The inaugural Ingredients Show outperforms expectations in first year

Organisers announce The Ingredients Show will return to the NEC, Birmingham from 8-10 April 2019


10 May 2018 – Professionals from across the UK food development community descended on the NEC, Birmingham from 16-18 April for the inaugural Ingredients Show 2018. The event, part of the line-up of UK food shows, joined Foodex, Food & Drink Expo, Farm Shop & Deli Show and the National Convenience Show to offer the highly innovative UK food development market a dedicated UK event to source everything from new flavours and ingredients to finished products.

The five co-located shows saw both exhibitor and visitor numbers increase cementing their position as the number one, free-to-attend UK food shows. Visitors flooded the halls to discover the latest ingredients and core trends driving consumer demand – from sustainability to nutrition, novel ingredients to new tastes and flavours.

The success of The Ingredients Show – an event solely dedicated to food and drink ingredients – highlights the industry’s growing success in the UK where more than 8,000 companies, operating across 9,000 manufacturing sites are producing more than 16,000 new products every year. It was supported by William Reed’s specialist industry leading food development publications and Dominating the global sector, these publications helped enforce the show’s position to more than 120,000 food development professionals, 18,000 of whom are in the UK.

Speaking about exhibiting at the event, Chris Melton, General Manager at Döhler said, “The quality of B2B customers has been good. We're broadly confident we're walking away with strong leads and estimate 30-40% of them will likely materialise into business. The seminar theatre has been a real benefit and there has been a good variation of topics.”

Lovvie Bahbutta, Sales Director of Diana Food, added: “It's great to meet new contacts as well as those we have an existing relationship with. We didn't expect to see so many visitors from overseas and have had representatives from across Asia and Southern Eastern Europe - it’s been a great surprise!”

Highlighting future flavours and trends

With leading ingredient manufacturers such as Döhler, GNT Group, Diana Food, EHL Ingredients, RAP and TATA Chemicals Europe joining the line-up, The Ingredients Show demonstrated innovation and inspiration, with visitors exploring a wide range of new ingredients and flavours making an impact on the market. On the RAP stand, visitors explored a wide range of bakery and fresh products including its new VolumeFit – a product concept developed to improve the look and taste of filled pastry and baked products.  It also showcased a wide range of fresh and ambient marinades and sauces encapsulating the latest trends in Korean, Thai and Indonesian cuisine.

Speaking about the show, Suzanne Scott, Procurement, Symington’s, said: “We came to The Ingredients Show to look for free-from ingredients suppliers. It's been a very interesting show and a good place to source new suppliers for the food manufacturers we work with.”

Over on the Linwoods stand, the producer of healthy super foods launched its innovative new ingredients business, showcasing a range of sprouted and unsprouted flours, grains and seeds offering a unique and on-trend addition to the bakery and health food categories. The products, which are stone milled in the Northern Ireland countryside, and include ancient grains such as Spelt, Kamut and Sorghum, use a sprouting technique, which activates dormant seeds to utilise their stored energy, helping to provide consumers with a natural and healthy energy boost.

Speaking about the launch, Patrick Woods, Director of Linwoods explains: “Linwoods has always been at the cutting edge of healthy food, and our new ingredients business is no different. The ingredients are highly innovative and can be added to a wide range of products, making them the perfect addition to a well-balanced diet and healthy lifestyle.”

Fellow exhibitor, EHL ingredients announced its new focus on the foodservice sector with new herb and spice blends as well as vegan, gluten-free and organic ingredients. Recognising that manufacturers are constantly on the look out for innovative, tasty and nutritious foods, EHL demonstrated how food manufacturers and processors can use new ingredients to offer appealing vegan options, as well as developing formulations and recipes for soups, sauces, marinades, meal kits and world foods such as curries, tagines and stews suited for food allergy sufferers.

New product launches were also recognised in the Great New Idea competition, which saw Novo Farina scoop the title for its new British grown, nutritious, naturally gluten-free pea flour. Made from selected British peas, Novo Farina flours are high in protein, dietary fibre and essential minerals, whilst also being very low in fat, making them ideal for the health-conscious and a wide range of functional product development needs.

Speaking about the Great New Idea accolade, Vicki Myhill, Marketing Sales & Co-ordinator, said: “The show has been fantastic, and we've met a variety of companies, from food manufacturers to fellow ingredients suppliers. Winning the Great New Idea award really confirms what we believe, which is that we’re launching a great new product! It is wonderful to be recognised by the judges and since we were announced as winners we had lots of traffic to the stand, generating lots of strong leads.”

Spotting future flavours and trends

On hand to inform and educate visitors and exhibitors, a series of the industry’s foremost thought-leaders came together at The Ingredients Show to deliver cutting-edge presentations, live demonstrations and new product launches aimed at championing UK ingredients and inspiring the next phase of product development. As primary media partners, editorial teams from and demonstrated their first-hand knowledge and expertise to address the big issues in food development, welcoming the industry’s more foremost thought leaders to share insights into topics such as health and nutrition to food function and performance.

Hitting headlines, the plastic waste debate came to the NEC when a panel of experts offered attendees advice on how to meet consumer demand for reduced plastics. Joining the panel, Catherine Conway, Founder, Unpackaged Innovation Ltd; Henri Allen, Head of Operations, A Plastic Planet; Tony Hitchin, General Manager, Pro Carton; and Duncan Curtis, Director, Rappor Metrics shared their insights on the current challenges and opportunities facing the industry in what was described as ‘the perfect storm’. In light of recent developments in potential taxation on the use of plastics within the industry, the panel agreed that further government action was needed to help ‘enforce and change attitudes – within industry and with consumers’, and that legislation could be a ‘game changer’.

Revealing insights into new smoke and flavour trends, Dave Baines, Managing Director, Baines Food Consultancy was joined by Huw Griffiths, CEO & Founder, Besmoke/PureSmoke to demonstrate the increased consumer interest in smoked products and reveal the art and science of smoke flavourings that come from safer, flavoursome smoking processes.

The topic of future flavours was further explored by Martin Wood, Head of Strategic Insight, Retail CGD at the IRI, who provided attendees with an in-depth insight into upcoming habits, with cross-category insights that revealed consumer buying trends. Martin revealed that changing demographics are impacting the industry, with premium sector growth, gastrophysics and labelling all impacting consumer trends in 2018.

Wood’s presentation painted a picture of a more complicated landscape with consumers more suspicious of product impurities. He also predicted that provenance, food safety and healthy eating as well as healthcare would continue to impact new product development.

Speaking about the UK Food Shows, Andrew Reed, Managing Director – Events & Exhibitions, William Reed, said: “The line-up and content from an exhibitor and visitor point of view demonstrates the innovative and entrepreneurial spirit of the UK food sector, despite the negative headlines we’ve seen daily regarding Brexit. With improving attendance levels, we can see a vibrant future for the industry. William Reed is committed to the UK market and we look forward to many more years hosting the shows and providing business critical information.”

As part of the UK Food Shows, The Ingredients Show will return in 2019 to the NEC, Birmingham from 8-10 April 2019, with exhibitors Foodie Flavours and HB Ingredients already confirmed to exhibit. It will once again be co-located with Farm Shop & Deli Show, National Convenience Show incorporating Pro Retail and The Forecourt Show.

For more information and to register your interest to attend, please visit: