A total of over 1500 exhibitors attended the whole event. They represented the whole spectrum of the food and drink supply chain, from retailers to manufacturers.
There is an increase in demand for locally farmed and sourced produce. According to one report, retail sales are expected to rise to £4.2bn from £3.6bn by 2021. Therefore, the popularity of the Farm Shop & Deli Show 2018 was extremely high with visitors already relishing the idea of artisan products. And the show did not disappoint.
The Farm Shop & Deli Show is the sector’s leading event for delicatessens, farm shops, garden centres, restaurants, food halls, butcheries and bakeries. Hence hundreds of companies showcased their best wares.
The Farm Shop & Deli Live stage offered an all-star speaker line up. Each session was curated to cover relevant trends within the sector, such as the importance in terms of adding value of sourcing local produce and stocking identifiable brands. Topics ranged from food waste to the booming trend of free-from foods.
The Dragon’s Pantry offered daring entrepreneurs the opportunity to present their best ideas to a panel of industry experts. New products and ideas were pitched. In return, experts offered professional advice on the best way to market and refine the offerings.
According to Farm Shop & Deli Show 2018 Commercial Manager, Dan Eversfield, “artisan food continues to be one of the success stories of the UK food and drink industry, driving growth in this sector. British food and drink exports grew by 8.3% year-on-year to £4.9bn, with international retailers looking to take advantage of the UK’s food and drink manufacturing expertise. When you also take into account the weaker pound, products from these shores are in demand and we expect this year’s event to be a hive of activity with buyers joining from around the globe.”
Cross country representation
This year, 25 countries were exhibiting in the overall Food and Drink Expo. They were from Canada, China, Cyprus to Iceland, India and Iran with nine featured pavilions. These include Taste of Nova Scotia; Taste Cork; Food & Drink Wales; Scotland Food & Drink; the Italian Trade Commission; Orkney Quality Food; and Chambre D’Agriculture De Dordogne, as well as Dadao TONGTU (Beijing Expo) and Iran International Exhibitions Co.
The 5 shows return in two years time at the same venue to offer unparalleled networking opportunities as suppliers, retailers and manufacturers from across the industry gather in the heart of Birmingham.