Artisan foods are great for gifting

Farm Shop & Deli Show 2018 returns to the NEC for the eighth year from 16 – 18 April, bringing with it the latest developments in artisan produce and the hottest trends in specialty food and drink. The show will allow visitors to see products from over 450 companies and hear from industry experts speaking at the Farm Shop & Deli Live Stage.

As consumers become more conscious of the origin of their food, demand for locally sourced and farmed produce continues to increase, with Datamonitor expecting retail sales to surge from £3.6bn to £4.2bn by 2021. Sales of ‘free-from’ food are also on the up as consumers look to this popular lifestyle trend, with Euromonitor reporting an 11.7% sales increase in the sector last year.

The past year has also been a good one for chocolate, with Easter sales rising by 23% globally according to data analyst Mintel. Easter is stimulating innovation in the confectionary sector, as gin and tonic and Prosecco find their way into chocolate eggs along with almost everything else! Vegan chocolate is also rising in popularity as more and more consumers adopt an all round vegan diet.

Bread remains the most consumed food in the UK, bought by over 96% of the population according to the Grocer, so one of the most popular parts of Farm Shop & Deli Show is expected to be the return of British Baker’s Britain’s Best Loaf of 2018.



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Farm Shop & Deli Show Commercial Manager, Dan Eversfield, said: “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.”

Exhibitors at Farm Shop & Deli show represent every corner of the speciality sector. Among the diverse range of companies at the show will be confectionery specialists Amelie Chocolat; Bon Bons; and Melting Pot Fudge, drinks suppliers Cawston Press; Franklin & Sons; Laithwaite’s Wine; Tick Tock Tea and Thunder Toffee Vodka; as well as market leaders from across the speciality sector including Pasta Garofalo; Cook; Driver’s Pickles and Woodall’s Charcuterie.

Amongst the expert speakers will be cheese writer and World Cheese Awards Judge, Patrick McGuigan,, who will take his audience through a tasting of new wave British cheeses as he reveals the latest trends and how to translate them into extra sales.

Food waste has been at the top of the media agenda for some time, as the issue weighs ever more heavily on consumers’ consciences. Matthew Fort, top TV personality, presenter and writer, will be interviewed live by Richard Fox, Love Food Hate Waste ambassador, on his thoughts on food waste and sustainability and what it means for businesses.

Visitors will learn tips to reduce waste, as well as prolonging shelf life. Provenance, a similarly important issue for consumers, will also be discussed in a live interview with TV presenter Adam Henson.

The sector’s most innovative entrepreneurs will brave the Dragon’s Pantry, presenting their best ideas to a panel of industry experts. Those who dare to pitch will be rewarded with professional advice on the best way to market and refine their offering.

Exhibitors are also in with a chance to win the Great New Idea competition. All are eligible to enter, if their product has been launched within the last 12 months, with a winner announced at the show.

Vote for your favourite prior to the show via

Featured images include:
– Eat you hat
– Booja Booja hazelnut crunch chocolate truffles
– Hill top honey
– Buttermilk Confections
– Choc Affair
– Jimmys Pure Popcorn
– Coco Chocolatier
– BakedIn
– Beechs
– Pop a Ball

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