Some of the biggest names in food-to-go are now confirmed to speak at this year’s lunch! trade show, which returns to the Business Design Centre in London next month.
Thanks to a 25 per cent increase in exhibition space for 2015, the multi-award-winning trade event will feature over 350 companies showcasing their latest food, drink, packaging, technological and equipment innovations to over 6,500 attendees.
The Working lunch! Theatre line-up includes Helen Higgins, food ambassador at EAT; Mark Palmer, group marketing director of Pret A Manger; Paul Ettinger, development director at Caffè Nero; Richard Morris, managing director of Tortilla; award winning designer Afroditi Krassa (who was commissioned by Julian Metcalfe to design the Itsu brand) and Roger Whiteside, CEO of food-to-go giant Greggs in an exclusive interview with Peter Martin, vice president of CGA Peach.
Guy Meakin, trading manager, food on the move at Marks & Spencer, will also be adding lunch! speaker duties to his impressive resumé. For him, and his fellow buyers, lunch! is the most important event of the year. His essential ‘Buying Masterclass’ will include top tips for food-to-go buyers.
Guy comments: “Each time I visit lunch! I’m reminded and energised about how exciting and market leading our industry is. Food-to-go is one of the fastest moving categories in the food industry, so pulling innovative and inspirational suppliers together each year for lunch! is a great way for us to keep up-to-date with developments and ensure we are at the forefront of improving our proposition for our customers.”
This year’s programme also includes panel sessions, which dissect and discuss current trends in travel catering, sustainability in food-to-go, and the challenges and opportunities facing independent operators. As in previous years, market updates from foodservice analyst Horizons and The NPD Group kick off the Working lunch! Theatre programme on both days of the show.
Cyril Lavenant, director of foodservice UK and France at The NPD Group, will discuss food-to-go trends around Europe from a consumer perspective, comparing the UK with France, Germany, Spain and Italy, and highlight the most promising growth areas in ‘on-the-go consumption’.
Emma Read, Horizon’s director of marketing and business development, meanwhile will be reviewing both the supply and the demand factors that are helping to drive the lunchtime market forwards. She’ll draw on the latest data from Horizons’ database of operators’ menus, and from new branded operator openings, to explain developments on the supply side; as well as using insight from the latest consumer panel to explain exactly what consumers are looking for.
Located in the new area of the Upper Feature Level, the theatre will play host to an exciting new series of master classes. The sessions with be led by industry experts and cover everything from coffee, tea, juicing, sandwich bars, street food and meat free options.
The event takes place at the Business Design Centre in Islington, London, on 24-25 September.