20 February 2019, 15:51 PM
Farm Shop & Deli Show has announced its top speaker line up for 2019

In addition to the top produce, equipment and gifting options on show, visitors will also be drawn to the Farm Shop & Deli Live stage, where a host of industry leaders will share their thoughts and experience on issues ranging from the rise of gin, to ethical eating and tapping into the healthy appetite for the wellness market, plus an array of other topical talking points that are key in today’s industry.

Each session will offer real business insights and share exclusive tips to help retailers make small changes to achieve big results and keep one step ahead of competitors. The series of talks provides the chance for top end, independent retailers and buyers, caterers, importers, distributors and wholesalers to discover some of the best produce on offer today.

The Farm Shop & Deli Live stage will host a ‘Plastic to palm oil’ discussion, which will be top of the list for retailers of all sizes looking to address consumers’ current eco-worries. A responsible retailers’ roundtable, chaired by author, chef and broadcaster Richard Fox, will put across simple hacks to create a sustainable store, with plenty of practical and affordable tips to put into action right away.

Visitors will also be able to pick up top tips on how stores can align with wellness and healthy lifestyle trends. Founder of Glowing Potential Emily Foster will explore the $4.2 trillion wellness market, with advice on how to cash in on shoppers looking for healthy nutritious and Instagram-friendly food and drink.

A focus on healthy living is an area where customers are demanding innovation and the drinks market has not been exempt from a shift towards products backed by health claims. The ‘Healthier beer’ discussion with David Ware from Greens Brewery, Rob Fink from Big Drop Brewing and Graeme Louden from CGA, will offer insight into the importance of burgeoning brews from gluten free to zero alcohol.

While good beers and wine are fundamental to any catering outlet, cheese carries just as much importance in farm shops and delis. Visitors will be given advice on how to conquer the cheese category in the taster session of The Academy of Cheese’s Structured Learning Course. Cheesemonger Ruth Holbrook from Paxton & Whitfield will be on hand to answer questions on creating a counter that’s a cut above the rest, while the Academy’s founding Director Tracey Colley will share her passion for this most integral part of any deli counter.

Another big draw to the Farm Shop & Deli Live stage will be a discussion on ‘Better by design: improve your store environment’, which will offer both cost-free and practical quick wins to boost sales by transforming the look and feel of a traditional farm shop. Richard Ford, Associate Director of Sherlock Studios, will focus on how to do things differently to surprise customers with innovative store design.

A wealth of sales and marketing secrets will also be put forward in the psychology led session from Digital Blonde’s Karen Fewell, who will lead visitors through clear insights on effective methods to supercharge marketing strategies. Real life examples will demonstrate how to put advice in to action and boost sales.

With three days of sessions, visitors can expect to pick up an abundance of business advice, including guidance from brothers David and Stephen Flynn of The Happy Pear, who will share details of how they built their plant-based food empire and overcame challenges along the way. The duo has expanded their in-store presence, maximised on diversification, and have even launched their own retail range, which is stocked in Waitrose. With a fundamental understanding of their customers and a successful online offer, attending retailers could learn a thing or two from the Flynn brothers.

Farm Shop & Deli Show is co-located with the National Convenience Show, where the Retailer Hub will host several sessions of interest to Farm Shop & Deli Show visitors. Richard Lim, CEO of Retail Economics, will lead the discussion on ‘Success after Brexit: What’s next for food and grocery’ – a must-attend for retailers looking to understand the risks posed to the sector in a post-Brexit reality, while seizing new opportunities. Additionally, Alan Mahon, the brains behind purpose-driven craft beer Brewgooder, will also be on hand with advice on how to give convenience store consumers a new ethical choice at the chiller.