FFD September 2019

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September 2019 Volume 20 Issue 8 gff.co.uk

Retailers on the record Find out what happened when we put these top operators in a room together

ALSO INSIDE Full guide to Speciality & Fine Food Fair 2019





September 2019 | Vol.20 Issue 8





You won’t hear much of my voice, though. It turns out that chairing meetings of this calibre requires barely any speaking at all.


By Michael Lane, Editor


It won’t have escaped many of you that our sector’s biggest trade event, Speciality & Fine Food Fair, is celebrating its 20th birthday this year. Funnily enough I tend to measure my own “work anniversary” (sorry for the LinkedIn-speak) via this show. My very first day on the job at Fine Food Digest was at the Fair back in 2011. And it’s safe to say that I didn’t have the best start. The first stand I visited, I failed to elicit any kind of response from a curmudgeonly soft drinks producer. Then I met someone who likened my favourite shirt to an Italian restaurant tablecloth. I also have a horrible feeling that I was introduced to a colleague, who I subsequently failed to recognise when I went into the office the following week. Even though I had to retire the offending garment, my colleagues will still attest to my undying love

for check shirts. Thankfully I’ve improved on the rest of the failings from that day eight years ago. In this column last year, I invoked that old BT ad with Bob Hoskins to promote the benefits of talking to one another. I’m happy to double down on that sentiment. SFFF is one of the best opportunities you’ll have all year to get in amongst the industry, catch up with people you know and meet others you didn’t before. It’s a great pit-stop between busy summer and hectic Christmas. We’ve got plenty of discussion in this edition too, not least our cover feature which saw us assemble top thinkers from every corner of fine food retailing: Fortnum & Mason, the multi-award-winning Farmer Copleys, top London chain Bayley & Sage, the up-and-coming cheese shop Slate, and Waitrose. It was quite a thing to witness those opinions, and a good deal of

wisdom, being traded across the top floor boardroom at Fortnum’s (thank you to them for being such kind hosts). You can read some edited highlights of the conversation in this magazine (page 30) but if you really want the immersive experience of being in that room, then make sure you download the latest episode of the Guild’s Fine Food Podcast. You won’t hear much of my voice, though. It turns out that chairing meetings of this calibre requires barely any speaking at all. If anything, it’s taught me that listening is just as great an art as talking. So, when you hit the show floor (or any work situation) this month – make sure you’ve taken time to understand what that supplier or that customer has said to you, as well as getting your own point across. Conversation is a two-way street. It’s a shame they haven’t realised that in Westminster yet.

September 2019 Volume 20 Issue 8 gff.co.uk

EDITORS’ CHOICE Chosen by Lauren Phillips, Assistant editor

Gosnells of London Hopped Mead

Retailers on the record Find out what happened when we put these top operators in a room together


Cover photography by Sam Pelly

Full guide to Speciality & Fine Food Fair 2019

One brand carving out a little niche for itself in a competitive drinks market is Gosnells of London with its mead in cans. The 4% ABV range plays up to the




Assistant editor: Lauren Phillips

Sales director: Sally Coley

Fax: +44 (0) 1747 824065

Editor: Michael Lane

Contributing editor: Mick Whitworth Reporter: Andrew Don

Art director: Mark Windsor

Contributors: Nick Baines, Katie Comer, Patrick McGuigan, Sam Pelly, Leivi Saltman, Lynda Searby, Simon Wild/Photopia


Sales manager: Ruth Debnam

Sales executive: Becky Haskett Sales support: Sam Coleman

ADDRESS Guild House, 23b Kingsmead Business Park Shaftesbury Road, Gillingham, Dorset SP8 5FB United Kingdom

renewed interest in the medieval drink thanks to the cult TV show Game of Thrones, but the boldly-coloured 330ml vessels bring it to a modern audience. Although the honey slightly overpowers the alcohol taste, the “Hopped” variety was the most interesting – reminiscent of a sweet cider but with a wine-like mouthfeel and beery notes. Read more on page 69. gosnells.co.uk

Tel: +44 (0) 1747 825200

Published by The Guild of Fine Food Ltd gff.co.uk


© The Guild of Fine Food Ltd

Printed by: Blackmore, Dorset

2019. Reproduction of whole or

Circulation: Bill Bruce, Emily Harris

publisher’s prior permission is

Fine Food Digest is published 11 times a year and is available on subscription for £50 p.a. inclusive of post and packing.

part of this magazine without the prohibited. The opinions expressed in articles and advertisements are

not necessarily those of the editor

Turn to page 85 for news from the Guild

or publisher.

Vol.20 Issue 8 | September 2019


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September 2019 | Vol.20 Issue 8

THE BIG PICTURE Best of British The best in British cured meat was celebrated last month at the British Charcuterie Live Awards, held at the BBC Countryfile Live show. A team of judges tackled the 59 gold, silver and bronze medal-winning products from the earlier round to determine the eventual trophy winners. On the day, the Champion of Champion Product and Champion of Champion Producer went to charcutier Tempus Foods and Yorkshire butcher Lishman’s of Ilkley respectively. This shot captures a display of all of the big winners, including Duchy Charcuterie’s Spalla, Great Glen’s green pepper venison salami, and Ludlow Farm Shop’s Gloucester Old Spot garlic & fennel salami. Read more about the awards on page 25. Photograph: Leivi Saltman


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September 2019 | Vol.20 Issue 8



Importers’ concerns grow as no-deal Brexit looks more likely By Andrew Don

The speciality food industry has been weighing up its import options since new prime minister Boris Johnson started talking up prospects of a no-deal Brexit. Many in the industry believe the absence of a deal will hike prices and create shortages and disruption. Tim Rycroft, chief operating office of the Food & Drink Federation (FDF), told Talk Radio that disruption at ports would lead to shortages – particularly fresh food – for the weeks and months after a no-deal Brexit, and also random shortages of other foods. Kate Shirley-Quirk, director of Spanish food specialist Delicioso UK, said her company had stockpiled for the previous Brexit deadline of 29th March before its extension until 31st October.

“The good thing is if it is going to be the end of October, we will have most of our stock in for Christmas at that stage,” she told FFD. “It’s not likely we will need a lot more stock in November/December so there’s a little bit of time to allow the chaos to settle.” Pricing could be an issue, she said, because of uncertainty around the pound. “We try hard not to increase our prices for our customers but if the pound bottoms out we have no choice.” Seggiano’s David Harrison said he could not do much because Italians were not back from holiday until the last week of August when he would look at his Christmas ordering. “Stockpiling is difficult because we don’t have the cash flow,” he said. “Cash flow is already difficult with the severely weakening pound and we don’t have the space anyway. Quite






The arrival of Boris Johnson as the new prime minister has brought with it an increasing likelihood of a no-deal Brexit

honestly we are right in the shit here.” Stefano Cuomo, Macknade Fine Foods managing director, said the Kent retailer worked with a good transport agency which had been updating him about what it would need to do to import goods. “We would be looking to refine our offer, really focussing on the experience and the quality of the produce we’ve got.” Cuomo said he was more concerned about the likelihood of a recession and

whether people wanted to buy items, as opposed to whether it had the product to stock. “As an SME, the last thing you want to be doing is throwing a whole load of money into stock.” The latest FDF Business Confidence Report covering 20th June20th July, shows Brexitrelated costs continue to pose a threat, with 47% reporting increased costs of stockpiling and 39% a decline in warehousing availability.

“What are you going to do to compensate our farmers who relied for too long on subsidies from the EU? How are you going to make up that shortfall? I would like him to ensure any subsidies were either replaced or reflected by an increase in trade internally. It would be nice to be self-sufficient as a nation but we are so far from that.” PETER THEMANS OWNER,



FSA survey uncovers consumer food concerns Chemicals from the environment, the use of pesticides, waste and animal welfare are among the top concerns the public have about the food they buy, a new survey revealed. The Food Standards Agency’s Public Attitudes Tracker survey, which monitors consumer attitudes to food-related issues in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, also showed how much importance people place on the use of food hygiene rating stickers. Two thirds said food hygiene rating stickers were the way they knew about hygiene standards. The poll of more than 2,000 adults identified that 51% were concerned about food waste, and 49% about the amount of sugar in food.

Waitrose extends trial of Unpacked concept

customers gave feedback on the trial and Tor Harris, head of corporate social responsibility, said Waitrose now had the confidence that they were prepared to change the way they shopped. “We are keen to take the Unpacked concept forward and these additional tests will help us achieve this as well as understand its commercial viability,” he said.

Waitrose’s anti-plastic on various aspects of the trial at one of its Oxford format. branches appears to have The new stores in the passed its first hurdle after trial will have a dedicated the supermarket chain said refillable zone, including it was rolling out the trial to dispensers for dried three other stores. products, frozen pick & mix, The chain’s coffee, wine and beer refills, “Unpacked” pilot at the as well as Ecover detergent Botley Road store was and washing-up liquid earmarked to end on 18th refillables. August but the company More than 7,000 has decided to continue it, as well as roll it out to stores in Cheltenham, this month, and Abingdon and Wallingford (both in Oxfordshire) in November. Waitrose removed the packaging from more than 200 lines in the store The Unpacked concept has been running in Waitrose’s Botley Road, Oxford, and sought branch since August and will now be rolled out to three other stores customer feedback

“I’d ask him can we really get Brexit done? Because it’s what everybody wants. Get it finished with. It’s gone on too long. What I’m hearing is all the speculation about the damage that Brexit may or may not do, but it’s the limbo land we are in that is doing the damage.”




“Where do you start? I’d ask him whether he genuinely understands the impact that Brexit will have on retail in the UK or whether he simply doesn’t care. The uncertainty is already having an impact but there will be higher prices, less choice for the consumer and an economy in freefall.” Vol.20 Issue 8 | September 2019




M&S takes cues from farm shops for new food store format

IN BRIEF The UK’s cherry industry is blossoming thanks to predictions of a bumper harvest this year. About 6,500 tonnes of cherries are expected to be produced in 2019 – double that picked in 2018.

By Andrew Don

A new food store format – focussed heavily on produce and frozen cabinets – being trialled by Marks and Spencer (M&S) could prove stiff competition to independent farm shops. The “Renewal” trial, unveiled in the M&S Hempstead Valley branch in Kent, has a market stallstyle fresh produce section, delicatessen and sizeable frozen food section, offering more than 290 lines. The store’s food hall has grown from 9,500 sq ft to more than 16,000 sq ft, which has allowed for a 30% increase in products. It has also added an in-store bakery and plastic packaging has been removed from fresh loaves. Stuart Machin, M&S food managing director said “Renewal” was not simply about store design or a facelift. It was about a total renewal of everything M&S did and creating a store experience. He said: “Our Renewal

The M&S ‘Renewal’ trial at Hempstead Valley features an upgraded produce section

vision is about having the mind of a supermarket – being efficient in our operations and processes – but with the soul of a fresh market – protecting the magic customers love about M&S Food – the freshness, the quality and the fun.” Machin said Hempstead Valley was just the starting point for the renewal programme. A “handful” of stores are expected to be used as test beds before any further decisions are made about rolling out concepts. He added: “We want M&S Food to be an enjoyable shopping destination, where

Villiers in at Defra after Gove goes Incoming Prime Minister Boris Johnson has reshuffled Cabinet and appointed Theresa Villiers as Secretary Of State at the Department of Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (DEFRA). She replaced Michael Gove, who Johnson appointed Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster. George Eustice has been


reappointed as minister for agriculture, fisheries & food. The MP for Camborne & Redruth, whose family runs a fruit farm and farm shop, had resigned from the post in February. Villiers’ previous ministerial history includes stints as Secretary of State for Northern Ireland from September 2012 until July 2016, and a transport minister from May 2010 until September 2012. In her first speech, at Countryfile Live at Blenheim Palace on 1st August, Villiers said she firmly believed the need to get on with Brexit and leave by 31st October. “We’re giving the very closest attention to the interests of food and farming businesses as we work towards exit day,” she said.

September 2019 | Vol.20 Issue 8

customers come to buy delicious tasting quality food at a great everyday price. To do this we need to broaden our appeal and be more relevant, more often.” Rupert Titchmarsh, Cowdray Farm Shop & Café general manager, thought the format would be a threat to farm shops that were not doing a particularly good job. He said: “M&S has been struggling for a while now and they are constantly trying different things and clearly decided to look at areas they consider to be potentially profitable, so they are taking their lead from

farm shops.” Catherine Shuttleworth, chief executive at marketing agency Savvy, said the trial store saw M&S returning to “great greengrocery and fresh food at its best”. She said farm shops should ensure they communicated to their shoppers about the way in which they did business locally and without costly plastic. “This is a really important point of difference that retailers in the mainstream space – even M&S – will find very difficult to replicate.”

WRAP survey discovers scale of food waste in production Sustainability body WRAP hopes new insights, revealed by its latest survey research, into the scale of surplus and food waste on UK farms will help reduce the problem. Its survey, described as “the most detailed” to date, found that around 3.6m tonnes of food surplus and waste occur in primary production every year – worth £1.2bn at farm gate prices. Surplus is defined as material at risk of becoming waste, but goes instead for redistribution, animal feed, or to become bio-based materials. WRAP estimates that food waste accounts for 1.6m tonnes of the total figure, or around 3% of production with a market

value of around £650m. Sugar beet, potatoes and carrots made up more than half of the overall waste by weight, with the top 10 products accounting for 80% of the total weight. Peter Maddox, director of WRAP said the findings

1.6m tonnes of


waste d u r i n g p r i m a r y production in UK annually Source: WRAP

Just So Italian is opening in St Martin’s Square, Leicester, this autumn. The company – which also sells food from Italy online and to wholesale customers – currently has delicatessens in Market Harborough (Leicestershire) and Stamford (Lincolnshire). The Classic Farm Shop in St Peter, Jersey, in the Channel Islands, has closed after 11 years of trading. The business will continue to sell its own milk via two vending machines but the premises has reopened as a pet shop.

showed “huge” potential for reducing the amount of surplus and waste by promoting best practice and that was where its work was now focused. “We want to increase redistribution of surplus food as has happened across the retail sector, and I am pleased this will now be much easier through the Food Surplus Network.” When grouped by product type, horticultural crops make up 54% of the total, cereals 30%, livestock 8% and milk 8%. Jack Ward, chief executive of the British Growers Association, said: “Having new insights into the scale of food waste and under-utilised production on farm is a positive step forward, and a resource that should be of use to many growers and the wider supply chain.”


September 2019 | Vol.20 Issue 8

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September 2019 | Vol.20 Issue 8


Business rates scammers preying on independents By Andrew Don

Growing confusion around the new business rates appeals system has become a breeding ground for fake consultants charging unsuspecting speciality food businesses for their help. The Valuation Office Agency (VOA) has, for the first time, published a comprehensive list of the myriad business rate scams, to which speciality food retailers and other small businesses could fall victim. Davies & Co’s Barry Davies, a chartered surveyor who specialises in farm attractions, told FFD that victims typically paid scammers £350-£500 upfront with the promise that these rogue agents could appeal their rates only to hear nothing more. The VOA has identified nine different scams. They include rogue agents, who

ACS: Food in demand Speciality food shops have once again come top of the list of services that people want more of on the high street, in Association of Convenience Stores’ latest Community Barometer report. The poll of 2,016 UK adults, conducted by the ACS, found that widespread closures of dedicated butchers, bakeries and other food stores have left people crying out for more specialist food shops. Speciality food stores also came top of the ‘most wanted’ in the 2018 Community Barometer. The ACS said that as specialist services declined, convenience stores had been increasingly looking to invest to make them a part of their offer to customers. Find out more about the report at acs.org.uk

Farm shops in particular have proved ripe for being ripped off by fake agents and fake business rates consultants

claim they are from the VOA, requesting bank details on the premise of a refund, but stealing money instead. Others are asking shops to pay for an inspection. Other scammers are incorrectly telling businesses that they must, by law, be represented by an agent to challenge their band. There is also a con revolving around supposedly submitting an

appeal to the VOA on their behalf, backed up by forged acknowledgment notices. John Webber, head of business rating at Colliers International said: “It’s disturbing to see the rise in scams, but in a market where businesses are finding it increasingly difficult to challenge their rating assessments themselves due to the unmitigated disaster of Check, Challenge, Appeal [the new online appeals

DOWN ON THE FARM Eastington Farm Shop (pictured) has opened at Middlehall Farm, in Stroud, Gloucestershire. It boasts a loose dry-food selection with gravity-feed dispensers. The product range includes fresh local meat, plastic-free fruit and veg, bread, local honey, cakes and fresh coffee. It encourages customers to reuse their egg boxes when returning to buy eggs. It opens Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays, 8am-6pm. Pinewood Nurseries & Farm Shop in Stoke Poges, Buck, is doing its

bit by recently becoming a Terracycle Recycle Station. Customers can now recycle many items the local council won’t take – including writing instruments, beauty products and baby food pouches – all helping to divert waste from landfills. pinewoodnurseries.co.uk/ farmshop/ Groombridge Farm Shop, near Tunbridge Wells, has

system], some businesses are getting desperate and turning to agents for help. “Indeed, CCA puts significant onus on rate payers to carry out a lot of upfront work which plays into the hands of the money opportunist cowboys.” Webber said that both the appeals system, and the structure of business rates themselves, would have to be reformed again to put a stop to malpractices. “The government really needs to get a grip on this now,” he said. When contacted, the VOA referred FFD to Action Fraud and the Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government, but no response had been received at time of going to press. Robert Copley, coowner of Farmer Copleys in Pontefract, West Yorkshire, and chair of the Farm Retail Association, worked with Barry Davies to reduce his rates bill. He said this proved that the conventional sources of help are still the best solution.

IN BRIEF Lidl has rolled out new Green Bags across its UK and Ireland stores. They cost 69p for two, and provide a reusable alternative to single-use small fruit and vegetable bags. The German retailer has pledged to reduce its own-brand plastic packaging by 20% by 2022. Anyone carrying a Wines & Spirits Education Trust student card will receive a £45 discount when booking onto a Academy of Cheese Level One course with the Guild of Fine Food. To book, contact jilly.sitch@ gff.co.uk The latest data from insurer NFU Mutual shows that rural crime is at its highest in seven years – up 12% in 2018. The increase was largely due to thefts of agricultural vehicles like tractors.

The latest from farm shops across the country reopened with more retail space and a new Coffee Corner. Some 90% of the produce sold at the shop is sourced from local farms and businesses in Kent and Sussex, including its own New Park Farm. groombridgefarmshop.co.uk Penshaw Farm Shop’s inhouse butcher, Lisa Gardner has been named as one of four finalists in the Craft

Butchery category of the National Women in Meat Industry Awards 2019. The winner will be announced during a ceremony in London this November. penshawfarmshop.co.uk Occombe Farm, in south Devon, has unveiled plans for a regeneration project that will incorporate a mix of indoor and outdoor play areas and activities, alongside a much larger farm shop (carrying West Country produce and gifts), an improved café and flexible activity space with new rental units. countryside-trust.org.uk/ occombe

In association with

Fabulous Farm Shops fabulousfarmshops.co.uk

Vol.20 Issue 8 | September 2019


SHOP TALK IF I’D KNOWN THEN WHAT I KNOW NOW... IAN EVANS, co-owner, Broad Bean Delicatessen, Ludlow I have a degree in marine biology and a Masters in fish farming, but as there aren’t many fish farms in the UK, I ended up landing a traineeship with a butcher on the Sandringham Estate, which allowed me to cut my teeth on someone else’s time. By 2015, I felt I’d done as much as could for my former employer and was ready to go it alone. There are lots of delis around but most are virtually sandwich bars or coffee shops. I wanted to open a ‘proper’ delicatessen, like Wally’s in Cardiff. The owners of Broad Bean were looking to sell, so in Christmas 2015 I quit my job in Norfolk and the entire family moved to Ludlow. My wife, Alice, also put her career as a special needs teacher on hold to get the deli off the ground. It was six months before the sale actually went through and in this time we had to live off savings. The shop, which has been around for 40 years, had a wholefood focus. A third of the shelf space was dedicated to health supplements and alternative cleaning products and another third to loose-weigh foods. Although there were two refrigerated serveovers, these were under-utilised and I could immediately see potential for filling them with cheese, pies, olives, charcuterie etc. We invested heavily in an EPoS system to inform our decisions. This quickly showed that none of the supplements were worth keeping, so we cleared them all from the shelves, creating Continental- and Asian-themed bays in their place. We needed people to start talking about us and decided that offering exceptional customer service and value for money by cutting margins on some ambient goods was the way to go. We sell Barilla pasta cheaper than you can buy it in Tesco. This might sound like a dangerous strategy but it’s a talking point and we’ve countered it by bringing in higher margin items like tea, coffee and cheese. We have increased our turnover by 50% in the last three years without a significant reduction in profit. Our EPoS system also showed that sales were dropping off between 12:30pm and 2pm, so this time last year we installed a kitchen to enable us to target the lunchtime trade with quiches, pies, soups and salad boxes. Now, instead of there being a slump in sales, there is a spike. This year, we won Deli of the Year in the Farm Shop & Deli Awards and last year, we were finalists in the Shop of the Year Awards, where the judge and mystery shopper gave us really useful feedback about improving the flow of the shop. We are now working with retail psychologist The Silent Sales Girl to reconfigure our space. Interview Lynda Searby Photography Simon Wild/Photopia


September 2019 | Vol.20 Issue 8

CONFESSIONS OF A DELI OWNER ANONYMOUS TALES FROM BEHIND THE COUNTER MY CHRISTMAS ORDERING STARTED in January with a review of 2018. I checked my notes, had a team review, tidied up the new customer and customer order lists for remarketing, rebuilt my budgets and most of the work was done. Come June, I was ordering in catalogues, sending forward order emails and holding back bits until I met the reps. As of now, it’s all tied up and I can concentrate on prepping the marketing and warming the customers up to ensure they don’t disappear up a supermarket’s back passage and, in a moment of weakness, blow 30% of their festive spend on a Port & Stilton promotion. Except I haven’t. Part of the problem of being in business as long as I have is that I fool myself I can do the regular stuff in my sleep. It conforms to that old joke: “Why did Santa cross the road? Because he does it every year.” Not funny, but Christmas can seem like that. Plan to repeat almost everything – and hope it doesn’t snow. But I am always a bit behind the pace. Nodding off in January to make those detailed notes I made after cashing up last November and December seem particularly indecipherable, and most of my team can’t remember or have


Why did Santa cross the road? Because he does it every year. gone back to university. So, I sit down with my assistant manager – eating Easter bunnies we’ve got left over – and try to remember what ran out and when. It might just help us get the jump on customers’ wallets. Same as I did last year, a couple of late nights and the budgets were done, the reorders ready and the supplier list stacked. But was I ready when the reps came through the door? No. You can’t take Christmas seriously when its 40°C outside. We have to have our rep meetings in the café, which can be fun. Friendly customers lean over and check the packaging, pricing and taste of

products. I ask: “Do you like that?” or “Is this good value?”. The customers love it. I’m one of those people who has difficulty telling the rep a product is shit, overpriced and wouldn’t sell in a thousand years as they smile and tell you it’s sold brilliantly at some other deli. Having a customer breezily say it tastes like fairy liquid is a great help. Reps are a dying breed, though. For the most part ordering stock is a gradual affair, with stock changes trickling through the year, samples arriving and there’s opportunity to trial them. Christmas is not so seamless. I remember ordering a mini shopping trolley with some retro sweets in it. I never saw it (except in a photo) until it came in October. For something the child of Barbie could have pushed round a supermarket, £8.95 proved too steep. We discounted it immediately and there were still some left for me to give to my god children. The only bit I really like is the Speciality and Fine Food Fair, I’m like a 10-year-old with pocket money to spend. I always hold some Christmas budget for it, hoping to find something to move us on from last year’s effort. So I’ll see you there. I’m the one with sore feet.


Spot the difference Thank you, madam. That will be £21.35

Ah. Should’ve asked about crackers, too. Oh well, I expect they’re cheaper at Tesco anyway.

Well, you’ve got the cheese and the salami. How about some crackers to go with that?

Oh Mr Deli, you are a mind reader!

FFD says: Hopefully you didn’t have to look too hard to solve this “puzzle”, but it’s worth spelling out that you should never miss an opportunity to upsell. The worst that will happen is a customer will say “no”. But if you don’t try, then you might be missing out on a sales boost and hooking that person onto another must-have, repeat-buy item. If this makes you uncomfortable, just remember that it’s a retailing crime not to offer a customer crackers if they are buying cheese.

With kind permission of Geobra Brandstätter Stiftung & Co. KG, Germany. PLAYMOBIL is a registered trademark of Geobra Brandstätter Stiftung & Co. KG, for which also the displayed PLAYMOBIL toy figures are protected.

Vol.20 Issue 8 | September 2019



September 2019 | Vol.20 Issue 8

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September 2019 | Vol.20 Issue 8





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September 2019 | Vol.20 Issue 8


news & views from the cheese counter

Swaledale back from the brink as new investors take up the mantle By Patrick McGuigan

Swaledale cheese, which has been made in Yorkshire for a thousand years, has been saved from extinction after the country’s last producer was salvaged by two entrepreneurs. The crumbly cheese, which holds two PDOs covering cows’ and ewes’ milk versions, was in danger of being lost forever when the Swaledale Cheese Company was forced into liquidation in April because of poor sales. However, two investors have saved the business, which was first set up by the Reed family in 1987, by buying up the company’s assets, including its production premises in Richmond, North Yorkshire.

Richard Darbishire, who was a co-founder of ice cream business R&R, and Swedish businessman Bengt Odner, have re-employed the company’s cheesemaker Nick Wormald and plan to start making Swaledale and Swaledale Blue using locally sourced, pasteurised cows’ milk. “We managed to buy the company just in the nick of time,” said Darbishire. “We think the market is right for these kinds of cheeses. There is big demand for local produce and hard, artisan cheeses are growing. We are re-designing the branding and are working to improve product quality. The cheese wasn’t quite good enough previously, but there is definitely a big local following.”

The 1,000-year tradition of Swaledale looks set to continue after the last maker of the Yorkshire cheese was rescued from closure

Cheese is expected to be available in the runup to Christmas with the company keen to focus on the independent retail market and re-forge relationships with wholesalers, such as Carron Lodge and Michael Lee. The dairy has the capacity to make 4.5 tonnes of cheese a month and previously produced a wide range, including flavoured products, cheddar and goats’ cheeses, as well as Swaledale. Darbishire said he plans to produce a much smaller range, focusing on key product lines. Swaledale cheese dates back to the 11th century when Norman monks made sheep’s milk cheeses in the Yorkshire Dales. Andy Swinscoe, owner of the Courtyard Dairy in Settle, said that it was “positive news” that the business would continue. “It’s a cheese with a rich history so it’s good that it’s being kept alive,” he said, although warned that there was strong competition in the Dales cheese market. “There are already a lot of good cows’ milk cheeses made in the area, from very established products like Hawes Wensleydale to new raw milk cheeses like Stonebeck and Fellstone.”

The Gouda-style cheese Wyfe of Bath, which is made by the Bath Soft Cheese Co, was named Supreme Champion from more than 5,000 cheeses judged at this year’s International Cheese & Dairy Awards a the Nantwich agricultural show.

Vegan cheesemonger La Fauxmagerie, which made headlines when it opened in February, is closing its Brixton store to move to much larger premises near Brick Lane in East London. The shop was criticised by the dairy industry for calling its milk-free products ‘cheese’.

Buffalo Blue

Shepherds Purse stopped making its popular Buffalo Blue cheese several years ago because of milk supply issues. But the Yorkshire company has now managed to secure a new supply of the rich milk from a British farm with its own herd of water buffaloes. The dense, moist cheese is streaked with greenblue veins and is rich and salty with umami notes.

Ginger Biscuits Ginger is a natural friend for blue cheese – the fragrant spice picks up on the tang of the veins. Furniss’ West Country Gingerbread, which is actually a crunchy ginger biscuit, works particularly well with Buffalo Blue thanks to its rusk-like texture, which contrasts with the soft cheese. Smoked Butter Apple Masham-based Rosebud Preserves has launched a new product called Smoked Butter Apple for Cheese, which is a terrific match for blues. Despite the name, the product contains no butter, but is more like an apple purée made with Bramley, Granny Smith and Smoked Bramleys, plus cider vinegar, vanilla and whisky. It’s sweet and tart with a remarkable smokey, boozy depth that both complements and contrasts this cheese.


Research into the genetics of Penicillium roqueforti suggests that the blue mould originally comes from a rye pathogen in bread, rather than the caves of Roquefort, which have long been thought to be the source of the blue veins in the famous French ewe’s milk cheese.


Paxton & Whitfield’s new Make Your Own cheeseboard kits include a selection of cheeses, accompaniments and step-bystep instructions to cutting, plating and serving cheese like a true professional. The range also includes cheese and homeware packs, such as Make Your Own Baked Camembert (£40), which includes a ceramic baker, 250g Camembert de Normandie and accompaniments.

Rémy Martin XO This extra-aged cognac is made with Champagne grapes and matured in oak barrels until it has a complex flavour that takes in dried fruit, vanilla and aromatic notes. At 40%, there is enough fire from the alcohol to carry the flavours and help them stand up to the tang and clotted cream richness of the cheese. Vol.20 Issue 8 | September 2019



news & views from the cheese counter

Goat specialist Rosary develops mould-ripened varieties


Its fresh goats’ cheeses has been a fixture on deli counters for more than 30 years, but now Salisbury-based Rosary is branching out with its first mould-ripened cheeses. The company, which was set up by Chris and Clare Moody in 1988, has built a separate dairy at its premises in Landford, which will be used to make mould- and yeast-ripened goats’ cheeses. The first, in what could become a range of aged products, is a pasteurised Crottin-style cheese with a wrinkly rind called St Ella. The cheese, which is being launched through Harvey & Brockless this month, weighs 70g and is aged for around two weeks. “It’s something we’ve been dabbling with for a few years, but we needed to build separate premises to stop the moulds crossing over into our other [fresh] cheeses,” said Chris Moody. “We think there’s a big market for smaller goats’ cheeses, especially with chefs,

CHEESE IN PROFILE with Morbier PDO What’s the story? Morbier is a distinctive washed rind cheese with a black stripe of charred vegetable matter through its middle. It is made in the Jura mountains of the Franche-Comte region using raw milk from Montbéliarde or French Simmental cows. Historically, the cheese was made on farms in copper cauldrons using both evening and morning milk, the ash from the cauldrons 18

Harvey & Brockless

By Patrick McGuigan

Rosary has set up a separate dairy to develop aged cheeses like the new Crottin-style St Ella

who like the fact they can be portioned easily, but can also be served whole on a cheeseboard.” The new 105 sq m premises, which include three maturing rooms and a processing area, could increase capacity by up to 20 tonnes a year, said Moody. Rosary currently makes around 90 tonnes of fresh cheese at its

main 315 sq m dairy each year. The company has also started producing fresh goats’ curds in 500g and 1kg tubs, distributed by Albion and Country Fare. Much of the impetus for the new products comes from the Moody’s 28-year-old son Daniel, who has joined the business.

Ian Wellens, The Cheese Shed, Devon Internet retailer The Cheese Shed started in 2006, so there isn’t much owner Ian Wellens doesn’t know about online selling. Placing near the top of searches is important, he says, (which happens naturally for such an established site) but, just like bricks-and-mortar retailing, strong personal relationships are key. “You need a good relationship with your courier,” he says. “We use APC because we have a contact we can speak to directly. I’d avoid anywhere that puts you through to a call centre.” Providing personal customer service is also vital. “You have to be good on the phone. People can’t pop into your shop, so they want that human touch and reassurance.” The Cheese Shed takes all its own photography for the website so that it has a consistent style and there is plenty of background about the cheesemakers. “It’s not just a piece of cheese – there’s a story about the people and places behind it.”

was scraped off and sprinkled onto the evening curds to protect them until the morning when there was enough milk to complete the cheese.

flavours with a hint of fruit. Variations: None.

Milk: Unpasteurised cows’ milk, animal rennet. How is it made? The cheese is now made in one process by about forty

September 2019 | Vol.20 Issue 8

cheesemakers producing 10,000 tons per year. The raw milk is coagulated at below 40°C and the curd is cut into 1cm cubes, pressed into wheels and matured for 2 months. The wheels are washed in a brine solution during maturation resulting

in an orangey-pink rind. Appearance & texture: Beneath the pungent rind of the large flat wheels is a supple and springy cheese, sometimes with small holes in the straw-coloured paste. Bringing the cheese up to room temperature reveals milky, vanilla, fudge

Cheesemonger tip: Customers are always intrigued by the distinctive black line, tell the story! It is ideal on a cheese board or platter. Recommend serving it with crisp apples and a white wine from the Jura region. Chef’s recommendation: Morbier is a great melting cheese, delicious as an alternative pizza cheese or in a raclette. Serve it with a light spicy Arbois red wine.

Whether you have a professional or personal interest in cheese, the Academy of Cheese is a not-for-profit organisation, providing a comprehensive industry recognised certification. Level One courses are available across the UK. Visit academyofcheese.org to start your journey to Master of Cheese.

We did it again! 6 Awards in the 2019 Great Taste Awards!

GREAT TASTING CHEESE FROM FIFE “utterly deliciousâ€?‌ “very moreish cheese’’ â€Śâ€œdeeply satisfying’’‌ “outstanding’’

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Vol.20 Issue 8 | September 2019


Vol.20 Issue 8 | September 2019



news and views from the cheese counter

There is a huge interest in British cheese and where it comes from

By truck and… conveyor belt Since 2014, Matthew Carver has pioneered new ways of serving British cheese. Here’s his latest idea. Interview by Patrick McGuigan

Mathew Carver is going a bit misty eyed as he tells the tale of his cheese epiphany. Disillusioned with his job, he had embarked on a massive US road trip. “I was trying to decide what I wanted to do with my life, checking out street food markets along the way and, at every single one, the most popular traders were selling grilled cheese sandwiches,” he tells FFD. “And they weren’t using plastic orange slices, it was all amazing artisan cheese. I went to a really cool cheese bar in San Francisco called Mission and that’s when it hit me. I’d never realised just how interesting and delicious cheese could be.” Carver promptly returned to the UK and began setting up a cheese empire, initially with a converted ice cream van called Alfie, serving grilled cheese sandwiches at festivals under The Cheese Truck banner. A second van was added soon after, before a move into restaurants with the opening of The Cheese Bar in Camden Market in 2017 and Pick & Cheese, the world’s first cheese conveyor belt restaurant, in Covent Garden this month. A third site, The Cheese Barge, will open in the autumn at Paddington Basin. What unites the different strands of the business is a strong commitment to using artisan British cheeses, such as Quicke’s cheddar, Cropwell Bishop Stilton, Tunworth and Baron Bigod. “When I got back from the US, I discovered lots of similarities with what was happening with the British cheese story,” he says. “There are so many small producers making amazing cheese here. I really want to tell that story to a wider

audience.” Highlights of Carver’s mission to spread the word include selling 12,000 toasties at Glastonbury in 2015 and attending 28 festivals the following year, getting through almost 15 tonnes of cheese in the process. He also crowdfunded more than £100k in three days to set up The Cheese Bar. “We had posters, leaflets and T-shirts printed saying ‘Invest in the Cheese Bar’, but on the day they arrived we had already hit our target,” he says. “There is a huge interest in British cheese and where it comes from. It is like an obsession for a lot of people.” A second round of crowd-funding last year proved tougher but the company still managed to hit its £200k target. Most has been invested in Pick & Cheese, which is part of the new Seven Dials Market – a permanent street food market and restaurant hall in Covent Garden. People sit at a central bar and pick from a 40-metre conveyor belt loaded with cheese plates, each with their own chef-made accompaniment. Think of it as a mobile cheeseboard with options such as Coolea with hazelnut brittle, Sparkenhoe Red Leicester with candied chillies and Beenleigh Blue with fig and chocolate spread. Prices range from £2.95 to £5.25 for a 30-40g portion with customers free to pick one cheese or several. Hot melted cheese dishes, cheese-flavoured ice cream and matching craft beers and natural wines are also on the menu, but it’s the unique condiments that are key to the concept, says Carver. “A lot of restaurants and delis still just stick to crackers and chutney, but we want to elevate the experience and be more adventurous. It’s about pushing the boundaries.” Expect a few more cheese epiphanies to come off that conveyor belt soon. thecheesebar.com



Truffled Baron Bigod 1

For this Cheese Bar signature, chefs slice the raw milk brie-style Baron Bigod in half horizontally and add a layer of truffle paste, before the cheese is sandwiched back together. The paste is made with Blackmore Vale mascarpone mixed with white truffle oil and black truffle paste. The cheese is matured for three days before serving to let the truffle flavour fully penetrate.



The dish, which costs £7.50, also includes crackers and pickled grapes, which are made by pickling grapes in red wine vinegar, rosemary and fennel seed for three days.

The garlicky truffle paste supercharges the gooey cheese, elevating the intensity and melding nicely with its mushroom and brassica notes. The pickled grapes cut through the richness of the cheese, adding a refreshing burst of acidity.

Vol.20 Issue 8 | September 2019


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Gwlad.Gwlad. #BlasCymru This is Wales. #TasteWales Come and visit us on stands 1710/1720/1820 at the Speciality & Fine Food Fair for a range of new and innovative food and drink products.

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September 2019 | Vol.20 Issue 8

making more of British & Continental charcuterie

Lishman’s and Tempus top British Charcuterie Live By Mick Whitworth

Two English cured meats and a twist on an Italian classic took Yorkshire butcher Lishman’s of Ilkley to the

top of this year’s British Charcuterie Live Awards (BCLAs). Owner David Lishman collected the Champion

Producer trophy for the firm’s overall performance, with three high-scoring products: smoked dry-cured streaky bacon, York air-dried

David Lishman collects the BCLA Champion Producer award from BCLA founder Henrietta Green. Achari salami from Tempus (inset) was Champion Product

ham and beef & red wine pepperoni. Last year’s overall ‘Best Producer’ winner, Tempus, picked up the Champion Product title at this year’s awards final – held on 1st August at BBC Countryfile Live Show, in the grounds of Blenheim Palace – for its spicy Achari salami. The awards were staged in the British Charcuterie Live Tent at the BBC show, with a team of judges assessing 59 gold, silver and bronze award winners selected from among 450 entries in first-round judging earlier this summer. This year’s BCLAs included three new “star awards”, chosen from across eight product classes. They are Best New Product (new to market since September 2018), won by Duchy Charcuterie for its Spalla; Best Game Product, won by Great Glen for its multi-award winning green pepper venison salami; and Home Grown (best product from producers’ own livestock), won by Ludlow Farm Shop with its Gloucester Old Spot garlic & fennel salami. Tempus founders Dhruv Baker and Tom Whitaker – who were named overall

champions at the 2019 British Cured Meat Awards – also saw their Achari salami take the traditional and heritage award at the BCLAs. The final judges included head judge John Gower, chef Ben Tish, Monika Linton of Brindisa, charcuterie maker and tutor Rich Summers, Michela Pagano of The Fine Cheese Co and Shane Holland of Slow Food UK. There were fewer medal winners than in the inaugural BCLAs last year, but according to awards founder Henrietta Green, this reflects the growing sophistication of the process. “The numbers were up this year, with 30 new producers entering,” she said, “but with the benefit of experience, we’ve strengthened the judging process for 2019. “We allowed more time for our judges to consider and explore the products entered and made sure we all adhered to stricter parameters. We tightened up the marking process – we want our Gold Medal and Best of Class winners to feel that they’ve won the British Charcuterie equivalent of a three Michelin star award.” britishcharcuterie.live 702kJ/167kcal 5.1g 1.9g 2.1g 1.8g 28.2g 3.4g




be brave and diverse.” There is also detailed on-pack information on each product, such as the truffle-infused lardo made with “the thickest back-fat from free-range Middle White pics, bred at Little Oak Farm in Exmoor National Park...dry cured with a blend of herbs and spices for three months.” Other lines in the Capreolus range include air-dried ham and pork loin, beech-smoked pastrami, ‘nduja and duck confit. capreolusf nefoods.co.uk


(80g, £4.26) and chorizo (80g, £2.80), each of which collected a Great Taste 3-star this year. Explaining the new pack designs, Richards said different stone and fossil images were being used to identify each product in the range, with a deliberate move away from rustic imagery to “make them stand out in an increasingly crowded charcuterie market”. “We haven’t used pictures of pigs, trees, fields, flat caps or meats. We felt these colours would

1345kJ/320kcal 23.8g 8.5g 1.2g 0.4g 25.8g 3.4g

for Christmas hamper products. Karen Richards, who runs Capreolus with husband David, said the rebrand was happening in two phases. Vac-pack labels will carry the new design from this month, with the business switching to “more recylable” modified atmosphere packs with card sleeves by Christmas. Products boasting the new look include guanciale (100g vac-pack, trade price £3.31), Dorset coppa (80g, £3.76), smoked mutton


Imagery of stone and fossils from Dorset‘s Jurassic Coast is combined with detailed notes on ingredients and suppliers in dramatic new branding from Capreolus Fine Food. The upgraded packaging was due to arrive at the company’s rural base near Beaminster as FFD went to press, in time for its launch at the Speciality & Fine Food Fair. It has already had a positive response from Selfridges, which will stock the range and is looking at options

1323kJ/317kcal 21.2g 7.7g 0.9g 0.7g 30.9g 4.3g

By Mick Whitworth



Jurassic imagery sets Dorset brand apart from rustic rivals

The ‘brave and diverse’ designs are a departure from traditional cured meat imagery


Vol.20 Issue 8 | September 2019



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the secrets of smarter foodservice

The art of turning tables If you’ve got tables in your shop, then you need to make them work for you. Lauren Phillips talks to Will Doyle, co-owner of Broadway Deli, about serving efficiently without alienating customers. Café areas are great because they encourage customers to stay longer, drink in the experience and hopefully spend a bit more. But how do you deal with someone, who orders a small latte and croissant at 10am, still taking up valuable space two hours later? Ensuring your seating works efficiently is not easy but it can be done, as Cotswold retailer Broadway Deli proves on a daily basis. “It takes a lot of concentration, multi-tasking and keeping the numerous plates you have spinning,” says co-owner Will Doyle, who regularly has to keep a keen eye on 63 covers across the deli’s two floors and rear patio. Customers are engaged on a ‘first come, first serve’ basis, which Doyle says is the easiest and fairest system. “They can’t argue with it and nobody can jump the queue.” Indoor tables are numbered

while outdoor tables are colourcoded, which is novel but also makes it easier for staff to identify which table orders are outside. The team aims to attend to customers immediately, helped by a member of staff positioned at the till, noting down which table numbers/colours have become


occupied and crossing them off once the server has taken their orders. “It’s good to keep an eye on their arrival and speak to customers immediately because it lets them know they’ve been recognised and not left to flounder,” says Doyle. Plates are cleared as soon as a table is finished eating. Although that might seem hasty to some, it keeps the flow of dishes to the kitchen steady. It is also an opportunity to ask diners if they want something else or the final bill. Those customers who prefer to stay long after they’ve finished their meals are few and far between at Broadway Deli but, if it does happen, Doyle is willing to turn a blind eye. “It’s not ideal but you’ve got to take customer experience into account,” he says. “We don’t want bad press. I would rather have someone sit for hours than get annoyed, leave and not come back.”

Prep time:10mins Cook time: 10mins, plus straining Makes: Six servings Six whole peaches or nectarines 2 tsp caster sugar 3 tbsp honey ½ a vanilla pod For the ricotta: Juice of 1 lemon (approx. 2 tbsp), plus 2 strips of the zest 2 tbsp white wine vinegar Pinch of salt 1litre milk

Sean Callitz

• Get to it – make first contact with customers as soon as possible, even if it’s just to acknowledge them • Clean up quick – don’t leave dirty dishes. Collecting them swiftly is efficient and encourages the next stage in the meal • Let them linger – don’t hassle those rare few customers that like to hang around. One bad reaction can have a big impact.

It’s fine to have a system but staffing is just as important for running an efficient service. Doyle and the other co-owners make sure every employee is trained to work in all areas of Broadway Deli, so they are able to jump on a till or serve in the café when things get busy. “From an operational point of view, it is the best way for us as a small business,” says Doyle. “It can be quite fast-paced so it is easier if everyone is equipped to work in different departments.”

Simple recipes to boost your margins. Sponsored by Tracklements Making your own ricotta is easy, but the milk needs to be good quality. Full cream naturally lends itself to a creamier, luscious ricotta. We’ve used it in a sweet dish, but it’s just as good with a glug of olive oil and black pepper on sourdough toast.

Roasted summer stone fruits

HOW THEY SERVE IN BROADWAY: • Have a simple system – ‘first come first serve’ works well and it’s fair

Method: • Mix the lemon juice and the vinegar together. • Heat the milk and salt just short of boiling. Turn off the heat, stir in the salt and vinegar/lemon juice mix. The milk will start to curdle, so give it a good stir to break up the curds every few minutes. Leave to stand,

covered with a cloth, for 30mins. • Pour curds and whey into a muslin cloth, held by a sieve, over a large bowl. Leave to drain until the desired consistency for your ricotta is reached – half an hour for soft, overnight for a firmer texture. • Preheat the grill oven to 200°C. Cut the stone fruit in half. Place on a baking sheet and sprinkle over the sugar. Roast for 15mins until just charred on top. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for a few minutes. Spoon into the peach halves. • Mix together the honey and vanilla and drizzle over the peaches before serving. Recipe by Fine Food Digest

A condiment for every meal

Vol.20 Issue 8 | September 2019


Bergamo will provide the setting for an epic gathering of cheese and cheese people at the fourth edition of our thriving FORME event, during our time as a UNESCO Creative Cities candidate.

As the World Cheese Awards continues to shine a spotlight on small cheesemakers in every corner of the globe, I’m excited to be with the team as it takes its powerful event to Italy.

Francesco Maroni, president of the Progetto FORME, Italy

Cathy Strange, global cheese buyer at Whole Foods Market, USA



WCA at FORME – Thursday 17 to Sunday 20 October 2019, Bergamo, Italy The World Cheese Awards has been at the heart of the global cheese community for over three decades, bringing together cheesemakers, retailers, buyers, consumers and food commentators in a unique celebration of all things cheese. Visiting Italy for the first time in 2019, the competition will be hosted by FORME in Bergamo, joining forces with a bustling consumer cheese festival and the brand new international dairy trade show, B2Cheese.

gff.co.uk/wca | @guildoffinefood #worldcheeseawards

Apple & Beetroot 1 star 2018

Discovery 1 star 2018

Cox & Bramley 1 star 2018

Yellowcoate Raw Cider Vinegar 2 stars 2016 & 2017

Apple & Cinnamon 2 stars 2016

Red Pippin 2 stars 2016

Egremont Russet 2 stars 2015 & 2016

since 1949 our family farm has been growing top quality fruit. Nestled on the southern side of a sandstone ridge in the high weald, the farm has the perfect aspect for fruit growing. One of the few unspoilt medieval landscapes left in England, the high weald is justifiably an area of outstanding natural beauty. With small fields, ridges and valleys many of which are covered by ancient woodlands. In this idyllic setting some of the best fruit in the country is grown and turned into awarding winning juices, raw cider vinegar, jams, chutneys, relishes and pickles. @ringdenfarm @ringdenfarm

Ringden Farm Ltd Flimwell, East Sussex. Tel : 01580 879385 www.ringdenfarm.co.uk sales@ringdenfarm.co.uk

For more information contact Ed Morse on ed@banhoekchillioil.co.uk Vol.20 Issue 8 | September 2019


plastic waste

Introducing the panel Simon Thompson, Retail & hospitality director, Fortnum & Mason

Jennie Allen Founder, Bayley & Sage

John Farrand, Managing director, Guild of Fine Food

Rob Copley Founder, Farmer Copleys Farm Shop and Chairman, Farm Retail Association

Clare Jackson, Founder, Slate

Rebecca Hemsley, Head of foodservice and hospitality operations, Waitrose

Last month, Fine Food Digest assembled a stellar line-up of retailing talent in the board room of Fortnum & Mason. Here’s what happened when representatives from Waitrose, an awardwinning farm shop, a top London deli chain, an up-and-coming cheesemonger and Fortnum’s itself got together to discuss the biggest topics in the business of selling fine food…


RETAIL DISCUSSION The farmer is a very trusted person at the moment. If you look at politicians, nobody trusts them. Rob Copley Farmer Copleys Farm Shop

DISCUSSION POINT: CONSUMER DESIRE FOR PROVENANCE It doesn’t take long for the panel to shift from exchanging their background stories into analysing why fine food retailing has grown in the last two decades. Consumer interest in food and where it comes from has undoubtedly grown – largely through TV chefs and media coverage – and all of the retail formats represented around the table are essentially in the business of meeting this demand. The consensus is that buying from a place like a farm shop, food hall, or deli instantly makes a product more appealing. “It’s that shortening of the supply chain and that trust,” says Fortnum’s Simon Thompson, trying to put his finger on the reason. “You almost want to touch and feel it. People think ‘I want to go to the source’.” He goes on to suggest that proteins, like meat and cheese, are especially important in the fine food offer because consumers are thinking more about them. Rob Copley naturally champions farm shops as ideally placed, because they are often the producer themselves. “The farmer is a very trusted person at the moment,” he says. “If you look at politicians, nobody trusts them. But farmers are almost heroes and people have got a lot of trust that you’re doing the job right.” Slate’s Clare Jackson, who has two specialist cheese shops, agrees about customers wanting retailers to bring them closer to the product. “We find people coming into our shop like to understand which are the local products and those that we buy directly from the cheesemakers themselves. “We try and visit those farmers and cheesemakers and talking about that brings the cheese alive. People really tap into that and they want to know that it’s come from the cheese vat where it’s been made.” John Farrand says he is heartened to hear this point of view. “I find it incredibly interesting that they want you to be that conduit between the maker and them. I bang on about things like that but it’s nice to know that they happen in the real world.” Rebecca Hemsley of Waitrose and Bayley & Sage founder complete a full house on this topic, with both retailers advocating in-store tastings –

provided it is through the producer themselves. “I think customers love the back story,” says Allen, adding that she regularly sends staff on visits to suppliers. One colleague even questioned Allen’s decision to buy a certain brand of olive oil when shopping instore recently because they had visited another one and preferred that. “There’s an incredible loyalty once they’ve stood there and experienced it and they’ve understood the passion that goes into it.” Rebecca Hemsley says Waitrose often sends its butchers to suppliers and there is also a program that allows staff to visit the chain’s own

Leckford Farm near Andover. Despite the enthusiasm around the table, Jennie Allen gives everyone a reality check. “We all talk about provenance but actually ready-meals get larger and larger and no one really cares about the provenance of their chicken in those meals,” she says, adding that Bayley & Sage’s only uses free-range meat. “Sometimes we can delude ourselves about how interested people are in provenance. There’s definitely a large section of the population that aren’t. There’s a huge amount of people that just want convenience.” CONTINUED ON PAGE 33

Vol.20 Issue 8 | September 2019


Vol.20 Issue 8 | September 2019


DISCUSSION POINT: STAFFING AND FOOD RETAIL AS A CAREER Staffing is a topic that keeps cropping up throughout the discussion. “It’s interesting that creating this speciality retail experience does put much more emphasis on the quality of your staff and the team that you have,” says Clare Jackson. “You can’t just have somebody there that is cutting a piece of cheese and wrapping it. It’s all about that speaking and creating a relationship. “It means they have to be well trained, they have to be knowledgeable but also a friendly, enthusiastic, cheerful person so that they can build that relationship.” Given its co-ownership model, you would expect Rebecca Hemsley to extol the virtues of staff but her take on it is unexpectedly “independent”. “Customers come to our counters, I guess, in the same way they’d come to all of your counters, for the person standing there. “They come to talk to the butcher who sells them their beef for their Sunday Roast. They’re not coming for the Waitrose brand.” Although this kind of persona can be trained, Rob Copley laments the decline in people’s natural ability. “I also think communication skills are disappearing. Everybody’s coming out with a

DISCUSSION POINT: RETAILERS SELLING ONLINE There is a range of takes from the panel on selling food online. Both Rob Copley and Jennie Allen are unequivocal that you can’t replicate the experience of walking into a speciality food shop on the internet. “I like to explain to my guys that we’re an antidote to Amazon,” says Allen, adding that she doesn’t have a problem with the site and is a customer herself. “We’re just human beings. What do human beings like? Chatting to other

degree but communication, that’s what’s going to pay in the future, it’s people that can talk to people and get their point across.” To make matters worse, he says skilled staff like butchers and chefs, are getting harder to come by. And the panel nods in agreement. Staff retention is one of the sector’s biggest challenges it seems. Copley tells the room he is very conscious about rewarding staff who have been with his business for several years by upscaling their pay and giving them more of a career path with training. “It’s a cheap cost, isn’t it?” says Allen, who has been introducing staff perks like gym membership and private health care. “Staff turnover is an incredibly expensive cost. I go on about it the whole time. I say: ‘Have you any idea how much it costs to hire someone, train someone, induct them?’ We need to hold to our people.” Thompson says Fortnum & Mason has been actively developing apprenticeships for both current and potential staff. “We’ve got to get people to consider it and got to show them that there is a career there. I think the industry has to.” “I do think it’s more in vogue than it ever has been. And it’s a transferable skill and you go away with fantastic knowledge.”

human beings.” “I will only open stores where we can embed ourselves into the community and chat away. And I think that’s what people are looking for. “You can do beautiful point of sale [online], but there’s nothing like face-to-face” Even if a retailer can make a go of selling online alongside their bricks-and-mortar presence, John Farrand asks the group whether online is just migrating existing customers’ spending from the store to home delivery. Slate’s Clare Jackson has an online model that tries to capitalise on seasonal visitors having gained their trust in store. “We’re in the lucky position that we can have people visit our shops when they’re on holiday in Suffolk and when they go home we can still be their cheesemonger.” While Fortnum & Mason sells its famous branded wicker hampers online, Simon

We’ve got to get people to consider it and got to show them that there is a career there. Simon Thompson, Retail & hospitality director, Fortnum & Mason

Thompson says these are filled with ambient goods and have longer shelf lives which makes them a relatively easy prospect. “High risk foods, milk, cheese, fresh meats,” he says, “they are the challenging products. “We’ve got a Sunday lunch box and a Friday night steak box which we do sell online but we only do that within the M25 because we need to really control that health and safety.” Jackson agrees that selling fresh food via the web is precarious, particularly given the customer expectations set by larger companies that can deliver in an instant. “You get one mistake, one delivery that doesn’t happen, and you’re eating into the margin of the four that went really well the day before. Reputationally, the delivery failure isn’t ours but boy do customers get on the phone or email us and say it’s our fault.” CONTINUED ON PAGE 34

You get one mistake, one delivery that doesn’t happen, and you’re eating into the margin of the four that went really well the day before. Clare Jackson, Slate

Vol.20 Issue 8 | September 2019



If you bring in a bottle that’s contaminated, fill up your milk and you’re ill, that’s got to be a minefield, hasn’t it? John Farrand, Guild of Fine Food

DISCUSSION POINT: TACKLING PLASTIC WASTE Everyone in the room agrees that plastic is a major challenge for all food retail, and every retailer is on the case. Rob Copley says farm shops that haven’t made a move yet can shift quite quickly. He has made all of the “easy” in-store changes, like swapping paper bags in for plastic in the produce section, but then it starts to get more difficult. “We’ve just been looking at carrier bags, but there isn’t an alternative out there,” he says. “The alternative is getting the customers to reuse them. Paper bags take too much space. Biodegradable bags aren’t actually biodegradable.” Jennie Allen points out that even bags for life aren’t the perfect eco solution, either. “The statistic is something like you’ve got to use a cotton bag 171 times for it to become carbon neutral. And no one uses those bags 171 times.” While Allen argues that charging for plastic bags is poor customer service, Copley counters that he has seen a large reduction in usage since introducing the charge in his shop. One thing the pair agrees on, though, is reinforcing the need to re-use bags even though a good deal of customers are still more concerned about convenience. Waitrose is currently trialling its Unpacked format, which strips back as much plastic 34

September 2019 | Vol.20 Issue 8

from the shop floor as possible, at several stores. Rebecca Hemsley says that providing shoppers with a plastic box to sit in the trolley on every trip and hold their shopping has gained some traction – recalling a Sainsbury’s scheme from the early 2000s. The Unpacked trial has also seen the chain introduce lots of refillable points and encourage customers to bring in their own containers. Some of the independents at the table have also started doing this. But John Farrand raises the issue of health and safety. “If you bring in a bottle that’s contaminated, fill up your milk and you’re ill, that’s got to be a minefield, hasn’t it?” Rob Copley says he has been reassured by his insurer that the liability is not with the retailer but Simon Thompson suggests that this question has already got Fortnum’s technical teams “breaking into a sweat”. “Something’s got to be done about it to allow us to unravel the ability to do probably what the common sense thing is and bring [containers] back,” he says, but he does worry about the grey area that a customer complaint might create – even though the contamination was their fault. “It’s no different than somebody buying half a dozen sausages, walking round London for 12 hours and going home and cooking them,” points out Rob Copley. No matter how eco-friendly any retailer is at a consumer-facing level, the supply chain also needs consideration. Thompson says it is retailers’, especially larger ones, responsibility to encourage suppliers along the way. “The great thing is the movement is there. The momentum is there,” says Thompson of the societal change that seems to be driving plastic reduction across businesses.



Need more depth? Want to hear the panel’s view on other topics? If you want to hear more of what our panellists said, then download the latest episode of the Fine Food Podcast for a ringside seat. It’s available for download now on iTunes or via gff.co.uk/category/fine-food-podcast/

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RETAIL DISCUSSION Customers sit there with their croissants, they make the floor dirty, we can’t access the goods. Jennie Allen, Bayley & Sage

DISCUSSION POINT: FOODSERVICE IN RETAIL The three independent retailers at the table surprise FFD by rejecting the notion that retail cannot exist anymore without some kind of foodservice element. While his shop has a café, Rob Copley doesn’t think it’s a deal breaker for retailers. “I think if you’re good at what you do or you’ve got something unique, foodservice is not required,” he says. “It does help footfall, but you don’t need it.” Jennie Allen, who has experimented with seating and café offerings in some of her stores, says she sees adding these elements to retail as detrimental. The minute she could remove it from her Parkgate branch, she did. “Customers sit there with their croissants, they make the floor dirty, we can’t access the goods,” she says. “I think if we’d given a third of the store and done it well, it might not have offended me so much. “Would I ever want a store big enough, where we could do that? Perhaps.” Clare Jackson, whose shops are smaller than most Bayley & Sage premises had a similar experience when she first opened. “We’ve

tried the coffee machine and we found it compromising. Actually it’s very time-consuming to make a cup of coffee. Yes, there might be a great margin on that coffee but it’s taken the staff away from the selling of the cheese so we took it out after six months.” Rob Copley says that anybody with a café area needs to consider “dwell time”. “It doesn’t necessarily mean they’re spending more. It just means they’re spending longer on the premises. If somebody’s going to fill your car park up for two hours you need to be getting the sales.” Fortnum & Mason is geared up to offering a number of eat-in options alongside retail and these do drive footfall and breed frequency in customers. But it only works because “we’re all in”, says Simon Thompson. “You need to measure what you’re putting in, how much skill and is it sustainable against what your business is trying to do,” he says. “I think a lot of business make the mistake of trying to drop in that experiential piece not understanding the undertaking. To do it sustainably and do it well, it’s probably going to hurt them.” Not all Waitrose branches have a café but Rebecca Hemsley is always thinking about adding them. “Our customers ask ‘Where’s the

café?’” she says. “They expect there to be one in Waitrose, so we are keen to make sure that wherever we can put one, we put one. “What we see where we’ve maybe opened a branch or put a café into a branch that’s in relatively short drive proximity from a branch without a café, they will migrate to the one with the café.” Drawing on her time at Pret A Manger, Hemsley says there are a number of criteria you have to meet if you want regular diners in your foodservice element. Chief on the list is a seat, followed by a toilet, wifi and crucially power sockets for charging their electronic devices. Since joining the supermarket chain, she has set about adding sockets to a number of locations. Despite her dislike for providing cafes in her own stores, Jennie Allen concedes there is definitely a convergence between retail and foodservice but it’s success is predicated on having a sufficient amount of space for both.

Our customers ask ‘Where’s the café?’ They expect there to be one in Waitrose”. Rebecca Hemsley, Waitrose

Fine Food Digest would like to thank Fortnum & Mason for hosting this panel discussion. Vol.20 Issue 8 | September 2019



The Garlic Farm

GREAT WIGHT The Isle of Wight celebrates multiple Great Taste Award successes again this year’

“WHAT’S YOUR NAME and where do you come from…?” Branding and provenance were the main questions that Cilla Black would ask of contestants on the Blind Date TV show back in the 80s and 90s. For food producers in 2019, sitting eagerly behind the curtain of the Great Taste Awards, the date is even more blind. Happily the Isle of Wight is producing food and drink of such high quality that the judges, unknowingly, fell in love with the Island again! As well as being farmers and producers, at The Garlic Farm we are also retailers and restauranteurs so blind tasting is something we do on a regular basis. We know from personal experience that Isle of Wight producers have been riding a wave of quality and inventiveness for the past few years. The local offering in our own retail space is entirely more eclectic and exciting than ever before and the ingredients in our restaurant now even includes locally grown quinoa. The Isle of Wight is fast becoming not only a hot-bed of produce and producer brands but also a food-tourism destination. Collaborations between venues and farmers or producers taking the shape of gastronomic weekend tours and food trails are more easily facilitated when you are never more than twenty minutes from field to fork, or distillery to pub! Tipsy Wight – Quince Vodka Liqueur This whole range does well for us in our farm shop, with quirky packaging and clean branding. It’s good for gift-retail but equally popular with locals because of


September 2019 | Vol.20 Issue 8

the flavour and quality. Isle of Wight Distillery – Mermaid Gin This is a hero product. Sales with us and locally have now been eclipsed by the success on the mainland and even further afield. With ethically sourced botanicals, sustainable packaging and a smooth yet complex flavour, this gin is a deserving winner. Worth noting that Mermaid Gin is now available through Cotswold Fayre. Goddards Brewery – Quarr Abbey Ale The Quarr Abbey Ale captures interest with our customers, perhaps partly because it uses Coriander and Sweet gale grown and hand-picked in Quarr Abbey’s own gardens. Briddlesford Farm Dairy – Feta-Style Cheese This Feta Style Cheese is a brined curd cheese with a soft, creamy, white appearance. It is light and crumbly with a beautiful texture. Unlike traditional feta it is made with rich Guernsey milk. This family business supply all our milk, various cheeses for the shop and are a pivotal part of Island produce. Mrs Bucketts Kitchen – Ginger Tablet Paula Buckett, Mrs Bucketts Kitchen has achieved Great Taste Awards over the last four years for Homemade Tablet, all handmade in small batches using local ingredients where possible. Jasper’s Coffee – Chipper Blend Jasper’s is a small micro-roastery providing a range of award-winning specialty grade coffees. Chipper

Espresso Blend uses Nicaraguan and Peruvian beans to produce a coffee oozing citrus and berry notes with good sweetness. The Garlic Farm - Garlic Butter with Parsley, Thyme and Black Pepper A diversified farm can’t survive without a team effort but we just have to mention Lou here. She produced over 18 different subtle variations of this recipe in an effort to perfect the balance of garlic. It’s one of our most popular products. We are very proud to share in the success at the recent awards with our neighbouring food specialists. It’s often the case that quality breeds quality and the cumulative effect of a collective effort to approach food in a considered way is changing the profile of the Island. The stock on our shelves and the plated dishes served at here the farm are tangible examples of a flourishing region. If ‘our Graham’ were to do a quick reminder… he’d guarantee you’d find a love of food and drink of The Isle of Wight.

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Vol.20 Issue 8 | September 2019



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September 2019 | Vol.20 Issue 8

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Celebrating its 20th anniversary, Speciality & Fine Food Fair returns with even more new food brands, seminars and features to give visiting buyers the most up-to-date insight into today’s food retail market. FFD gives you a preview of what to look out for, plus a full exhibitor listing starting on page 45. When it opens its doors at Olympia on 1st-3rd September, Speciality & Fine Food Fair will be 20 years old. This year’s event promises to reveal a wealth of exciting new products and brands from the industry’s artisan producers as well as uncovering key trends shaping the sector. The show will feature the annual Fresh Discovery Awards and Discovery Zone showcasing new innovative suppliers. Visitors can meet mixologists and source new beverages from The Drinks Cabinet area. And, as always, the Savour the Flavour and Food for Thought theatres will again host a number of inspiring workshops and cookery demonstrations. There will be 700 producers on display at the event offering indie retailers a diverse selection of brands to meet and do business with, while picking up on the big and emerging trends influencing the market. As part of the trade show’s anniversary celebrations, SFFF19 recently held a dedicated awards ceremony to celebrate the contributions made by twenty figures within the sector. The ‘20 Icons of the food & drink industry’ featured individuals from across the industry – from campaigners, chefs and educators to producers, retailers and wholesalers. The show itself will be celebrating its 20th anniversary with an interactive picture board. Situated on the ground floor, visitors will be invited to take a polaroid and suggest who they think is set to be the biggest disruptor in the market. By the end of the Fair, the wall will offer an overview of the shape of the market to come. In the last hour of each day, both visitors and exhibitors are invited to raise a glass to 20 years of Speciality & Fine Food Fair with a dedicated Happy Hour showcasing a selection of wines. “For the past two decades Speciality & Fine

Food Fair has provided an invaluable platform for some of the UK’s most pioneering artisan brands,” says Soraya Gadelrab, portfolio director at organiser Fresh Montgomery. “Over the years we’ve watched many of our fledging exhibitors

from the Discovery Zone flourish. Every year brings new trends and innovations – it’s what keeps the show so fresh and makes it absolutely unmissable.” specialityandfinefoodfairs.co.uk

An international affair The political upheaval caused by Brexit has certainly rocked many industries in the UK and the fine food sector is no exception. This has been reflected at the show with some of the European pavilions slightly shrinking this year, but the show has said there will be bigger stands reserved for countries outside of the EU.

The new international pavilions will include fine food offerings from as far as Mexico (in partnership with MexGrocer), and South Korea under Gyeongnam Trading. These will be appearing alongside longstanding European contributors such as France, Italy, and Spain.

Vol.20 Issue 8 | September 2019


SHOW PREVIEW Sample the best of Great Taste 2019 Out of 12,772 products sent in from over 100 different countries, just 3,409 took home 1-stars, 1,326 received 2-stars and 208 were awarded 3-stars in Great Taste 2019. Buyers attending this year’s SFFF can see and source around 3,000 of those winners at the Guild of Fine Food’s Great Taste Deli. Many of the 1- and 2-star winning products will be displayed across the deli shelves on the Gallery upstairs, while retailers eager to see this year’s 3-star winners will find them in glass

cabinets in the entrance and middle aisles of the ground floor. On the Great Taste Deli, retailers can meet some of the producers of these winning products, as well as chat to Guild staff about retail membership, training and other opportunities. The Guild’s training manager Jilly Sitch and industry chef Steve Walpole will be cooking with some of this year’s 1-, 2- and 3-star winners while talking through the robust judging process at the Savour the Flavour theatre. There will also be a chance to meet the Great Taste 2019 Supreme Champion at the theatre on Monday 2nd September at 11am and sample the champion product.

Trendwatch Discover some of the trends to keep an eye on at the show

The sustainability factor

Sustainability is a big issue facing food producers, wholesalers and retailers alike and its presence will definitely be felt at this year’s show. Look out for producers that are making sustainability a part its USP including Two Farmers’ 100% compostable crisp brand (stand 4610) and Nibs (stand 4726), which produces granola from waste fruit and vegetable pulp.

Free-From and ‘Better-for-You’

As the flexitarian movement grows, the number of free-from and vegan food products launching to cater to it is on the rise. At SFFF19, 22% of start-ups exhibiting will be offering free-from and vegan products. Meet OGGS (stand 4536) with its egg- and dairy-free cakes made with aquafaba and The Brook’s (stand 4518) premium vegan frozen food supplier.

Low or no

Must-see seminars

Highlights from SFFF19’s two theatre areas cheese like a pro – 12.45 - 1.10, Monday 2nd September • The Importance of Quality Ingredients Learn all about the taste and smells of highquality ingredients with chef Daniel Britton as he discusses their role in making a dish great – 11.00 - 11.45, Tuesday 3rd September

Food for Thought theatre

Savour the Flavour theatre

• Decreasing Food Waste – How to ComplEAT - With 1/3 of food in the UK going to waste, this session will discuss how retailers can reduce wastage and transform food that otherwise would have gone to waste. There will also be a chance to learn about the companies doing their bit to help the global crisis – 12.00 - 12.45, Sunday 1st September • How to Taste Chocolate like a Pro - Owner of Devoted to Fine Chocolate Hazel Lee is holding a taster session for everything chocolate based – 1.45 - 2.10, Sunday 1st September • Guild of Fine Food Presents: The Academy of Cheese - Join the Guild of Fine Food’s retail guru Jilly Sitch and learn to taste 42

September 2019 | Vol.20 Issue 8

• The ‘Why’ behind Food Trends - Join food futures expert Charles Banks as he explains the social and cultural reasoning behind food trends – 2.00 - 2.45, Sunday 1st September • In Conversation with… Rob Woodall, A Meat-Free Movement - Former Kellogg’s executive and CEO of The Meatless Farm, Rob Woodall discusses the health, welfare and sustainability concerns surrounding eating meat and the increasing demand for plant-based protein – 11.00 - 11.40, Monday 2nd September • People vs. Plastic: What’s Retail’s Role? - Co-founder of A Plastic Planet, Siân Sutherland is hosting a session on the changing demands for plastic packaging and will offer solutions and future proofing plans for retailers – 1.00 - 1.40, Monday 2nd September • Improving sales from the ‘Low & No’ movement - Laura Willoughby, co-founder of Club Soda, will share her recommendations on how to improve sales on low- and no-alcoholic drinks – 1.30 - 2.10, Tuesday 3rd September

The drinks market is feeling a lot lighter recently with beer and cider brands offering low in alcohol alternatives – driven by younger consumers reducing their alcohol intake. Retailers looking to cater to this should check out Small Beer Brew Co.’s low ABV beers (stand 3212). New brand, Redvulette (Stand 4636) will also be sampling its lower ABV Rum Punch.

Ready, set, rum

Is rum set to be the next spirit to follow the gin boom? It looks like it as the number of rum producers has increased fourfold since 2016. Belgrove Hazelnut Rum (stand 3008), a Demerara rum infused with hazelnut, Madagascan vanilla and chocolate, and Sisserou’s rum & coconut cream liqueur (stand 4961) will both be at the show.

Biscuits and booze?

Snacks created to accompany drinks is an emerging category that we’re seeing more of. Examples include Scottish brand The Drinks Bakery (stand 4544) and its range of biscuits to match the flavour profile of beers, gins, malt whiskies and wines. Made For Drink’s (stand 4570) range of products is inspired by drinking cultures from around the world like duck fritons for IPA and patacone chips for golden rum.






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Vol.20 Issue 8 | September 2019


Zaatar & Pine Nut Sauce with Crispy Onions Herby, Nutty, Crispy, Crunchy & Delicious Try it on Stand 3120

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CHRISTMAS 2019: FIASCONARO AND THE “TRADITION” OF SICILIAN PANETTONE A journey across Sicily with the classic Italian Christmas cake: Panettone


avouring a slice of Fiasconaro panettone is like going on an imaginary journey across Sicily. The ingredients are carefully selected amongst the bountiful gifts of the Sicilian land: oranges, pistachios, chocolate from Modica, almonds from Avola and the precious “manna” from Madonie to name a few.

The history of the Fiasconaro family originates in the 1950s in Castelbuono, a small village on the slopes of the Madonie nature reserve, not far from Palermo, and it is here that to this day the three brothers Fausto, Martino and Nicola have chosen to keep their heart and soul to continue this emotional adventure. Nowadays Fiasconaro

has become a world-renowned brand and an undisputed icon of the art of patisserie for its Mediterranean interpretation of the traditional Christmas cake from the north of Italy, the Panettone. Artisan skills and the rigorously slow fermentation process combined with the excellent ingredients are the real stars of this successful story.

UK Distributor: Cibosano Limited | 01992 763076 / 020 8207 5820 | info@cibosano.co.uk FIASCONARO Srl: Phone (+39) 0921677132 | Fax (+39) 0921676800 | fiasconaro@fiasconaro.com


September 2019 | Vol.20 Issue 8





Guild of Fine Food members are highlighted in bold type

35 Foods 888 Organic Exporter Co


1306 4546

Aagrah Foods 1012 Abdullah Enterprises 2334 Ace Tea London 2310 Aceites Finca la Torre 1855 Acetaia Giusti 1340a Acorn Dairy 1123 Acqua Filette 1340b Actual Concept 1130f Adc T/A Saporio 4808 ADRAL S.A-Regional Development Agency of Alentejo 4540 African Equations 2040c AGAPI Private Company 4510 Agence Wallonne Pour L’Exportation 1130 Ahmed Tea 1320d Almazara Molero Maza 1440e Alternative Foods 4536 Altos Del Terral 1530b Andes Superfood 4641 Anthea Organics 1540b Antica Valle d’Ofanto sanferdinandese 1330b Athanasiadis A. Nikolaos 1540c




Bakeverket AS BALCA GIDA TAR.ÜRN.YAĞ Banketbakkerij Van Strien BASE COOKING SCANDINAVIA AB Basket Zdravija Hrana BbyB Bean 2 Bag Beau Farm Artisan cheese Bee Approved Beeble Liquor Limited Beech’S Fine Chocolates Belgrove Hazelnut Rum Belinda Clark Confectionery Ben & Bill’s Best of Hungary Beyond Living Bier Nuts Binary Ale Biscuiterie d’Afa Black Liquorice Company BLI (Thailand) Blue Skies Holdings Bodegas El Lagar De Isilla Bodegas Sierra Body and Mind Botanicals Boer & Siebert Bonta Italia Booja Booja Borough Broth Co Bottlebrush Ferments Brasserie de Brunehaut Brasserie Du Bocq Bread Tree Breva Beverages (Pty) Brew Tea Company Bright Spirits

1853 4216 4220 4718 4550 1030a 3222 3423 3031 3514 2140 3008 3133 2220 812 4532 3000 4806 1730d 5024 4546 3118 1530e 1530a 1903 3321 1120g 1220b 4946 4844 1130g 1130e 2224 2040e 1310 3304

Vol.20 Issue 8 | September 2019


SHOW PREVIEW Brindisa Brindle distillery Bumble Wrap Burntisland fish Co Business France Butter Nut of London By den Weg BYRUBY


3111 5036 4910 3019 1743, 1730, 1743a 4834 2040a 4614

C PEC INTERNATIONAL Cacao Equador, Roça de Sto. António Calnort - Caldos Del Norte Cape Foods Cape Hot House CC t/a Fynbos Fine Foods Capreolous Fine Foods Cardo Sra do Monte Carob World Portugal Casaluker Cerveza Castreña (Carlos Fernández) Chalk Stream Foods Chapon Charbonnel et Walker Chase Distillery Chief Chocolate Officer Choco Group Chocolat Madagascar Chocolates By Eloise Cibosano Limited

3320 4814 1530g 2040b 2040f 1420f 4410 4526 830 1940 2124 1743e 2241 1504 4567o 1537 3728 4734 940

Ciudad De Sansueña 1940 Clarence and Bean 1420g Clearspring 910 Clemen 1440a Cocoba 840 Colcombe House Cider 3314 Confiserie Leopold 1130b Cook Trading 1616 Coopérative Isigny Sainte Mer 1730b Corkers Crisps 1320c Cornish Cheese Company 1420c Cotswold Fayre 1120,12201320, 1310 Cottage Delight 1620 Cracker Drinks Co 4558 Creme d’Or 3324 Crispifarms 3520 Cult Vinegar 4816 Cuzena 4552

DGT snc di E.Fois e A.Zara Digitall Trading Dine In Sauces Diverse Fine Food Divine Chocolate DL-VH DOP Dehesa De Extremadura DOP Queso Ibores Doukidis I. & Sons Co Drink Baotic Drivers Pickles Droitwich Salt DTM Print GmbH

3025 3417 3125 1610, 1605 1638 930d 1440c 1440b 1540j 4824 4706 4608 4049


D.Martavaltzoglou and sons gp Daria’s Best Limited Deerness Distillery Deli Farm Charcuterie Delicioso Delino Deliwraps Dethlefsen & Balk Gmbh Devon Distillery

1540g 4524 4559 1420d 1632 930b 3326 922 3006

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International Food Exhibition, The Fine Cheese & Co Speciality & Fine Food Fair Excel. Stand No N2900, The Fine Cheese & Co (1-3 September) Awarded original Swiss cheese since five generations presented by Affineur Walo von Mühlenen.


September 2019 | Vol.20 Issue 8


F A M I LY E T H O S -


With nearly 300 brands and more than 3,500 products to choose from, and supplying farm shops, delicatessens and garden centres throughout the UK... make us your one stop shop.

Most smoked nuts have flavour added Ours are real - real nuts, real smoke, real taste

Visit cheshiresmokehouse.co.uk for more information Exclusively distributed by Hider Foods. tel: 01482 504333 www.hiderfoods.co.uk

Hickory Smoked Almonds and Cashews

Hickory Smoked Cashews with Black Pepper

Hickory Smoked Almonds

Vol.20 Issue 8 | September 2019


St a S an t ee d SF u nu F s m F’ be 19 r1 90 3.


ced u d o r ly p , England d ou erset r P om S n

Balance the Body, Calm the Mind Body and Mind Botanicals produce cannabis tea with a difference. As the only European company who harvest their unique strain of plant, the tea has a beautiful fresh flavour, packed full of CBD goodness. They are hands on with every stage of production from seed selection to producing and packing organic tea for over 350 stockists across the UK, guaranteeing quality and support. The tea is available in loose leaf and individually bagged, which now comes in peppermint flavour. Please use discount code SFFF19 to receive 10% off AWARDS

GOLD 2019

W: keenscheddar.co.uk T: 01963 32286


Bumble Wrap is a washable, breathable fabric which keeps food fresher for longer and can be reused over and over again. It can wrap your sandwiches, a loaf of bread or a piece of cheese. Cover a bowl of leftovers to save for another day. Simply by using the warmth from your hands you can mold the Bumble Wrap over a bowl or round a sandwich. When you have used it wash it and re-use again and again.

bumblewrapyork 48

September 2019 | Vol.20 Issue 8




E Eco Tendance Elizabeth Shaw Empire Bespoke Foods English Heritage English Tea Shop Euromid Levante Extra Virgin - Martín De Prado


5038 1222 1230 4038 1250 1441c 1440j

1200 5028 4638 818 4963


Gaia Brands 3513 Gallybird 4600 Gasm Drinks 3205 Gazelle Dates 4632 Gelatorino 1902 Geurts 1130a GFT Retail (UK) 1305 Ghorban Delikatessen Manufaktur 820 Gimber 1030b Global Brands 2138 Go Faster Food 4602 Godminster 1420e Good Game 4710 Gospodarstwo Pasieczne,, Sadecki Bartnik 2026 Gourmet Lifestyle 1440f Great British Porridge Co 4564 Great Taste Deli 4109 Great Trade Exhibitions & Exports – Consulting Private Company 1540, 1642 Grecious 4527 Guild of Fine Food 4305 Guilt Free Treats 1800

Fin at th and Com e e s e sta Food Spec ee u nd F ial s nu air ity mb Lon an er do d 45 n a 59 t

Fabric 4318 Far Side Coffee 4920 Fentimans 1733 Feudo San Lorenzo 5025 FIAB 1530, 1441, 1440 Fine Food Holdings 1220g Finlay’s Farm Ltd 2010b Fisan (Florencio Sanchez E Hijos S.L.) 1940 Fisselier 2005 Flamigni 1330a Flanders Investment & Trade 930, 1030 Flor De Burgos 1530h Flor De Madre 4604 Flora Tea Group 3425 Florapharm Pflanzliche Naturprodukte GmbH 1750 Fondo Forestal Iberico 2032 Food Partners Co 1140b

Fresh Eric’S Cake Co From Dorset With Love Fromages Spielhofer Fudge Kitchen Fula Flavour LLP


New to the show in… …CHOCOLATE Tony’s Chocolonely Tony’s Chocolonely will be spreading awareness about its ethical chocolate product on stand 1840a. The company’s mission is to eliminate the slave trade involved in the cocoa industry. The brand has two ranges of chocolate bars, a small range (50g) featuring milk chocolate, milk caramel sea salt, dark almond sea salt, and milk hazelnut and bigger bars (180g) in the same flavours, as well as milk chocolate honey nougat, dark milk pretzel toffee, and extra dark chocolate. tonyschocolonely.com

Organic, Vegan and Gluten Free


Visit us on

e at Meline’s strive to produce the best quality, freshness and flavour possible in our sauces. All our produce is gluten free and vegan made by hand in small artisan batches, using the finest organic ingredients. Chinese sauce: A new recipe developed by chef Thomas Middleton from traditional Chinese cuisine, drawing on his three starred Michelin experience as a chef. Chilli Sauce: Based on an old Sichuan recipe, more of a classical Chinese sauce, with a stronger chilli flavour.

stand 4313 at London S&FFF


tel: 07378308518

email: sauce@melines.co.uk


Vol.20 Issue 8 | September 2019


SHOW PREVIEW Guittard Chocolate Company Gyeongnam Trading Inc.


4529 2330

Hannah’s Pantry Hardy Harris & James Chocolate Harrogate Tipple Hawkhead Whisky Smoked Hawkshead Relish Company HB Ingredients Healthy Food Brands Hi Honey Hider Food Imports Hiver Beer HMS Spirits Company Honeyrose Bakery Hoogly Tea Huffkins Hullabaloos Hydropac

4742 5018 4951 1024 4738 1900 4529 4562 5011 1011 1120e 4700 1232 816 1110 4606 1304

Ian Macleod Distillers Ibéricos Gillén Ibericos Revisan Il Gelato di Ariela (A & F Gelati Italian)

3127 1940 1441a 4110


Inkreadible Labels Inolivia - Chrysopoulou Zoe INSTITUTO PARA LA COMPETITIVIDAD EMPRESARIAL DE CASTILLA Y LEÓN INTERGATE – International Business InViaEmilia Iscal Sugar Caramel Isle of Wight Distillery


1307 4945 1320f 3516 1210 5031 4922 4548 1810

Karkam Group Kerridge Commercial Systems Kimchi With Everything Kim’s Chocolates Kineta Drinks KJS Lotus Foods & Co

1743b 2332 5040 930a 4746 4317



20% off at the show A range of 6 award winning regional curry sauces (250g Retail Packs Serve 2) Now you can also easily add curry to the menu with our 1kg bags, great for Garden Centres & Cafes

www.holycowsauces.com, tel: 020 3752 2881 September 2019 | Vol.20 Issue 8

1940 2148 4530 1130c 1220d

James White Drinks Jeffrey’s Tonic JEKL Limited Jelley Distilleries Joe & Seph’s Gourmet Popcorn Joey Koala Joypots Just A Splash Just Gourmet Foods

Come and try our new vegan flavours!


3528 4528

New to the show in... …BISCUITS Olina’s Bakehouse Australian brand Olina’s Bakehouse will be showcasing its range of crackers at this year’s Speciality & Fine Food Fair. The company produces two savoury varieties of crackers: wafer and double-baked seeded crisps. The wafer crackers are thin and lightly textured and come in four flavours, natural, cracked pepper, sesame and poppy seed, while the doublebaked seeded crisps are made with real fruit in flavours of cranberry & pumpkin seed, cashew & rosemary, and fig & almond. The products are available via Cotswold Fayre.

Lakeland Artisan, multi award winning hand crafted, Liqueurs, Tradition Soft Drinks, Fruit Syrups, Preserves and Relishes Winners of 9 Great taste awards in 2019:-

Mediterranean Deli Pr oducts LOVELY FEEDBACK AND COMMENTS FROM VISITORS AT THE FINE FOOD SHOW NORTH “These olives have changed my opinion of olives! I absolutely love them and so do all that try them.”

“This is THE BEST Extra Virgin Olive Oil I have ever tried! I should know I’ve been in the trade for years.”

Herbaceous Strawberry and Gin Liqueur Sloe Gin Liqueur Damson Gin Liqueur Ginger Sarsaparilla Dandelion and Burdock Orange Marmalade with Ginger Damson Extra Jam Sticky Toffee Sauce

Mrs N. Quirk Pitted Greek Olives with Mediterranean Herbs & Garlic or Medium Spiced Chilli & Garlic

Ayshea Hawthorn Beyond The Kale, Bath PDO Kolymvari, Crete



Visit Us On Stand 810 at Speciality Fine Food Fair





T. 01539 822326


E. sales@lakelandartisan.co.uk

Unit 1-2, Staveley Mill Yard, Staveley, Nr Kendal Cumbria. LA8 9LR


info@meddelifood.co.uk | www.meddelifood.co.uk


SEGGIANO real food from italy

integrity • provenance • quality Over 150 best in category products from over 35 of Italy’s greatest artisan producers, including our own production Single Estate Certified Organic Lunaio evoo. Come see what all the fuss is about at Olympia Speciality Food Show - 1/2/3 Sept Stand #2036 Vol.20 Issue 8 | September 2019


st a an C Fi nd d s om ne 81 e e Fo 2 a e u od t S s o Fa pe n ir cia 20 lit 19 y

Raydale Preserves

All our products are handmade in the Yorkshire Dales.

e bio-live & Greek styl ee yogurts lactose fr

ity with char Partnering help give homeless to UK Depaul future le a better young peop

Celebratin g 70 years as A family business founded in London

The London Collection 01494 541890 SALES@TIMSDAIRY.CO.UK 52

September 2019 | Vol.20 Issue 8



A retailers’ guide to the best Christmas ever…

Simply add some Spanish finesse WITH THE FESTIVE season just around the corner, it’s never too early to start planning and Brindisa has devised five Christmas retail commandments to keep tills chiming throughout December. Influenced by founder and owner Monika Linton’s early years on Spain’s Eastern coast, Brindisa is a celebration of the varied cultures, landscapes and above all, the exceptional foods of Spain. The business has been sourcing and supplying high quality Spanish products to delis, food halls and restaurants for over 30 years. With shops in London’s Borough Market and Balham, cheese caves in their wholesale warehouse and five restaurants, Brindisa know what works for British consumers and how to maximise sales – especially in the busy run up to Christmas. Merchandising for Maximum Impact Brindisa’s biggest seasonal sellers are ham carving kits, which with an entry level price of £165 are a significant investment. In-store ham carving creates a real focus point which draws people in – it’s something that has a significant impact on sales. Shop Manager, Fiona Kinnear explains; “No matter how busy the store is, it’s vital to offer consumers the chance to try before they buy – it is a strategy that truly works. Tastings are an essential part of our service as they really encourage customers to purchase.” Clever merchandising should arrest consumers’ attention. Place your best sellers in the heart of your festive displays. Introduce signage that points to gifting recipients, special offers or awardwinning products. For example, we’ve just created special signage for our Brindisa 1605 Manchego Wedge and Cecinas Pablo Cecina Cured Beef, as both products received 3-stars in this year’s Great Taste Awards.

Make the Most of Marketing “Today’s consumers are looking for an experience, not just products. Dedicated Christmas shopping nights, with entertainment such as cheese and wine pairing, can be a great way to engage customers with the products.” explains Brindisa’s Marketing Manager, Harriet Stanford. “Create a buzz on social channels about what you’re doing in-store, and run giveaways to entice customers.”

Know and love the products you’re selling this Christmas. Level Headed Logistics Start planning early and aim for regular deliveries to keep shelves replenished throughout the seasonal madness. With a distribution network throughout the UK, Brindisa can help ensure you have enough stock! Perfect Products for Gifting & Entertaining Perhaps the most important advice is to be sure to select the right range for your customers, taking into consideration the two key purchasing occasions– gifting and entertaining. Highlights include confectionery, which is great for impulse purchases, as well as a range of hampers which are an absolute festive favourite. When it comes to food, quality is everything. Charcuterie boards and premium snacks are essential party foods which Brindisa’s range certainly caters for, with a comprehensive selection of festive favourites

that look great on shelf and taste exceptional. These include: • Señorío bellota, 100% Ibérico ham DOP; exceptional ham made from black pigs fattened on acorns. • Pastura with truffles; enjoy an elegant balance of flavour between delicately sweet ewe’s milk and earthy truffle. • Perelló Gordal olives; large, sweet, juicy olives marinated with guindilla chillies, giving them a subtle touch of heat. • Brindisa salted Marcona almonds; these are the highest grade and are naturally oil-rich, creamy and luxurious. • Rabitos Royale; delicious Calabacita figs coated in rich dark chocolate and filled with brandy ganache. Rupert Linton’s Christmas Cheeseboard Selection Rupert heads up Brindisa’s cheese team and overseas the selection of the 60+ Spanish cheeses in the range. Here are his top picks for Christmas: • Monte Enebro, a very special goats´milk cheese • Artisan Mahón, cows´ milk with 4 month cure • Valdeón Picos de Europa blue cheese • Villarejo Manchego Cured, a raw ewes’ milk cheese • Payoyo, a semi-hard cheese made from indigenous Payoya sheep’s milk Rupert suggests; “Don’t overlook accompaniments – they are a fantastic way to upsell and add variety to your counter display. I recommend stocking a classic Membrillo and Moscatel Grapes – sensational!” See for Yourself To find out more about Brindisa’s Christmas offering visit Stand 3111 at this year’s Speciality & Fine Food Fair. Meet the team and discover their new product range.

www.brindisa.com Order via

sales@brindisa.com or 0208 772 1600

Vol.20 Issue 8 | September 2019



By upholding the integrity of conscience and to give back to the community concept, we ensure 100% native Taiwanese tea to every true taster and discerning palate in the world with no chemical residues or mixed tea with poor quality. Each product is unique and selected with perfect soil and climate conditions, so it is limited. From shan-lin-shih high altitude. Lighted roasting for mild top notes and sweet base as the charming melodies by churping spring cuckoos.

contact@teachamp.com | www.teachamp.com 153-10 Yanji Street, Daan District, Taipei City +886 27729977

• • • •

Our packaging is; Microwavable One material (PP) 100% recyclable ‘Widely Recycled’ by Local Authorities

Old Winchester back in stock! A very hard 18 month farmhouse cheese which has a distinct nuttiness in flavour and made with vegetarian rennet.

www.lyburncheese.co.uk 01794 399982

Sarah Gray’s is a husband and wife team who make jams, marmalades, curds, and chutneys, they have as much fun making their range as they do eating them with their family.

A unique range of plastic food packaging Tamper evident and film seal ranges available. 25ml to 5000ml size range in round, square, oval and rectangle Available from stock in transparent PP Reliable lead times and service - sensible minimum order size Visit www.innavisions.com or call us for a brochure TEL: 01886 832283 54

September 2019 | Vol.20 Issue 8

EMAIL: nick.wild@innavisions.com

01241 860221 | sarah@sarahgrays.co.uk | www.sarahgrays.co.uk

SHOW PREVIEW LillyPuds Lish Foods Limited Lixir Tonic Lomito London Chocolate Lottie Shaw’s Seriously Good Range Lotus Labels Love Leaf Tea Luke Evans Bakery Lumeega Luscombe Drinks Lymn Bank Farm Cheese Co

M L L & L LA Brewery La Credenza La Española La Tua Pasta label.co.uk L’ailOlive Lakeland Artisan LanaRoc Healthy Bites Lauden Chocolate Les Gourmandises des Français Liberty Industries Ventures Life Plus Style Gourmet

1220c 3027 1441b 1100 3225 1108 810 3422 3415 1730a 3009 4634

Made For Drink Maison Georges Larnicol Malt Coast Mamma Flora Manchester Gin Mangajo Drinks Company Marshall & Brown Marulin Masons Yorkshire Gin Matthew Algie & Co Maxim’S De Paris Sapp Mayag Brands Meatsnacks Group Meka Meline’s

2210e 4836 4702 4810 4728 1026 4644 4912 4736 4531 1432 4309

4570 1743c 3402 4708 1331 1224 3413 5022 1028 2214 2000 4572 4561 3217 4313

New to the show in… …TEA Tea Shirt Tailored Refreshments Set up in 2016, Tea Shirt Tailored Refreshments produces a range of traditional and new flavoured blends. This year is the first time the business is exhibiting at SFFF where it will be showcasing and offering tastings of its new Chinese Hibiscus flowers herbal tea. Caffeinefree, the attractive scarlet-coloured brew has notes of fruits and sweet flowers which contrasts with the “tart and astringent undertones”. tea-shirt.co.uk

COLLECTOR’S EDITION Introducing our exciting new all butter shortbread foodservice packs

T: 01466 792086 deans.co.uk sales@deans.co.uk Vol.20 Issue 8 | September 2019




From award winning White Heron Drinks our new FRAMBOISE product is available from mid-September. Please contact us for further info.


#DARINGTOBEDIFFERENT 01544 340241 www.whiteherondrinks.co.uk

Hand Bottled, Hand batched Not available in supermarkets!

XANDER’S BRINGS YOU PLANT BASED PIES Award-winning Pie Manufacturer from Yorkshire. We pride ourselves on making the highest quality pies from locally sourced ingredients. As a family run business we realised that we wanted to be able to cater for all members of the family and so to do this we’re launching a new plant based range so that everyone can experience our award winning pies. One of our Director’s and son of Tom the business owner is a long time vegan and he’s passionately curated this plant based range to create a great tasting fusion between the classic style pie we know and love and interesting new flavours all using ethically sourced ingredients. Call or Email us to enquire about ordering or becoming a stockist: 01924 262132 enquiries@ericrichmond.co.uk


September 2019 | Vol.20 Issue 8

For more information on stocking our range contact us on orders@ginbothy.co.uk


Naturally Reared, Native Breeds, Quality Meat

Dark Woods Coffee is a Yorkshire based coffee roaster, providing the very best retail and wholesale coffee to the independent trade, with equipment and hands-on barista training support.

We are a Devon family farm, producing high quality Dexter x Devon beef, Gloucester Old Spot pork and Lleyn lamb/hogget, in a high welfare and sustainable manner. Our meat has now won over 80 awards, including 19 “Great Taste Awards” and this year we were honoured that our Lleyn hogget legs featured as the main course at the Great Taste 3-Star Dinner.

Leg of Lleyn Hogget

Dexter x Devon Rump Steak

www.lovatonfarmmeat.co.uk 01647231649 lovatonfarm@btconnect.com

Image. Crow Tree

Panama La Huella (Cafe de Panama)

HOLME MILLS . WEST SLAITHWAITE ROAD MARSDEN . WEST YORKSHIRE . UK . HD7 6LS info@darkwoods.co.uk tel . +44 (0)1484 843141


Producing GTA winning coffees 2009 - 2019. Maximise your sales with a top performing coffee brand. To become a stockist call us +353 1 460 8048 or email us orders@fixxcoffee.com RETAIL COFFEE | WHOLESALE COFFEE #fixxcoffee | fixxcoffee.com

Vol.20 Issue 8 | September 2019


Multi-Award-Winning Free Range Eggs Ethically Produced Husband and wife team from County Fermanagh in Northern Ireland, producing free range eggs since 2002 and launched the Cavanagh brand in 2012 to satisfy consumer demand for a quality artisan free range egg ethically produced. We grade and pack multi-award-winning free range eggs from 70,000 birds in 7 flocks across 4 separate sites. Our flocks and Packing Centre are all British Lion Accredited and are rotated to ensure a constant supply of the various sizes all year round for foodservice and retail. Awards include Great Taste, Blas na hEireann, Irish Quality Food Awards, Family Business of the Year 2018, Poultry Farmer of the Year 2017 and 2018, Delicious Produce Award Winner 2018 and Made in Northern Ireland Food and Drink Producer of the Year 2018.



An invaluable opportunity for anyone who is interested in our planet and oceans, preserving real food and achieving mastery of fish and fire from one of the world’s most acclaimed and respected artisans of cured fish, Sally Barnes. Half day day courses courses and and tasting tasting days days are are also also aavailable. Half vailable. BOOKING ESSENTIAL : sally@woodcocksmokery.com 00 353 28 36 232 @woodcocksmokery

Visit our NEW website today www.woodcocksmokery.com

For enquiries email eileen@cavanagheggs.com www.awardwinningeggs.com


Yorkshire’s Cheddar We’ve taken all our cheese expertise and crafted an exceptional Cheddar with proper strength and character. Handcrafted at The Wensleydale Creamery, using Yorkshire milk, and typically aged 15 months.

Stock up today!

Award winni ‘Supr ng! eme

Great Champio York n Ch & Dai shire Chee eese’ Silverry Show se Intern Award Chees ational e Aw 2018 ards

www.wensleydale.co.uk @WdaleCreamery


September 2019 | Vol.20 Issue 8


T: 01969 667664 E: creamery@wensleydale.co.uk @wensleydale_creamery



SHOW PREVIEW Mellifera MexGrocer Michel et Augustin Mill & Mortar Mister Free’d MOMO Kombucha Mr T.G Pullin’s Bakery Myatt’s Fields Cocktails Mykes Gourmet


4525 4036 1730g 1438 4563 4955 4112 3410 1940

Natur Inov Necton - Companhia Portuguesa de Culturas Marinhas New Alliance (Edinburgh) New English Teas New Wave Foods New York Delhi Nibs etc NoJo London Norty Not Gin NovelTea Novo Farina


Offset Print & Packaging Old Rectory Preserves

1146 5029 3403 2122 4542 814 4726 5034 5020 4732 4900 4414

1150 2110H

Ooh La La Confectionery Original Biscuit Bakers Orkney Gin Company O-Teas Limited Otter Vale

4802 1220e 3010 3121 4102


Pabet AB Packaging Mode Papathanasiou Parmuto PATISSERIE LADUREE Peanut Chutney Pearl & Lazy Pekoetea Pellas Nature P.Co. Pennington’s Spirits & Liqueurs PERA GOODS Perchè ci credo di De Lorenzo Enrico & C. Peregrine Trading Limited Phicrobe Pieminister Pimentón De La Vera Pinkster gin Pipers Crisps Playin Choc Poltergeist JE Pomar Viñedos Popcorn Shed

4902 1109 1642 5030 1730e 4522 4730 1910e 4628 3210 4216 4949 2036 1130h 2030 1440d 3409 4107 4826 3411 1530c 3023

New to the show in… …BREAKFAST CEREALS Rude Health Rude Health is a pretty well-established brand but this is the first time the company will be showcasing its range at SFFF. Since it first began producing its muesli, the business has expanded into other breakfast cereals, snacks, flours and dairy-free mylks. Products retailers can find at the show include its Ultimate Organic Granola, Almond Drink, and Oat & Spelt crackers. The company has used naturally-sourced ingredients in its products since its inception in 2005. rudehealth.com

THE FINEST BAKING FROM THE ISLE OF LEWIS Stag Bakeries specialises in producing the finest savoury baked goods. All our Water Biscuits, Oatcakes, Cheese Straws and more are made in the Outer Hebrides by a team of skilled craft bakers using traditional recipes and time-honoured methods. The result is an award-winning range that is unmatched for flavour and quality.

Come and visit us on stand 1910a at SFFF 2019


Deli Farm Charcuterie Delabole, Cornwall PL33 9BZ 01840 214106 www.delifarmcharcuterie.co.uk dfc@delifarmcharcuterie.co.uk

Tel: 01851 702733 sales@stagbakeries.co.uk www.stagbakeries.co.uk Vol.20 Issue 8 | September 2019



Kokoh Chocolate Handmade in the Surrey Hills

Award winning, British crafted, Artisan chocolate bars, made using the finest ingredients. A sensational taste experience.

www.kokohchocolate.com kokohchocolate@gmail.com Tel: 01483 275196

Brigston’s handmade, craft smoked hot dogs are deliciously different. Made from the best quality Farm Assured British beef flank and pork shoulder ground to the perfect texture with a secret blend of ten herbs and spices then gently smoked with beechwood for an exceptional flavour. Pack size: 4 x 100g chilled. For sales information please contact claire@brigston.co.uk or call 07801526107


September 2019 | Vol.20 Issue 8

SHOW PREVIEW Positive Kitchen Premcrest Prestat Pri’s Puddings Proper Nutty Prowexx Psaltiras Pure Italy Puremaplers

5012 2318 1320h 4704 4557 3025 2210 4103 4210


Quello Quesos Sanabria

4918 3322


Radikal Wines Radnor Hills Rafteli Protouli Maria & Co Rana’s Bakery Raven Spirits Raydale Preserves Red Pepper Food Company Redvulette Region of Central Macedonia Rococo Chocolates Rohan Foods Rose Ash Foods Rosebud Preserves

1530d 2131 1540h 4820 1920a 1109 4105 4636 1540a 4113 822 4822 824, 826

Roy Chocolate. Royal Netherlands Embassy Rubis Chocolate Wine & V Gallery Vodka Rude Health


Sage8 Foods Sainte Lucie Saintly Foods Salento (UK) Salt Odyssey Sankofa Snacks Santa Gadea Santa Rosalia Gourmet SC FUENTE DE LA SALUD VASMAR Scandi Kitchen Scotland Food & Drink Screaming Chimp Chilli Sauce Seachips Sead Foods Seedlip Drinks SESAME KINGDOM Shepherds Purse Cheeses Shipton Mill Shortbread House Of Edinburgh Single Variety Co. Sipsmith Sisserou Skinny Kitchen

3424 1840j 3021 1410

4640 1730c 4904 2128 1540e 4513 1530j 1530f 4622 1220j 1910b 4720 4556 4840 3128 5021 1006 3408 1910d 4938 1220f 4961 4744

New to the show in… …SOFT DRINKS MOMO Kombucha MOMO Kombucha will be presenting its range of carbonated fermented tea at SFFF this year. Retailers can find its three-strong range of flavoured drinks served in glass bottles at stand 4955 which the producer says maintains quality and prevents plastic waste. The flavours include ginger-lemon, turmeric, and tropical. All contain beneficial bacteria, vitamins and healthy acids. momo-kombucha.com

Organic Indulgence from the Hebrides www.islandbakery.co.uk

Vol.20 Issue 8 | September 2019



A Seasoning Renaissance



MULTI-AWARD WINNING EXQUISITE SEASONING PRODUCTS FROM KAMPOT CAMBODIA Contact us for our wholesale pricelist Tel: 01738 248288 Email: sales@botreefarm.co.uk www.botreefarm.co.uk

Brownie in a Jar

Our award winning baking kits are produced in Cumbria using only the finest ingredients and all of our packaging is eco friendly. For baking kits and baking subscriptions visit: www.ifiknewyouwerecoming.co.uk Katie@ifiknewyouwerecoming.co.uk 62

September 2019 | Vol.20 Issue 8

SHOW PREVIEW Sleep Well Slightly Different Foods Small & Wild Small Beer Brew Soc. Agr. Borgo Libero SS SORSO South Press Co SoYoo Chips Speciality Food Magazine Speciality Food Traders Spirit of Harrogate St Andrews Farmhouse Cheese Company St Ewe Eggs St Peter’s Brewery Stag Bakeries Stateside Treat Emporium Strathearn Cider / Scruffy Dog Cider Stringer Flavour Sublime Flavoured Butter Sud Biscuits (Maison Bruyère) Suki Teahouse Sulcisdrone4.0 Sulzbacher Supernature


Tadinka Nougat Taeyoung Food TAHI

4560 5042 4957 3212 4724 4800 4624 5002 1400 1404 3515 1920e 1420a 1120b 1910a 2132 4959 3318 4947 1730f 3316 3025 930e 4914

5026 3122 3228

Taste Africa foods 2040d Taste of the West 1420 Tea Shirt 4953 teapigs 3529 Terra Rossa Jordan 3120 Terramoka 1743d The Artisan Bakery 3218 The Artisan Food Club 3224 The Artisan Olive Oil Company 4416 The Belgian Connection 1130j The Brook 4518 The Burger Paste Company 3526 The Chiltern Mix 3427 The Chocolate Society 1406 The Chocolate Tree 3130 The Collaborators 4944, 4946, 4846, 4844, 4842, 4840, 4846 The Cress Company 1850 The Cumbrian Sausage 1802 The Datery 4722 The Drinks Bakery 4544 The Fine Cheese Co. 1520 The Fine Truffle 1539 The Garlic Farm 1120j The Gourmet Chocolate Pizza Co. 3327 The Hidgate 2980 The Holy Cow! Food Company 1120a The Lost Tea Company 4566 The Manhattan Group 4818 THE ORIGINAL DRINKS & FOOD COMPANY 2820

New to the show in… …SNACKS Shore, The Scottish Seaweed Co. Scottish sustainable seaweed snack producers Shore will be appearing at the show on stand 4542. The company uses various species of seaweed to make its four flavoured crisp varieties – sea salt & balsamic; lime, chilli & coconut; sweet & smoky; and Thai chilli. The snacks are said to be gluten-free, high in fibre, and contain potassium, iron and magnesium which all relieve fatigue. Each bag is 22.5g and contains less than 100 calories. shoreseaweed.com


GO Kombucha goes mainstream! With 4 Great Taste awards now under our belt we’re launching our major rebranding - tailored specifically with the fine food sector in mind - at S&FFF19 Stand 3511; looking for a sector distributor; and giving away free samples of the pre-eminent UK kombucha tea brand (since 2003) to all interested traders. If you’re not attending this year, email info@gokombucha for a PDF of our brochure detailing our USPs or call Gary on 07956 228141.

Delicious Dairy Ice-Cream made with our own cows milk from our Pembrokeshire farm. A wide range of flavours available for retail and catering. www.pembrokeshire-icecream.co.uk

@farmicecream Vol.20 Issue 8 | September 2019


Winner of 21 awards at Great Taste

Choi Time, Award Winning Chinese speciality teas that unfurl and blossom in your cup. Hailed as “the Dom Perignon of the tea world� by the Sunday Times Style Magazine.

Phone: 0845 0533269 Email: wholesale@choitime.com Visit: www.choitime.co.uk


Specialists in producing imaginative Great Taste winners, using only natural ingredients to create tantalising flavours for the modern kitchen.


September 2019 | Vol.20 Issue 8

SHOW PREVIEW The Painted Peacock The Passionate Company Europe BV The Pished Fish The Really Brilliant Gin Company The Red Beetle Travelling Food THE RED POT LONDON The Scottish Salmon Company The Spice Sultan The Urban Fermentery The Vegetarian Society The Wasabi Company Thomson & Scott Tom’s Teas Tony’s Chocolonely UK Tracklement’s Speciality Condiments Trespaldum TwentyFour Solar Two Farmers


4712 4618 4906 1120f 4812 5013, 4612 1920c 3331 4319 4630 4118 1320g 4838 1840a 1739 3025 5014 4610

UAB Ziezmariu geles Freskofiorito 1650 Universal Marketing 1330, 1830, 1938, 1740, 1930, 1340 Urban Cordial 4939


Valsana Vamvalis Foods

920 1540d

Vegan Rob’s Venison (Deer Farmers Group) Vermeiren Princeps Verso Creative Vianoleo Vinegar Shed Viva Cuba Foods


3429 1940 1030c 4101 1440h 4944 4916

Wagyu Ibérico 1440g Walkers Shortbread 1920f Water Works 4553 Watmuff & Beckett 1220a Welsh Government 1710, 2993, 1720, 1820 Wesgro 2040 Whip Marshmallows 5027 Whitakers Chocolates 918 Wicked and Wonderful Chocolatier 5004 Wild and Game 4565p Willy’s ACV 1510 Wilson Family Teas 4748 Woodlands Dairy 4520 Woodlands Food Services 4832 World of Zing 1220k Wrexham lager 3209

Yorkshire Dama Cheese Yunay Trade & Exports


Zainofood Zeina Zepice Zingibear Zooteek

1129 5016

4533 1120h 5023 4842 3329

All listings correct at time of going to press


Yanni’s Olive Grove


Delicious Teas, Tea Blends, Herbal Infusions & Matcha

Vol.20 Issue 8 | September 2019


handcrafted PREMIUM / FULL JUICE unfiltered Multi-award-winning available: Bottles, on tap & bib’s

drink better

explore our craft ciders - www.perryscider.co.uk

Apple Cider Vinegar One of nature’s gifts made from the humble apple Our award winning apple cider vinegar is a pure, unfiltered, unpasturised vinegar containing “The Mother”, naturally loaded with HEALTHY ENZYMES AND PROBOTICS, produced from our home grown apples. Available in 500ml bottles and 10L, 200L or 1000L containers. An amazing health tonic for both humans and animals. Pa t M c Ke eve r - 07876 6 8 4 9 9 2 Ca t h e r i n e M c Ke eve r - 07876 6 8 4 9 93 Pe t e r M c Ke eve r - 075 4 3 4 4 4 8 6 6 w w w . l o n g m e a d owc i d e r . co m 66

September 2019 | Vol.20 Issue 8

lunch half page vert.qxp_OPENS THIS MONTH 07/08/2019 12:18 Page 1


Continental Continental Meat Meat Technology Technology

“We offer sophisticated oil-based marinades from BECK Spices of Germany. BECK uses only high-quality ingredients to create marinades that add value and taste to pork, beef and poultry.

Our range spans from the traditional to the adventurous, with flavours such as Bavarian Marinade with Malt Whiskey and Lemongrass Thai Marinade sure to appeal. Beck-Marinades are free from MSG and only use a minimum of declarable ingredients.” For more information please contact:

Continental Meat Technology 31 Salford Road, Aspley Guise, Milton Keynes MK17 8HT T: 01908 584489 email: juergenmaurer@c-m-t.demon.co.uk www.continentalmeattechnology.co.uk


lunch! is a must attend

for anyone in the sector looking for the latest innovations in food-to-go.”


OPENS THIS MONTH Book your free trade ticket at www.lunchshow.co.uk | Quote LU74


Vol.20 Issue 8 | September 2019


MAKERS OF BELFAST’S ORIGINAL HOT SAUCES Blackfire produce a full range of premium hot sauces from mild to the hottest sauce in Ireland using local ingredients from hedgerow to seashore. You will find Dulse, Wild Garlic, Rose Petals and more in our original recipes all of which contain no gluten, allergens, added sugar or salt and they are vegan friendly too. Wholesale and retail enquiries welcome.

Award winning coffee’s from Artisan coffee roasters White Rose Coffee Roasters, based in Halifax, West Yorkshire. We can fulfil your orders big or small roasted on our Toper coffee roaster. www.whiterosecoffeeroasters.co.uk | 01422 347734

Smoked Trout Fillet

Free Range Dry Cured Bacon

Smoked Mussels in Oil

Sussex Cooked Ham

Multiple Award-winner

Sliced Smoked Venison

Traditionally smoked fish, meats and cheeses created with passion, pride and care. For our wholesale price list contact Andrew Tel: 01580 879601 Email: info@wealdsmokery.co.uk wealdsmokery.co.uk Search Weald Smokery


September 2019 | Vol.20 Issue 8



email tim@blackfirefood.com www.blackfirefood.com

XL REFRIGERATORS Specialists in refrigerated displays Tel: 0113 2577 277 www.xlrefrigerators.com


Mead to bring ‘Game of Thrones’ tipple to modern drinkers By Katie Comer

London’s first and only meadery for 500 years has created a range of flavoured mead in cans as it looks to offer a modern take on the medieval drink. Peckham-based Gosnells of London launched the line-up – which comes in four varieties – last month and is pitching them as a lower alcohol alternative to wine. The 4% ABV drinks’ flavours include: Hibiscus (fruity and tart), Hopped (IPAinspired), Sour (honey and sour notes) and Citra Sea (honey, lemon, tarragon & hops). They are available to the trade via Matthew Clark (RRP £2.90/can off-trade). Popularised in recent years by the hit TV series Game of Thrones, mead is produced by fermenting honey and water with added fruits, spices, grains or hops. It traditionally has a high alcohol content but the brand is hoping to offer a lighter, fresher version as it looks to open up the drink to a wider audience. “Many people think mead is something from the dark ages, strong and sickly sweet,” said owner and founder Tom Gosnell speaking to FFD about the launch.

“These new meads reflect our place as a London brand based in Peckham – complex, onthe-pace, multifaceted and fun.” Gosnells of London, which began in 2014, is targeting both the on- and off-trade with the 330ml cans, a format the brand decided to use for its retail-friendly and environmental qualities. “Cans are a great format,” said Gosnell.

“They’re easily portable, lighter than bottles which means less transport CO2, chill quickly, stack cleverly and are more recyclable.” In response to whether the brand is looking to attract craft beer drinkers with hop-led flavours and colourful labels, Gosnell said he hopes the mead will appeal beyond the craft beer sector. “Those who appreciate Champagne, prosecco or English sparkling wines are starting to see our new meads as comparable in complexity of flavour but much lower in ABV,” he said. “Mead has a longer history than wine or beer and there is a big opportunity to explain it. Sampling is key.” gosnells.co.uk

Go Kombucha eyes premium market with rebrand By Lauren Phillips

Go Kombucha, has unveiled new branding and labels as it looks to establish itself in the fine food sector as a lowalcohol alternative to wines, beers and ciders. The London-based fermented-drinks-maker said it wanted to be seen as a “high-end option” for consumers looking to lower their alcohol intake in both the on- and off-trade. Owner Gary Leigh told FFD that he hopes the rebrand will reinforce the brand’s credentials as an authentic product as more producers join the kombucha market. “Kombucha has grown in popularity in recent years which is great,” says Leigh, “but the multi-nationals are

jumping on the bandwagon so there is a danger of the category being cheapened.” The producer worked with London design agency Colt to complete the £12,000 rebrand which extends across the entire product range including its 750ml bottles of Green Sencha and Red Pu-Erh (RRP £5.99), and the smaller 250ml of China White, Yunnan Gold

and Darjeeling Black (RRP £2.29). It features new white labelling on clear glass bottles which Leigh describes as “modern and trendy but with a Chinese influence” to reflect the drink’s Asian heritage. “We see our Kombucha as an alternative to alcohol. It’s unpasteurised and has that fermented wine-like mouthfeel,” said Leigh, adding that the Red Pu-Erh is “ciderlike” and China White is reminiscent of a champagne or prosecco. Go Kombucha will be unveiling the rebrand at this year’s Speciality & Fine Food Fair, along with a new website launching in October. The brand will be looking for a distributor at the trade show. gokombucha.co.uk

Displays that pay PEP-UP YOUR SHELVES WITH THE GUILD OF FINE FOOD’S RESIDENT MERCHANDISING QUEEN JILLY SITCH There are always items on the shop floor that are tricky to “pretty up”, and wine bottles are one of them. Most are black, dark green or brown in colour and when lined up on a shelf just make a display look closed in and unattractive. Don’t get me wrong, wine can be a brilliant add-on if it’s displayed in an accessible and easy-to-grab way. Which is why I love this set-up at Weeton’s in Harrogate [pictured]. Sharp and clean. The clear Perspex shelving creates breathing space between the bottles, and the light strategically placed underneath lifts the whole display. Mirrors and some clamp lights on tall shelving have the same effect for smaller spaces and budgets. Just make sure to use a feather duster on them every day!

WHAT’S NEW Seggiano will be unveiling its new single-estate organic cherry tomato salsa (trade price £1.90, 330ml) and tomato passata (trade £1.90, 500g) at SFFF19 on stand 2036. Both are made with August field-grown tomatoes, which are said to be picked and processed in the same day to ensure their antioxidant bene its are preserved. seggiano.com Terra Rossa has released a new variety of its Great Taste 2018 3-star award-winning Baba’s Rashi & Dibis. Made with tahini sesame paste & date molasses, the new variety of sweet-savoury spread incorporates salty and spicy caramelised walnuts. The 205g jar is available to the trade direct from the producer (RRP £4.50). terra-rossa.com Vol.20 Issue 8 | September 2019


SHELF TALK My magic ingredient

WHAT’S NEW The Organics drinks range by James White has undergone a vibrant redesign to match its “bold flavours with quality ingredients”. The five-strong range – which includes flavours like carrot & apple, apple & ginger, and pear & raspberry – now has colourful, “naturally bold” design features packaged in 75cl glass bottles (RRP £3). jameswhite.co.uk Cawston Press has revamped a childhood favourite for the adult market with its new Sparkling Orange drink. Made with squeezed oranges, sparkling water and pressed apple juice, the drink balances “sweet against bitter”. RRP £1.19, 330ml. cawstonpress.com The English Whisky Co has created two new liqueurs said to be ideal as a base to any drink or cocktail. The Norfolk redcurrant whisky liqueur combines redcurrants with the company’s own single-malt whisky, while the Norfolk quince whisky liqueur is made from quince juice, mixed with the single malt and a dash of sugar. RRP £19.99, 50cl. englishwhisky.co.uk

Smoky Campfire Marmalade Radnor Preserves FELICITY CLOAKE Food writer and author I caused consternation recently when I was asked, in front of a crowd at Wilderness Festival, whether I liked brown or red sauce on my bacon sandwich. When I said I preferred English mustard and marmalade, the temperature in the tent dropped several degrees in horror. A few people actually walked out, though they may have been heading for the bar. In any case, don’t knock it until you’ve tried it, and don’t try it without first purchasing a pot of Smoky Campfire Marmalade from Powys-based Radnor Preserves, made using oak-smoked water from Anglesey’s Halen Mon and a zesty mix of grapefruit, oranges and lemons. Demerara sugar and maple syrup give real depth to the sweetness, and there’s just a hint of chilli warmth at the end. Not just for sarnies, it’s also gorgeous with baked ham, sausages and hard cheese, or simply on toast – and it makes an unbeatable breakfast martini. Felicity bought hers at Partridges, London

Demerara sugar and maple syrup give real depth to the sweetness

Bramleys meet peanuts in new Irish Black Butter spread By Katie Comer

The Northern Irish producer behind the award-winning apple-based Irish Black Butter has launched what it says is a unique peanut spread as it aims to broaden its appeal. Alastair Bell, the brand’s founder, has developed a spread that combines roasted peanuts with the ingredients of his original Irish Black Butter conserve – including protected status Armagh Bramley apples, treacle, cider brandy and spices. Portrush-based Bell hopes the spread, which is dairy-free and suitable for vegans and vegetarians, will appeal to a wider audience and attract the same amount of 70

September 2019 | Vol.20 Issue 8

attention as his first product. “It was an opportunity to combine a food that’s internationally enjoyed with a product that is inherent to Ireland” he said, adding that he had been receiving requests from customers for flavour variations. “This spread was a journey of discovery”, he said. “I am

finding more and more uses for it every day by talking to my customers. “There are three uses that have stood out to me and they are very simple – with chicken, as a spread on toast or with ice-cream. In fact, it nestles in with ice-cream particularly well”. The spread is currently available online in 200g jars (RRP £5.95) and is sold by distributors in Ireland. Bell said he wants to boost his distribution and get more listings across the UK and beyond. The original Irish Black Butter, which was developed with fellow Northern Irish producer Paul Clarke of En Place Foods, has won a 3-star Great Taste award in both 2018 and 2019. irishblackbutter.com

Delicioso has introduced a ‘Signature Pairings For Cheese’ range, which features five varieties of condiments to pair with certain cheeses. The flavours include raspberry, rose petals & Szechuan pepper for ricotta and mozzarella; black grape & Mallorcan almonds for washedrind reblochon and taleggio; and black fig, Australian macadamia nuts & Jamaican all-spice for gorgonzola and Stilton. Trade prices start at £5.75 for x 6 small jars (RRP £1.75, 30g), £8.75 for x 6 large jars (RRP £2.75, 70g) and £2.50 for a gift set of three jars (RRP £4.75). delicioso.co.uk

Pat Gorman Pies: Great taste, Great Quality





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in n n i w d ar w a s ’ m ar F y r t s Gla n o i t p o n vega “A beautiful delicate pink sorbet with the creaminess of an ice-cream and freshness of a sorbet. We loved the intensity of the raspberry flavour and smoothness of the texture. A very well executed product.” – Great Taste Judge • Vegan & vegetarian suitable • Pasture-to-product assurance • Eco friendly packaging (waxed cardboard) • Zero food miles


For wholesale enquires please email rory.glastryfarm@btconnect.com or call 07927289901 Glastry Farm make luxury ice-creams and dairy-free sorbets fresh on the farm. The premium quality milk produced from their pedigree dairy cows is used to make this product range. The flavours are all batch produced and made in the traditional way to give a quality product, which has been reflected in their numerous awards. The range is nut-free with gluten and egg-free options while the sorbets are dairy -free. being suitable for vegan diets. Having a presence in ALDI stores throughout Ireland and now exporting to United Arab Emirates proves it is a unique product Vol.20 Issue 8 | September 2019


from Cornwall Award-winning


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September 2019 | Vol.20 Issue 8

Haddock & Leek with Cheddar Cheese Fishcakes

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Smoked Salmon & Horseradish Fishcakes

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For all wholesale enquiries, please contact us on the details below:

01472 269871 01472 269871

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SHELF TALK Blue Goose offers greener choice to single-use coffee pods By Katie Comer

Devon-based coffee business Blue Goose has launched a range of compostable pods that offer an environmentally-friendly alternative to single-use capsules. Co-founders Lex Thornely and Nick Ratsey said they have designed the plastic-free capsules – which are made from wood bark – as an alternative to aluminium and plastic which are the typical materials used in making coffee pods. Packaged in sustainably sourced, recyclable cardboard with vegetable inks, the pods come in three varieties including Ethiopian Yirgacheffe, organic Peruvian and an organic Honduran swiss water decaf. “We wanted to prove just how good capsule







1 Taking sweetcorn up a notch Thanks to the rising tide of Mexican cuisine, sweetcorn is getting some serious love in the Capital. The popular Mexican street snack of elote is effectively chargrilled corn on the cob that’s slathered with things like sour cream, garlic, chilli powder and cheese. Recipes vary, and at Kerb’s Elote, you’ll find a version anointed with chipotle, queso fresco and fresh lime. Meanwhile, over at Casa Pastor, you’ll see toasted corn kernels that are mixed with mayonnaise, cojita cheese, jalapeno chillies and epazote. 2 Ayurveda It orginated in India over 3,000 years ago, so Ayurveda was touting ‘wellness’ long before it became a profitable new food category. This approach is more about when, what and how you eat, and Jasmine Hemsley has become a modern face for Ayurveda after publishing her new book East Meets West. Brands like Humble Warrior have taken a lead in this realm with tonics made from turmeric, tulsi and reishi.

@saintpeterspaddo @ldnfeasts C

coffee could taste without compromising on our ethical approach to business,” said Thornely. “We selected speciality grade coffees for which we pay our growers a premium beyond the Fairtrade Minimum Price.” With a 12-month shelf life, the pods are compatible with Nespresso original domestic “drop-through” coffee pod machines and compost within 12 weeks of being placed in council food waste collection. Blue Goose will be available to independent retailers in the next few months with the producer currently in talks with distributors. bluegoose.coffee


3 Freshly Ground Sponsor advert 2016 print ready.pdf

3 Frozen food The frozen food market is estimated to be worth £8.6bn, and it’s only going to get bigger as healthier readymeals begin to creep into the category. has got in on the action with 1 Deliciously 16/08/2016 Ella 10:37 a range that includes cauliflower & lentil dhal, as well as a sweet potato & black bean shepherd’s pie. Direct to consumer brand All Plants also boasts an extensive range of veggie and vegan ready-meals. Given its strong sustainability credentials and its nutrient-preserving powers, the frozen aisle is ripe for expansion.

WHAT’S NEW Tracklements has created a new bacon & onion jam to join its other Special Edition lines. Consisting of crispy pan-fried bacon, caramelised onions with balsamic vinegar, lemon juice and chilli, the jam is pitched as the “perfect” companion to cheese on toast. RRP £3.30, 100g. tracklements.co.uk Soft drinks company Radnor Hills will be launching spring water sourced in a new canned format at this year’s SFFF. The 330ml aluminium cans are fully recyclable with the brand pitching them as “hydration on-the-go” that’s in eco-friendly packaging. radnorhills.co.uk

Croome Cuisine is now making its full range of cheeses in convenient 150g coloured waxed truckles including its award-winning Worcestershire sauce & shallot (RRP £3). The company has also introduced a new black truffle cheese available in 1kg half-moons and 150g wedges as well as the new 150g waxed truckle format. croomecuisine.com Hebridean-based company Isle of Raasay is launching its first hand-crafted gin ahead of the release of its single malt whisky in 2020. The new 70cl gin (RRP £35) is distilled in a Frilli copper pot containing ten different botanicals including rhubarb roots, liquorice roots and juniper berries. The spirit has notes of juniper, orange and rhubarb and is recommended with a strip of orange and tonic. raasaydistillery.com



Vol.20 Issue 8 | September 2019



Hazelnut Crunch

Almond Salted Caramel

Visit us at stand 1220B Speciality & Fine Food Fair


September 2019 | Vol.20 Issue 8





Lunch! returns to London’s ExCeL on 19th and 20th September bringing the food-to-go industry under one roof. If you’re looking to boost your café offering or update your product selection, here’s why you should visit.

Six reasons to visit… Lunch! the contemporary food-to-go show




Meet 400 exhibitors

Sample the newest products

Work with the right people

Retailers visiting this year’s show will have more choice than ever, as a record 400 exhibitors (up from 370 last year) will be gathered under one roof. Returning brands include James White Drinks, Teapigs, and Tracklements, while there will be more than 70 newcomers to the show including General Mills, T2 Tea, Bumblezest and COCO Chocolatier.

There will be plenty of new product launches for retailers to discover and sample at the show. Keep an eye out for Radnor Hills’ new 330ml canned spring water (still and sparkling), Mindful Bites’ vegan panettone, and Re:Nourish’s grab-and-go soup range in “re-heatable” bottles.

With more than 7,000 industry buyers expected to attend the show, from the high-street multiples to local independents, there will be plenty of people to meet and network with. Among those attending are buyers from Greggs, Waitrose and Costa Coffee, as well as the UK’s leading independent retailers, cafés and sandwich shops.




Get advice from the pros

Uncover the next big thing

See the latest innovations

This year sees three Keynote Theatres where visitors can hear from some the UK’s top professionals like Marta Pogroszewska, MD of GAIL’s Bakery, and Arnaud Kaziewicz, director of food & beverage at EAT. There is also the show’s brand new Coffee Shop Keynote with panels such as ‘Growing Coffee Shops’ and ‘Sustainability in Coffee Shops’.

The Start-up Zone will host 28 emerging brands that you would not normally see at trade shows, making it a key feature for retailers looking to differentiate themselves from competitors. Among them are Alternative Foods (vegan products), Flawsome Drinks (juice from wasted fruit), and The Savourists (snack bar brand).

The most innovative food-to-go products launched in the past 12 months will be showcased in a dedicated gallery on the show floor. Across the two days, visitors will be able to vote for their favourite product in the gallery. The finalists will then pitch their products to a panel of experts for a chance to win the Innovation Gold Award. Vol.20 Issue 8 | September 2019


The Guild of Fine Food’s training arm, the School of Fine Food, sees over 1,000 delegates a year learn everything from the basics of cheese and deli products to the detail of running an independent retail business. BUSINESS Our Retail Ready two-day training programme is designed to equip managers or owners of prospective, new or developing delis & farm shops with the business essentials of fine food & drink retailing



£195 inc VAT

29 October (London)

Day course

12 November

CHEESE RETAIL Our one-day course is designed to help independent retailers capitalise on customer interaction, ensure they have the correct range and guarantees that you and your team talk intelligently about cheese to your customers

18 September (London)

ACADEMY OF CHEESE The Guild is a founding patron and training provider of the Academy. It’s trusted and structured learning provides an academic pathway for anyone in the business, and equally cheese-loving consumers. It does for cheese what the Wine & Spirits Education Trust does for wine





October (London) (London)





28 October (London)

10 September (London)


17 September (London)

Contact Jilly Sitch for further


information and course fees.

October (Gillingham, Dorset)

24-25 September (London)

For more details of all School of Fine Food programmes, courses, fees and dates, visit gff.co.uk/training or contact jilly.sitch@gff.co.uk, +44 (0)1747 825200

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Vol.20 Issue 8 | September 2019


DELI OF THE MONTH The Seasons in Forest Row has been championing natural and organic products since the 1970s. But it has transformed into a modern, thriving business since director Robin Walden took the helm five years ago. Interview by Lauren Phillips

Changing at The Seasons EVERY GOOD RETAILER would say they have a discerning customer base, but the shoppers at The Seasons, situated in the East Sussex village of Forest Row, take “eagle-eyed” to another level. “If we put a product out there that didn’t fit in with our ethos, my customers would be pretty quick off the mark to say ‘What the hell is this doing here? Have you looked at that ingredient?’,” says director Robin Walden. Thankfully, the second-generation owner of the shop is just as astute as his customers. The Seasons is a fine example of a modern wholefoods retailing business, but that’s because everything – from its sourcing policy down to the building’s newly fitted eco-cladding – is underpinned by its desire: to be a sustainable and ethical retailer. This has fuelled its success as a business turning over £2 million a year and the runner-up in the specialist food shop category at the 2019 Guild of Fine Food’s Shop of the Year.


Location: Medway House, Lower Road, Forest Row, RH18 5HE Turnover: £2m Average basket spend: £20-40 Floor area: 155m2 Number of staff: 24 total (5 full-time) 78

September 2019 | Vol.20 Issue 8

The shop has evolved immensely since it was first opened by a Quaker farmer from Kent in 1971. In the early '80s, the Walden family joined the business through Robin’s dad, John Walden, who soon became a director and then bought the shop in 2012. Walden junior - who recalls spending his youth helping in the shop during the school holidays - came on board five years ago with the aim of taking the shop into the 21st Century. In the last two years, he has overseen the restructuring of the shop to shed the “small, stuffy and higgledy-piggledy” layout of a traditional wholefoods store and added new outdoor signage to “smarten up the shop front and stand out a bit more”. This timely upgrade is also a reaction to the huge consumer appetite for wholefoods, vegan alternatives and organic products which has emerged in the last few years – and to other

businesses that now want a slice of this lucrative market. “People are jumping on the bandwagon a bit,” says Walden. “But we know what we’re talking about. We know what our products are, what the ingredients are, and what they can be good for.” This revamp has paid off, too. The shop has experienced huge spikes in sales in the last two years from a wider demographic who, traditionally, wouldn’t have visited an organic shop for their groceries. “We’ve seen more younger people visiting and we’ve taken on more of the high-end market as well,” he says. “Especially since the shop looks more attractive, people are happier to come in here than when it looked a bit scruffy.” The shop still has a loyal “socks-and-sandals” customer base, as well as the young mums who have always bought organic produce for their children on the school run.

This is helped by a local Steiner school in Forest Row (an alternative private school that encourages learning through creativity) which means there are a lot of consumers following a holistic lifestyle in the area. “That’s been a core part of our customer base,” says Walden. “Caring for the environment goes hand-in-hand with organic and biodynamic farming, so that’s helped the business grow and sustain here.” The shop also attracts young professionals coming in for their organic fruit & veg, homogenised milk or nut mylk, sourdough loaf and premium dark chocolate on a weekday lunch hour or evening commute. This varied trade isn’t just local, either. The shop draws customers from within a 20-mile radius, reaching as far as Reigate in Surrey and Royal Tunbridge Wells in Kent. Walden attributes this to the strong and large product range. “There is no shop like us in this area” says Walden. “We’ve seen a few farm shops come and go but nothing substantial. It would be difficult for another shop to even catch up or open something of this size.” The shop’s offering has grown and evolved from bran, brown rice and standard fruit & veg of the ‘80s and ‘90s. It now covers a wide range of categories across its two floors – fresh and chilled everyday essentials downstairs and dried goods and non-food products upstairs. “We try and aim for all sorts of markets and products that could please everyone and if you get the range right you will attract those markets,” he says, adding: “We try not to be pretentious or too expensive, but still have good quality products that people are willing to spend extra on.” That doesn’t mean every product in the wholefoods’ category makes it on shelf and

Walden’s stringent checklist for sourcing products only offers a small window for brands. The shop prides itself on being a retailer of organic and biodynamic foods, with 90% of its 4,200 lines in store classed as organic. Many items in the shop come from local organic suppliers. High Weald Dairy in Haywards Heath and Plaw Hatch Farm in East Grinstead supply the shop’s cheeses and yoghurts, Conscious Chocolate provides raw, organic chocolate bars, while The Sussex Kitchen, a bakery five miles down the road, delivers fresh organic sourdough bread daily. The shop relies on two farms for its organic eggs including the village’s Orchard Eggs farm. There are two specialist distributors that Walden uses, which adds another layer to the vetting process for products that don’t meet the brief. Marigold tops up chilled goods like juices and vegan cheeses, while Infinity Foods supplies most of its dried and ambient lines. “We know if they’re listing a product they’ve gone through and checked where it’s come from, how it’s made, how it’s sourced and if it’s sustainable or ecological,” he says. While the director has little issue with a stocked brand appearing in supermarkets, he refuses to deal with brands or products from multinational companies and isn’t afraid to drop a best-selling line that gets taken over. One wellknown tea brand was recently dropped by the shop after it was bought out by Unilever. “They were brilliant products, available everywhere but we still sold a lot of them,” he says. “But for them to jump into bed with Unilever just seemed absolutely crazy. One of the worst, most polluting, unethical, disgusting food

MUST-STOCKS Apples & bananas The Sussex Kitchen seeded sourdough loaf Conscious Chocolate – Citrus Zest Orchard Eggs San Amvrosia hummus Brush with bamboo toothbrushes Flax Farm Flaxjacks Berkeley Farm salted Guernsey butter Infinity Wholefoods nuts & seeds Plaw Hatch Farm yoghurt


Vol.20 Issue 8 | September 2019


No added fat & gluten free delicious straight from the jar not just for mince pies

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September 2019 | Vol.20 Issue 8


companies around. So, we stopped selling them.” While some customers were initially put out by this, they agreed with the retailer’s decision once they understood the reason behind it. “If we want to provide food that is good for the planet and good for us, then it makes sense that we source ethically as well as environmentally,” says Walden. These days, the retailer spends a lot of time fielding cold calls from salespeople and separating the consistent sellers from the "gimmicky" products. One fad Walden mentions is brands cramming the latest lauded superfood into their products. “Spirulina was really big a few years ago,” he says. “It’s a really good superfood, but you would end up with snack bars, crisps and chocolate coming through with spirulina in them, and you think, do you need to have it?” Conversely, sourcing naturally gluten-free and vegan products can also be difficult because a lot of those are bulked out with fillers, sweeteners and sugars, says Walden. “We have a lot of people coming in now wanting gluten-free food, but we just don’t feel the quality is there to fulfil that.”

A recent addition to the shop is a refill station, housing 18 lines of grains, rice and pulses, which reduces plastic-packaging in store and falls easily in line with the eco-friendly, natural way of living. Aside from having to rearrange the storeroom and shop floor, the concept allows staff to fill an entire dispenser in the same time it would take to put 10 products on a shelf. It also offers a respectable 30% margin for the retailer and an average 10-15% saving for the customer depending on what size bag they purchase. Walden works to a modest 20-30% margin on its dried goods and 30-35% margin on fresh (non-food items are set at 40%), preferring to encourage a higher volume of sales than price out some customers. “We try and make it as affordable and as accessible as possible,” he says. “We could easily put our prices up, but we don’t believe that is ethically the right thing to do, and if we can sell enough of a product, we don’t have to charge that.” It’s a mindset that’s paying off. The shop is selling 130 tubs of hummus a week, which has prompted the retailer to produce its own range of cannellini bean dips and lentil hummus.

Having modernised the premises in Forest Row, Walden is now focusing his attention on a second site in Lewes which is due to open its doors at the end of this month. The new location, which is a 30-minute drive south from the original store, was chosen by Walden after some extensive market research which involved visiting numerous towns and paying a lot of attention to plastic-free and vegan groups online. “We’d been looking at where the demand and interest was,” says Walden. “Lewes has a good alternative scene and very nice boutique and high-end kitchen shops, so we know there is a bit of money there, too.” The new site will be 70% the size of the original shop, offering fewer lines but a larger zero waste and fresh goods section. While Walden acknowledges that the first six months of trading will be hard work, he’s got a team, including a shop manager, in place and there’s already a buzz on social media about the opening since it was first announced. No doubt, the new customers in Lewes will be just as discerning as those in Forest Row. seasonsforestrow.co.uk

There is no shop like us in this area. It would be difficult for another shop to even catch up or open something of this size.

Vol.20 Issue 8 | September 2019


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September 2019 | Vol.20 Issue 8


View from HQ

Sadly, precious few politicians have ever run a business, which might explain why they are so cavalier with our money

“MY BUSINESS RATES are £1,000 a day,” bemoaned Partridges’ John Shepherd during lunch at this year’s final Great Taste judging day, adding wryly: “I need to sell a lot of cheese to cover that.” Long before black fly on my broad beans and unpaid childcare duties consumed my life, I would occasionally wake in the early hours fretting over my business outgoings, particularly those outside my control. Running a small firm has always been tough, as I well know.

By Bob Farrand chairman


news from the guild of fine food Next year we celebrate this magazine’s 40th anniversary, albeit we called it Good Food Retailing back then. At the time, its circulation included 4,700 delis and independent grocers. By 1994, supermarkets were decimating high streets. Over 2,500 of those small shops had closed, and research suggested there were fewer than 1,000 delis left in the UK. In that year, John Shepherd called me to suggest we do something to halt what he saw as a potentially terminal decline and, together with seven other like-minded businesses, we formed the Guild of Fine Food. That same year, the Guild created Great Taste, the independent benchmark for fine food, giving producers and retailers a point of difference over supermarkets. In 1996, contrary to much sage advice, the Guild launched the Fine Food Fair at Sandown Park, a forum for small producers to meet indie retailers that five years later became the Speciality & Fine Food Fair. Perversely, it wasn’t the Guild

but the 2001 foot-and-mouth epidemic that finally aroused consumer suspicions about how and where supermarket foods were produced. As a result, the last 15 years have witnessed the emergence of a thousand or so new regional producers and almost 3,000 new farm shops and delicatessens. Forty years on, the fine food landscape appears far healthier, although debilitating business rates along with inflated high street rents may pose a greater threat to independents than supermarkets ever did. Sadly, precious few politicians have ever run a business which might explain why they are so cavalier with our money and how we ended up with a Prime Minister once quoted as saying, ‘‘f*** business”. P.S. If you were a food producer or independent food retailer back in 1980, please get in touch via editorial@gff.co.uk. We’d love to know more about you for our anniversary issue in 2020. • John Farrand is in post-Great Taste therapy.

shelves on casters in its upstairs ecoshop, which can be slid aside to clear the floor for evening events.




The Guild of Fine Food represents fine food shops and specialist suppliers. Want to join them?



Want to be a Shop of the Year winner? Feedback from our expert judges reveals those retail details where crucial points are won and lost

MOVEABLE FEASTS Wish you had more space for seasonal displays or hosting events? Why not make some of your “fixtures” a bit less fixed, and incorporate moveable shelving and island units into your shop layout. Aberdeen’s Foodstory Café has


Guild of Fine Food Guild House, 23b Kingsmead Business Park, Shaftesbury Road, Gillingham, Dorset SP8 5FB UK Tel: +44 (0) 1747 825200 Fax: +44 (0) 1747 824065 info@gff.co.uk gff.co.uk

THE GUILD TEAM: Managing director: John Farrand Marketing director: Tortie Farrand Sales director: Sally Coley Sales manager: Ruth Debnam


Friendly, knowledgeable and personable staff are crucial. Angry, argumentative or sulky staff drag your whole business down. So focus management time on the “weakest link” who may be costing you repeat business.

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What does your car park say about you? If the tarmac is in bits or it’s littered with broken pallets, waste cardboard or weeds it’s doing you no favours. It’s the first and last thing many of your visitors will see, so take advantage of a slow morning to get out there with a pressure hose and do some outdoor housekeeping.

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Shop interiors aren’t all about shelves and serveovers. Take a minute to look into the less obvious corners, like staircases to upstairs loos, and make sure they reflect well on your brand.


• Compiled from feedback by retail experts and Insight6 mystery shoppers on visits to shortlisted stores in the Guild of Fine Food’s Shop of the Year competition. Visit gff.co.uk/soty for details.

Sales executive: Becky Haskett Sales support: Sam Coleman Operations manager: Karen Price Operations assistants: Claire Powell, Emily Harris, Janet Baxter

Training & events manager: Jilly Sitch Events manager: Stephanie HareWinton Events assistant: Sophie Brentnall Financial controller: Stephen Guppy

Accounts manager: Denise Ballance Accounts assistant: Julie Coates Chairman: Bob Farrand Director: Linda Farrand

Vol.20 Issue 8 | September 2019


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September 2019 | Vol.20 Issue 8

news from the guild of fine food

The word on

Westminster By Steve Dowling ACS BORIS JOHNSON’S priorities might be to renegotiate a Brexit deal with Brussels and step up ‘no deal’ preparations at home, but amongst a frenzy of activity there have been a number of domestic policy announcements, including those on NHS funding and extra police officers. As rumours abound that we could be heading for a General Election as early as November, there are things the new Prime Minister could and should be doing for small shops. What’s more, many of these wouldn’t actually require legislation to pass through a Brexitoccupied Parliament. There’s a real

opportunity here for Johnson to set the tone with small businesses for the rest of his premiership. To start, he could extend the one-third business rates discount announced in the last Budget beyond 2021. Although we need a more detailed review of rates, giving small shops an assurance these won’t increase significantly in 2021 would be a quick, effective, probusiness, pro-investment measure. Secondly, the Prime Minister should build on his opposition to ‘sin

There’s an opportunity for Boris Johnson to set the tone with small businesses for the rest of his premiership

taxes’ by reassuring small shops they won’t bear the brunt of restrictions on the siting and promotion of high fat, salt and sugar products by entrances, tills or aisle ends. These proposals to tackle obesity would be interventionist, bureaucratic and costly for retailers to implement, and would perhaps bear most heavily on specialist food shops whose taste-led, artisan ranges often have

a similar fat, sugar and salt profile to mass market ranges in convenience stores and supermarkets. Forcing all products that meet these blunt criteria into a small part of a small shop just isn’t practical, and won’t encourage and support innovative small businesses. Finally, the PM should review the interchange fees paid by banks to ATM operators. Not many delis or farm food shops host cash machines, but all types of shop benefit from consumers having access to cash, and the 10% reduction in bank funding for these facilities has seen free-to-use cash machines decline sharply in the last year. These commitments would show government support at a time when new ACS research shows how valued community-based businesses are. Our Community Barometer 2019 found that consumers view convenience stores as the service with the second most positive impact on local areas, while specialist food shops such as deli counters and farm shops are their most wanted service. Boris Johnson might not pass many bills in his first hundred days, but he can still be very helpful to small shops. Steve Dowling is public affairs manager at small shops group ACS


obliged by Article support the 3 of Regulation growth of Listeria (EC) 2073/2005 monocytogenes If cheese is to be to ensure “that the – the main portioned in-store, the food safety criteria pathogen of applicable throughout concern during manufacture should the shelf-life of the the shelf life of consider this when a cheese – so determining shelf life products can be met under reasonably the safety of the foreseeable cheese is unlikely conditions of to become distribution, storage and use”. compromised if it is stored beyond This means that if the cheese seven days. is to be portioned in-store, Moulds on the cut face of the manufacturer should have hard cheeses can be removed by Paul Thomas considered this when determining scraping or slicing to maintain the shelf life they pass on to product quality. Such cheeses are Technical and regulatory you. So you can follow the likely to carry a best-before rather advice from the Guild’s manufacturer’s use-by date, than a use-by date. deli helpline although you must not sell a Soft, ripened cheeses may be product beyond that date. more likely to support the growth Q: My EHO has visited my small You should also, of course, have of Listeria than hard cheeses. There shop and told me all soft cheeses effective prerequisite controls is some evidence in the scientific should be sold within three days covering areas such as cleaning and literature that Listeria may be more of being cut into, and hard cheeses likely to grow on the cut face of disinfection of cutting equipment. within seven days. Is this right? soft cheeses, though there is also evidence that this is less likely if Dairy and food safety specialist A: This is not a legal requirement the contaminant is introduced after Paul Thomas runs the Guild’s under European regulations, though manufacture, than if it is present in e-helpline for retailers with some major retailers do have policies the milk. technical or regulatory queries. It can be accessed through the on this issue. When setting shelf life, the Guild Members’ Hub at gff.co.uk Hard cheeses are less likely to manufacturer of the cheese is

The deli doctor

Time for indies to get on board with British Food Fortnight BRITISH Food Fortnight, which starts on 21st September is a wonderful chance to add theatre By Vhari Russell to your shop and your counters by sharing all things British and local with your customers. It’s an opportunity many of the bigger retailers have been involved in for years, but it’s now time for independents to get involved in this campaign and drive sales and traffic into their shops. The supermarkets can throw lots of budget behind it, but don’t necessarily have the flair and the wide array of products stocked by the independents. This is the 17th year of this two-week foodie promotion, which is growing from strength to strength. There are activities across all sectors of the food industry, with events across the country. It is not too late for you to create your promotions for the fortnight, showcasing products that are British and local. You could offer promotions around recipes for classic British dishes, for example. Or how about giving discounts on British cheese one week, then create the ultimate British breakfast offer the following week with everything from jam to bacon . The key is to have fun with it, engage your customers and share it with the team at British Food Fortnight, who offer a range of ready-to-use point-ofsale ideas and advice booklets on their website. lovebritishfood.co.uk

Vhari Russell is founder of The Food Marketing Experts and Grub Club Events.

Vol.20 Issue 8 | September 2019


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September 2019 | Vol.20 Issue 8