Cake companies were out in force at last week’s Caffè Culture show in London, hoping their exclusive delicacies would catch the eye of a passing Starbucks buyer.
Caffè Culture, now in its second year, took place at the London Olympia exhibition centre, with 175 exhibitors, including Typhoo, Nestlé, Café Direct, Dairy Crest, First Choice Coffee, Love Smoothies and ProJuice, and a host of other food, drink, packaging, computer systems and distribution suppliers.Bakers among them included Clam’s Handmade Cakes, The Handmade Cake Company, Honeyrose Bakery, Just Cakes, Kate’s Cakes and Sugar and Spice.
Caffè Culture was Manchester-based Martins Cakes & Desserts’ first trade show. The company, which already supplies customers including Debenhams, took a stand to target the big coffee chains, with products including thaw-and-serve artisan scones, in varieties such as rosemary & vine fruit and fig & aniseed. Development director Allison Pickup said the company is focusing on developing traditional British products, and can work directly with customers to make bespoke products.
Bakery supplier Dawn Foods came to the show to launch a new generic brand ’Sweet Bakery Box’. Aimed at foodservice operators, the range includes cookies and milkshake muffins. Each product is wrapped individually and packaged in small cases.
Among the other product launches at the show was a high-profile relaunch of Typhoo Tea’s decaffeinated tea range for the foodservice market and three new speciality teas, Assam, Earl Grey and English Breakfast.
London-based chain Coffee Republic took a stand at the show to canvas potential franchisees. The chain now has 46 bars, 32 of which are franchises, said UK franchise director Kevin Frostick, and it plans to recruit new franchisees all around the UK.
Caffè Culture also boasted a range of seminars, debates and demonstrations from industry experts, baristas and catering professionals, about issues facing the industry. The Caffè Theatre saw chefs and baristas provide practical food and latte art demonstrations, giving inspiration to those looking to offer new food and drink ideas to their customers. Meanwhile, business presentations from top names in the trade included Fiacra Nagle, CEO of O’Brien’s Sandwich Bars, and Phil Abbott, MD of the BB’s Coffee and Muffins chain.
The show was certainly the place for the food-to-go supplier to see and be seen. n