Arcape's visit to Speciality & Fine Food Fair 2015

Written by Caron Peirson
Tuesday 8th September 2015
One of the high points in our calendar, and the Food and Drinks industry calendar, has to be the Speciality and Fine Food Fair that takes place in Olympia London.  Now in its 16th year this thriving fair has expanded and nowadays covers two floors.
 
This trade show is a fantastic opportunity for us to catch up with clients and others we are collaborating with, meet new friends and forge new business contacts!
 
With over 750 exhibitors, buyers can identify the latest trends, sample new products and chat and ask questions to the sellers and producers!
 
Sellers can take the opportunity to make a great impression to their target market, showcase new products and new taste combinations, source help, meet influential buyers and network.  Their audience, at this event, included the press, independent and large retailers, wholesalers, distributors, industry influencers, importers, delis, chefs, hoteliers and restaurateurs.
 
We’d like to introduce you to some of the highlights of our visit to the Speciality and Fine Food Fair 2015.  
 
Arcape's visit to Speciality & Fine Food Fair 2015 - 1
 From left to right, top row: Karen and Adam (¡Cho! Gazpacho), Richard (The Fickle Fish), and Natasha and team (Bio-tiful Dairy).
 From left to right, bottom row: Wild at Heart, Origin Honey, and Col's Kitchen
 
As always there was bags of energy and laughter emanating from Karen and Adam on the ¡Cho! Gazpacho stand! Great natural food too!
 
One taste of The Fickle Fish and we were hooked on the delicious smoked anchovies.
 
Wonderful story told to us by Natasha about the history behind the tasty Kefir from Bio-tiful Dairy.  Delicious Kefir!
 
What a delight to meet Wild at Heart from Kent who produce jellies, relishes and jams made from traditional wild English fruits and leaves. We loved the nettle pesto!
 
Traders were attracted to Origin Honey stand like bees to the honey pot. We like to think it was for the taste and not the tartan trousers!
 
Col's Kitchen were launching at the fair their saucy Italian sauces that are made from locally sourced ingredients using traditional cooking methods.  We’d like to wish these ladies the best of luck with their venture!
 
One of our favourite areas of the fair (close to our heart) is the area organised by ICEX (the Spanish equivalent of the Department for International Trade) and again we were not disappointed by the wide delicious range of Spanish food and drinks being showcased.
 
 From left to right, top row: Óscar and team (Iberica Delights), and Cerveza Mica.
  Bottom row: Master cutter Acacio Jiménez.
 
We sampled fantastic Spanish cheese from Óscar and his team from Iberica Delights who are based in Brighton.
 
It was great to chat with Cerveza Mica showcasing their craft beer made from barley in the highlands of Ribera del Duero.
 
Master cutter Acacio Jiménez showed his skills when carving the delicious jamón ibérico (Protected Denomination of Origin "Dehesa de Extremadura") and, yes, the samples we tasted were absolutely delicious!  If you are not familiar with jamón ibérico, it is a Spanish delicacy!  The cured meat is from pigs that roam in the oak forest enjoying a diet of acorns.
 
 From left to right, top row: Delicias de Burgos, Embutidos de Cardeña, and Pimentón de La Vera.
 From left to right, bottom row: Embutidos La Hoguera, Patatas Torres, and Sea Delight.
 
There were a number of stands representing different Denominaciones de Origen.  This is a system used in Spain to protect food and drink producers; it is similar to the European Union Protected Designation of Origin (PDO).  Cornish clotted cream, Jersey royal potatoes, and English wine are amongst the UK food and drink products with PDO.
 
We were delighted to chat with representatives of Embutidos de Cardeña and Pimentón de La Vera.
 
Delicias de Burgos were promoting their range of Spanish fine food.
 
There were fantastic Spanish meats exhibited on the La Hoguera stand.  Yummy!
 
Pleased to chat with Patatas Fritas Torres who had travelled from Spain to showcase their Great Taste Award winning Black Truffle Crisps amongst other flavours.
 
At the Sea Delight stand, we were impressed by their tasty Spanish anchovies.
 
It was great to catch up with some of our locals from Suffolk and Norfolk!
 
 
From left to right, top row: Scarlett & Mustard, Crispin (Munchy Seeds), and Ed (Edward's Cordial).
 From left to right, bottom row: Ruth and Graham (Norfolk Punch), Stokes Sauces, and Pump Street Bakery.
 
Delighted to see Suffolk company Scarlett & Mustard at the fair.  Did you know that the company branding was inspired by the game of Cluedo?
 
Munchy Seeds showcased their roasted and blended seeds.  Great to nibble or added to your breakfast as a treat!
 
A great mixer!  Suffolk manufacturer Edward’s Cordial at the Speciality and Fine Food Fair with its fruity cordial.
 
Straying across the county border, Ruth and Graham were making visitors aware of the interesting 13th century monastic recipes used by Norfolk Punch in their non-acholic herbal drinks.
 
Stokes Sauces have the perfect condiment for the British favourite Fish and Chips, their tomato sauce!
 
We were pleased to see the handmade chocolate from Pump Street Bakery in Orford being exhibited.  This bakery received a mention at the 2015 Oscars when Suffolk film director Mat Kirkby told the Hollywood audience that he was "particularly happy" to win the Oscar for best live action short film as it meant he would receive  one of the bakery's "fantastic doughnuts".
 
In addition to the wonderful tastes from the UK and Spain, we also encountered delicious tastes from around the world.
 
 
From left to right, top row: Lord Newborough (Rhug Organic Farm), Maxim's de Paris, and Beemster Cheese.
 From left to right, bottom row: Le Gruyère, The Meat Makers, and Abukuma Foods.
 
We chatted to Lord Newborough who was promoting organic meat from his Welsh estate Rhug Organic Farm.
 
As it was a long day speaking to all these wonderful food and drink connoisseurs, we did treat ourselves to a Maxim’s de Paris chocolate or two!
 
The Dutch were present promoting their great tasting Beemster Cheese.
 
We loved these little cows from Le Gruyère that promoted their superb Swiss cheese!  Scrumptious!
 
The Meat Makers travelled from Lithuania to showcase their 100% natural Beef Jerky!
 
Japanese food producers, Abukuma Foods charmed us with their baby peach compotes!
 
 
From left to right, top row: Jane and Jo (Moorish), Francesca and team (Global Tasty Trade), and Philip and Andrej (Pelagonia).
 From left to right, bottom row: Aude (Blossoms Syrup), Montecristi Chocolate, and Ten Acre.
 
It was all smiles from Jane and Jo from Moorish.  It was great to finally meet the team!
 
It was fantastic to catch up with Philip and Andrej from Pelagonia.  Their product range is created using traditional recipes from Macedonia.
 
We loved the pomegranate syrup produced by Blossoms Syrup bursting with fruit!  A pleasure to chat with Aude.
 
The Speciality Chocolate Fair is an area of the fair that is devoted to chocolate.  Another confession time!  We did indulge in a couple of squares of divine chocolate from Montecristi whose fantastic chocolate is made with cacao from Ecuador.  Two amazing chocolate samples in one day, we were so lucky!
 
Ten Acre brought the countryside to London with branding for their hand cooked crisps and popcorn!
 
Even though it was the end of the day, we encountered bags of energy and smiles from the Global Tasty Trade team who were launching their drinks range.  They tempted us with delicious Chai Latte Rooibos!  One for the road and a fantastic way to end the show!
 
So that was a flavour of the Speciality & Fine Food Fair in a nutshell!  We hope that you enjoyed our highlights.
 
Written by Caron Peirson

Caron is director at Arcape. Her expertise in social media marketing, and her excellent local business knowledge, translate into social media results for her clients. Caron is a keen photographer, and on her spare time enjoys art, travelling and the countryside.

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