredients from the Lombardy Region on the demo stage.
Happy shoppers Speciality & Fine Food Fair is the leading showcase of glorious food and drink from the UK and beyond. The aisles of Olympia were packed with quality trade visitors; including buyers from Waitrose, Ocado, Whole Foods Market and Selfridges, as well as from restaurants and hotels including Claridge’s and Hakkasan Group, plus hundreds of independent delis and farm shops from across the country.
Exhibitor, Paul Rostand from the Great British Biscotti Co, explains: “Speciality & Fine Food Fair has been a fantastic show for us this year, enabling us to meet and present our brand to the top buyers in the industry. All of the visitors were industry professionals and it is essential to be there to meet the best buyers and producers. A networking event that we can’t afford to miss. We have already booked for 2018 and we can’t wait!”
First time exhibitor, Jessica Barac, Founder of Revolicious said: “Fantastic show to launch at! We met Sainsbury’s, Ocado, Selfridges, Compass Group, Sodexo and Harrods. Couldn’t be happier with the Speciality & Fine Food Fair – see you in 2018.”
Brand Manager, Steve Bush, from long time exhibitor Fairfield Farm Crisps comments: “We have been exhibiting at Speciality & Fine Food Fair for seven years and the event keeps on getting better, so much so we have doubled our presence for 2018.”
Adrian Boswell, Fresh Food Buyer at Selfridges remarks: “I really enjoyed Speciality & Fine Food Fair this year, a vast improvement in product quality and zoning of stands in comparison to last year. I absolutely loved the Discovery Zone and am already looking forward to visiting again next year!”
Justin Lennox, Buyer at Morrisons commented: “This is the second year in a row I have attended the Fair. It is by far the best speciality food and drink show in Northern Europe!”
Rob Brice, Food Consultant for Tesco & The Cattle Shed, said “New products and suppliers are key to staying at the forefront in food, whether that is in retail or foodservice. Speciality & Fine Food Fair brings exciting innovation, provenance and passion together for three days. Not to be missed, the Fair for me is like Willy Wonka’s for fine food and drink!”
Look, listen and learn… Along with a treasure trove of tasty delights, buyers were invited to tread the Speciality Chocolate Trail, created by award-winning pâtissier Will Torrent, to uncover the latest chocolate and confectionery treats.
Chef Steve Walpole went head to head with Great Taste award chef Nick Crosley on the Savour the Flavour: Live Kitchen stage. The Food for Thought stage sponsored by Cotswold Fayre, offered advice to small businesses. Experts included Jennie Allen, Proprietor of Bayley & Sage delis and Alison Muirhead, Independent Retail Lead for the Soil Association. Producers were also given the chance to visit the Scale Up workshops; where they gathered advice and practical business solutions in roundtable discussions.
Join us next year… Speciality & Fine Food Fair 2018 will take place at Olympia London, 2 – 4 September. After a great first year, Speciality & Fine Food Asia will be back in Singapore from 17 – 19 July 2018.
Kara Bowen, Event Manager, said: ‘Speciality food and drink is a flourishing sector and each year we are amazed by the stunning and inimitable products that are on display. 2017 saw a fresh, new look for the Fair at Olympia and it was a great success. Our audience asked and we listened. This year our aim was to reinforce the unique nature of the Fair and enhance the visitor experience, which is exactly what we achieved! Many producers have already signed up for next year and we look forward to welcoming them all again.’
Speciality & Fine Food Fair ambassador and food consultant, Jane Milton, comments: “As a visitor, food industry expert and SFFF ambassador, I saw some fabulous new businesses and food products in the Discovery Zone. I met many colleagues, clients and contacts and made some great new connections too. I also lead a packed roundtable discussion for a Scale Up session where I shared my experience and knowledge with small businesses. What a wonderful show!”