Free From Food/Functional Food Expo Returns In June With Even More Exhibitors
Free From Food/Functional Food Expo, Europe’s only dedicated showcase of free-from and functional food and drink, returns for 2016. Now in its fourth year, the show is set to feature an impressive line-up of exhibitors specialising in free-from products alongside speakers and new attractions.
With more producers than ever before, this year’s event, in Amsterdam on 9 and 10 June, also includes vegan, lactose-free and functional products, as well as dedicated UK, Finnish and Irish pavilions, and a functional food section.
This trade-only show is a specialist marketplace for buyers from the grocery retail and foodservice industry, as well as those representing specialist health, sport, organic and convenience stores looking for new and innovative free-from and functional ingredients and drinks.
Products on offer at the show will include those that are gluten-free, lactose-free, vegan, kosher, sugar-free, chemical-free and dairy-free, as well as protein supplements and much more.
The free-from category has enjoyed phenomenal growth across the UK in recent years. This is due to an explosion in new product development and availability, and increasing demand from consumers motivated by the search for a healthy lifestyle, rather than a medical need. Gluten- and dairy-free top the category when it comes to sales and new product development, but consumer interest in veganism and kosher diets is increasing.
New research from the experts at Mintel reveals that sales of free-from foods in the UK are forecast to grow 13 per cent to reach £531 million in 2016 – up from an estimated £470 million in 2015.
With more exhibitors than ever before, this year’s Free From Food/Functional Food Expo promises to offer a wealth of new and exciting food and drink products in ambient, chilled and frozen. The producers are drawn from across Europe, including the UK, Germany, Spain, Italy, Finland and the Netherlands.
UK exhibitors include Nak'd, Mrs Crimble's, Udi's Gluten Free, Rude Health, Nairn's Oatcakes, BFree, Big Oz, Green's Beers, Glebe Farm Foods, the American Muffin Co. Ltd and Moo Free Chocolates. European exhibitors include Fishmasters, Food for Life, Sweet Switch and Peak's Gluten Free. Ireland’s food board, Bord Bia, will also be present.
This year, the expo is extending into functional foods, which will have their own dedicated event. Functional foods are for consumers looking for additional benefits in their food and drink, such as probiotics and prebiotics, nutritional supplements, vitamins and sports nutrition. The market is growing fast, and functional foods are starting to emerge more and more on retail shelves, sitting alongside gluten-free products.
Lactose-free is also a growing market, particularly in the Nordic countries, as well as within Europe. There will be a dedicated lactose-free theatre at the show, sponsored by DSM Food Specialties, featuring experts in both the retail and health channels.
Industry experts and speakers will lead a series of conferences on the free-from and functional food categories throughout the two-day show. Innovation is also key to these growing sectors and will be celebrated during the event. All exhibitors are invited to enter their products into the Show Innovation Award, which is then voted by visitors. In 2015, the award was won by Irish brand Rule of Crumb for its Gluten-Free Chicken Kievs.
Ronald Holman, exhibition director, commented, "There are many reasons why businesses should choose to exhibit at Free From Food/Functional Food Expo 2016. The market for free-from food and drink and functional food continues to grow at a considerable rate, and buyers are looking to source more products and ingredients than ever before to meet this demand.
"This is a dedicated arena for suppliers and a fantastic opportunity for them to put their brands in front of the right people. We already have more exhibitors than ever before, which reflects just how much the category has to offer, and we look forward to welcoming more."
More information can be found here.
© 2016 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. To subscribe to ESM: The European Supermarket Magazine, click here.