The Speciality & Fine Food Fair returns to Olympia London on 5-6 September with three stages - the Food for Thought Stage, the Taste the Trends Kitchen and the Inspiration Bar, curated by Mixology School, covering a wide range of topics in the world of speciality food and drink.
The Fair will kick off with a session from Charles Banks of thefoodpeople and Kelly Dowson of Good Sense Research taking a dive into the latest trends in sustainability and food and drink, followed by an in-depth session with Artisan Food Club's Marcus Carter, Julia Kirby-Smith of Fridge of Plenty, Holtwhites Bakery's Kate Smith and Jan Robijns of The Broadway Deli & Grocery as they look at how a personalised customer service can lead to an increase in total basket spend.
Robijns commented: "As a long-term visitor and previously also exhibitor, the fair has always been very valuable for me. Now more than ever it seems, it is important to stay on top of interesting and exciting products, brands and developments."
The Food for Thought Stage will also see a session hosted by WGSN's Head of Food and Drink Jennifer Creevy, who will be joined by Liam Jones of food sharing app Olio and Olympia London's Abbey Short as they discuss tackling surplus food in the sector.
"Food waste remains a huge challenge for the food and drink industry, as is measuring our overall progress as an industry," said Creevy. "Yet, as we have forecast on WGSN, there are many exciting innovations that are rising up to tackle this important issue. I'm excited to lead the panel at Speciality & Fine Food Fair to discuss innovations around food waste and share best practice with our audience."
In addition to further sessions on growing your business amidst the cost-of-living crisis, recruitment and retention, some fantastic food failures (and what we can learn from them) and turning the hybrid business model dream into reality, the Food for Thought Stage will also host the Speciality & Fine Food Fair Awards from 5pm on Tuesday 5 September.
Newly launched food and drink brands will also be highlighted as part of Pitch Live, sponsored by Virgin StartUp, which will give three exhibiting suppliers the chance to pitch their product to a panel of industry experts.
The Taste the Trends Kitchen will see consultant and chef Steve Walpole exploring various trends in food and drink and working with partners including the Guild of Fine Food and the World Charcuterie Awards.
Across the two days of the event, Walpole will be exploring the healthy food movement, the influences of Japanese and Korean food and drink on Western cuisine, plant-based foods and what it means to be producing ethical products.
Walpole added: "I can't wait to be back at Speciality & Fine Food Fair, cooking up a storm with some amazing guest speakers."
The Inspiration Bar at the heart of the show's Drinks Cabinet section, partners with Mixology School to share best practice and insights into the world of alcoholic and no & low drinks products.