As GGR gets busy packing for several days at The NEC for Spring Fair our thoughts inevitably turn to survival techniques. Do we have enough pairs of shoes to comfortably tackle many miles of walking? Have we remembered our bamboo coffee cups and water bottles? What will we eat?
We might all love the unmissable Spring Fair but we’ve also experienced the dreaded queues at Starbucks and the Cornish Pasty company, or stared glumly at jam-packed tables in restaurants as we look for a place to rest our weary feet. This year, however, we need not go hungry!
Culinary Delights are on the menu at Spring Fair 2019, as exhibitors with Fresh-to-market giftable food get set to make their mark across show sectors. Artisan Avenue, Tasting Table and TasteFirst will all make their debut at this year’s show.
Artisan Avenue will showcase some of the best food artisans in the UK. Exhibitors with products ranging from oils to specialist spices, and from gins to honey, will be on hand to help visitors navigate the taste bud-teasing offerings and give advice to retailers on how best to develop and enhance their giftable food ranges.
The new showcase, in Hall 9, is set to introduce visitors to the likes of Feudo San Lorenzo’s olive oil, from traditionally farmed olives grown in Sicily, a myriad of honey varieties from Miod Raw Honey Co. and Manchester’s favored gin of choice, Manchester Gin.
Visitors’ looking to truly immerse themselves in the Spring Fair food offering will be able to enjoy the offerings from Artisan Avenue and Hall 5 exhibitors in all their tasty glory at the new-for-2019 Tasting Table Café in Hall 9. On each day of the show, 13 different exhibitors, including The Original Candy Company, Hames Chocolates, Popcorn Shed and Stewart’s Scotland, will have the opportunity to treat visitors to their culinary offerings and promote their produce to potential buyers.
In addition to the Artisan Avenue and Tasting Table will be TasteFirst, a new addition to the ‘First’ initiative. TasteFirst is set to introduce visitors to small, emerging and innovative exhibitors with intriguing culinary offerings. The new area will welcome the likes of Noveltea, who’re offering traditional teas with botanical twists; Samuelsons of Witney, who’re reimagining flavoured soft drinks with real ingredients; and Mountain Chocolate Company, whose artisan chocolates make for the perfect edible souvenirs.
Gift Food is a flourishing and growing market as consumers focus more on essentials (we all have to eat!) and cookery programmes whet the nation’s appetite for gourmet treats.
Rob Sapwell, Head of Sales at Spring Fair, commented: “This year with Artisan Avenue, Tasting Table and TasteFirst, we’re helping retailers to really see how giftable foods can really transform their offering and drive sales. Spring Fair is the perfect platform for buyers to find food inspiration and information on the most sought-after culinary delights set to take over the market in 2019.
“Of course, you can’t taste food over the internet, which is why it’s hugely important for retail buyers who want to develop or expand their giftable food offering to be able to taste and sample what’s on offer. It helps buyers ensure that what they’re buying is a quality product.”