Preparations are underway for Welsh food and drink companies to take centre stage later this month at two international trade events.
First up is IFE (The International Food & Drink Event), one of the UK’s leading industry events. Taking place 17-20 March at ExCeL in London, this year’s event is billed as a celebration of 1,350 innovative, global and cutting-edge food and drink manufacturers.
Supported by the Welsh Government, nine Welsh food and drink companies will feature on the Cymru/Wales stand, with a diverse range of products on show, from sausages, cheese and dairy, bakery and confectionary, through to salt and mineral water.
The Welsh companies exhibiting are Pancake World, The Welsh Sausage Company, Snowdonia Cheese Company, Wild Trail, Anglesey Sea Salt Company/Halen Môn, Nimbus Foods, Princes Gate Water, The Authentic Curry Co Ltd and Euro Foods UK.
Brighter Foods, whose snack brand Wild Trail has already had a successful start to 2019 with the listing of three flavours of their healthier range in Co-op stores across Wales, having already secured listings with Tesco (UK-wide), Ocado and Amazon.
Robin Williams, CEO of Brighter Foods is looking forward to the opportunities IFE will bring,
“We are delighted to win the new listing with Co-op and we’ve worked hard to create a free-from snack bar of unrivalled quality that meets the demands of the modern consumer.
“It’s exciting to be attending IFE with our products. It’s not only a great opportunity to showcase to the industry what great and innovative products are on offer in Wales, but also a fantastic opportunity to develop business partnerships and continue to build on our recent success.”
Also present will be spring water company Princes Gate, who will be unveiling their 51% recycled plastic packaging for the first time. Based on an organic dairy farm in the foothills of the Preseli mountains, the company was set up by two brothers 27 years ago and their family have been farming the land for generations. Their process is quite simple – rain falls on the Preseli mountains and then they’ll wait 15 years for the water to filter through the mineral rich rocks until it is bottled in their purpose built factory.
Commenting ahead of the event, Derick Lewes-Gale, National Account Manager at Princes Gate Spring Water Ltd,
“We currently use 25% recycled rPET in all our bottles across the range and have committed to increase this to 51% this spring from a UK source. Sustainability is key to us, so in recent years we have made some big changes in our factory which now makes us the only manufacturer within the UK soft drinks sector to be totally self-sufficient from green energy produced onsite.”
Following on from IFE, Welsh food and drink companies will be joined by industry experts, national and international buyers, producers and journalists at Wales’s second international food and drink event, BlasCymru/TasteWales.
Taking place at the Celtic Manor Resort, Newport from 20-21 March, it features an inspiring conference line-up of leading speakers, a showcase of the best products Wales has to offer, an Innovation and Skills Zone showcasing the latest industry technology and one to one sessions for buyers to engage with Welsh producers and discover more about their great tasting products.
The Welsh Government’s Minister for Environment, Energy and Rural Affairs Lesley Griffiths will be hosting the BlasCymru/TasteWales event,
“Welsh food and drink enjoys a reputation for quality and excellence around the world, and we want to support our producers to develop their market within Wales and further afield.
“With Brexit approaching it is more important than ever that we champion Welsh produce and support food and drink businesses in every way we can. We need to help them build relationships with businesses in their sector so they can learn about new technologies, explore foreign markets and be competitive in their industry.”
With preparations by the Welsh Government’s Food Division already well underway, new figures show that 2017’s inaugural BlasCymru/TasteWales generated over £16 million in additional sales and contracts, with high hopes for an even better performance this time round.
Visit the Cymru/Wales stand numbers N3040 and N3010 at IFE 2019 from the 17-20 March 2019.