Some 200 visitors attended the first Scottish Bakers’ Fair, held in Edinburgh on 24 September.
Twenty-seven ingredients and equipment suppliers and trade bodies took stands at the regional event, organised by William Reed Events and the Scottish Association of Master Bakers (SAMB).Many reported that the fair gave them an opportunity to build a closer relationship with Scot-tish customers.
British Sugar marketing operations manager Myra Hales commented: "The main purpose of coming to the show is to find out more about what Scottish bakers want and fill in any gaps in our relationship. Scotland is Tate & Lyle’s heartland, and we want to build our presence here."
Newsmith Stainless also took a stand at the show, manned by Oliver Douglas sales director Paul Woodhead. He said the show was an opportunity to reassure Oliver Douglas’ Scottish customers that it was business as usual, following the recent Newsmith acquisition of Oliver Douglas (British Baker, 18 August, pg 3).
Meanwhile, craft bakers at the show welcomed the fact that suppliers had travelled to see them. Browning’s the Bakers MD John Gall commented: "It is good to have this event in Scotland; it saves travelling to Birmingham or London, which is what we normally have to do when there is a show on. A show is the best place to find a new piece of equipment, which can take a full week if you invite different suppliers to the bakery to see you."
Meanwhile André Sarafilovic, MD of Wm Stephens in Dunferm-line, commented: "This is very good. It is great to see suppliers make the effort to be here."
SAMB chief executive Kirk Hunter said: "It has been an excellent show; we are pleased to see so many members here." The SAMB used the event to promote its plans for a Scottish bakery training centre, due to open in January on the site of retail and wholesale baker Mathieson’s new bakery.
SAMB past president, John Murray said the site would cater for theoretical and practical training, including bakery and computer skills. "We have always wanted something like this and we are delighted we have done it," he said.
Exhibitors also included Renshaw, Bakels, Fleming Howden, Advanced Food Equipment, Brook Food, Unifine, ADM Milling, Muntons, Puratos and Mono.