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34|Retail News|October 2019|www.retailnews.ie

Food & Drink Business Conference and Exhibition

Innovation to the Fore at Expo Aaron Dodd reports from the 2019 Food & Drink Business Conference & Exhibition, where a range of seminars covered some of the biggest issues facing the industry today. OVER 2,000 visitors from across Ireland attended the Food & Drink Business Conference and Exhibition 2019 on Thursday, September 5, in the Citywest Convention Centre, Dublin. The exhibition is now in its seventh year and has become a ‘must-attend’ event for those working in the food and drink industry. The visitors represented every facet of the food and drink industry from suppliers of ingredients, raw materials and finished goods to the processing, packaging and labelling sector and the advertising and marketing whizzes, as well as the retail and wholesale sectors. Attendees could test and taste the latest products and developments from leading industry innovators, and also had the opportunity to attend a wide range of seminars and presentations, covering all aspects of retailing in Ireland, from the sustainability of the Irish farming industry to the changing expectations of consumers and even what hashtags to use when promoting your product on social media. Sustainability & Plastic Packaging Louise Sullivan, Director of Public Affairs & Communications, Coca-Cola HBC Ireland and Northern Ireland, set the tone for the day when she delivered an informative presentation on the issue of plastic packaging and what Coca-Cola plans to do going forward to tackle this global problem. The most striking part of the presentation was the discussion of a

new Coca-Cola campaign, World Without Waste. World Without Waste is a bold strategy that will see Coca-Cola collect and recycle a bottle or can for every one it sells by 2030. Additionally, it aims to offer 100% recyclable packaging by 2025 and create packaging with at least 50% recycled material by 2030. Continuing the theme of tackling environmental issues in the industry, a lively panel discussion took place after Sullivan’s presentation. Justin Carton, Director of Projects at Manor Farm, along with Denis O’Brien, Director of Standards & Solutions, GS1 Ireland, and Jackie Cahill, Fianna Fáil TD for Tipperary and spokesperson on Food & Horticulture; and Gavin Cartland, Head of Commercial & Category at Bio-tiful Dairy Ltd, tried to answer the questions surrounding the sustainability of the meat and dairy industry. The sustainability issue was brought into stark focus by the fact that the Amazon rainforest was burning while the discussion took place, a result of

Brazilian farmers looking to create more land to farm. The question was posed to the panellists that with more than 4m tonnes of maize and soy being imported into Ireland from Brazil and other South American countries for cattle and poultry, should farmers look for alternative food sources? Justin Carton explained that Manor Farm has developed “micro-circular economies” which means that they grow their own wheat, feed it to the chickens and then use the poultry litter as fertilizer to grow more wheat. This circular economy approach creates independence from the global market and could be part of the answer to the sustainability issue; it also ties into the modern consumer’s desire for products that are sustainable and environmentally-friendly. The Future for the Fuel Sector Sustainability is not only an issue for the food and drink industry. Kevin McPartlan, CEO of the Irish Petroleum Industry Association (IPIA) also tackled the issue

Profile for Retail News

Retail News October 2019  

Retail News, is Ireland’s longest established FMCG B2B magazine. It has been around for over 60 years, from the birth of the supermarket, th...

Retail News October 2019  

Retail News, is Ireland’s longest established FMCG B2B magazine. It has been around for over 60 years, from the birth of the supermarket, th...

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