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Sunday, May 19, 2024

Show preview: IFE 2024

IFE, part of Food Drink & Hospitality Week, returns to ExCeL London on 25-27 March packed with innovative new products, insightful discussions and countless opportunities to network with industry peers.

For over 40 years, IFE has been a must-attend trade event for retailers, wholesalers, hospitality professionals and more to learn about the latest new trends and products in UK and international food & drink.

With 14 exciting food & drink zones to explore, including new additions in the form of the Cheese Pavilion, the Hot Beverage Pavilion and the Fresh Produce Section, in partnership with the Fresh Produce Consortium, there are countless products to taste and discover.

In addition to thousands of delectable products from across the UK, IFE has representation from over 100 countries around the world including pavilions from Turkey, Thailand, France, Sri Lanka, China, Ecuador, Hungary and Cyprus.

The Startup Market, home to up-and-coming businesses and inspiring food & drink entrepreneurs, will once again be a bustling hub of innovation at the heart of the show, while sections such as Speciality Food, Vegan & Plant-based and the Free From Pavilion will reflect some of the most important trends in the 2024 industry landscape.

This year’s event will also see the return of the New Products Tasting Theatre, where visitors to the show can hear live pitches from startups, attend live tastings and hear from companies including Bidfood and Sysco as part of the Distributor Discovery Hours.

On the Future Food stage, visitors will have the chance to hear from leading industry figures including retailers like Co-Op and Ocado, sustainability pioneers such as Abel & Cole, Rubies in the Rubble and innovative insight partners including Tried & Supplied, IGD, European Food and Farming Partnerships and Avocado Social.

Kelly Orme, Buying Manager- Community Buying at Co-op, who will be taking part in a panel titled ‘Navigating the startup scene: Advice from those in the know’, said: “Startups are an important source of innovation and fresh ideas in the food & drink industry. I’m looking forward to joining this panel at IFE 2024 and discussing how retailers can support and mentor suppliers as they scale and further develop their product ranges.”

Ed Ayton, Sustainability & Ethics Advisor to Abel & Cole and panellist on the session, ‘Sustainability pioneers: Global food and drink companies setting the standard’, added: “Our team always comes back from IFE buzzing with new ideas and networks, so I’m delighted to taking part and supporting the programme this year.”

Day two of the show will see IGD curate a fascinating day of content on the Future Food stage, with sessions covering everything from economic forecasts for food & drink retail, sustainability, health, learnings international retail and an exclusive case study with a key client of IGD.

Sarah Baldock, Marketing and Communications Director at IGD, said: “Our combined team of retail, shopper, health, sustainability and economics experts look forward to helping delegates get closer to the UK market within an international context, and our exhibition stand on the show floor will offer a space for those vital one-on-one conversations. We’re delighted to be partnering with IFE this year to help delegates get the most out of their visit. We look forward to seeing you there!”

IFE takes place alongside IFE Manufacturing, The Pub Show, HRC and International Salon Culinaire as part of Food, Drink & Hospitality Week, the UK’s biggest celebration of industry innovation. To learn more about everything happening this year, and to register for your complimentary trade ticket, visit ife.co.uk.

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