Shimmering with pastel colours and freshness, spring 2016 is all about having a few key staples in stock, to easily mirror the highlights of the season and maximise your sales.
Last week, retailers from all over Europe made their way to Birmingham’s NEC for the annual Spring Fair.
Spring Fair is the UK’s largest retail trade exhibition and where retailers go to get the low down on the latest trends while sourcing and re-stocking for the coming year. The Fair spans 14 different categories and launched a wapping 330,000 new products this year to an eager and ambitious audience. The biggest trend I saw? All things British!
Get ready to roll out the red carpet, the time is now for British brands and British products!!
Since way back when, even before that giant of an American greeting card company, ‘Hallmark’, first coined the phrase “…It’s that Hallmark time of year…,” the concept of there being key seasonal hallmarks of the retail calendar has permeated our high streets and influenced the way we shop.
Who knew that Halloween would become such a key date in the UK calendar for retailers? As a YANK myself, I was deeply moved if not to say moderately perplexed the day I first started seeing ‘Libby’s Pumpkin Pie’ showing up on local grocery store shelves in London, especially this past October. It would seem the “Hallmark” time of year knows no geographical bounds.
For years now, WBC has been a big supporter of the Guild of Fine Food. From our shared collaborations at the annual Speciality & Fine Food Fair and the Harrogate Fine Food shows, to our partnership in running the Guild Retail Cheese Training Courses in the WBC showroom; it goes without saying we love The Guild! So when I was asked by Director John Farrand to participate as a judge in this year in the World Cheese Awards I was honoured.
When asked by my photographer friend, Mark Weeks, if I wanted to attend a networking event held by the Radius business Group at The Royal Horseguards Hotel in London last night, I thought, how could I refuse?
After all, with my background in food and retail innovation as it pertains to technique, style and products, this opportunity was one I’d have been crazy to miss.
Because my background is in bakeries and kitchens, the term “mise en place” is one that is near and dear to my heart. Literally translated, mise en place means “putting in place” or “everything in its place” and while the origins of the words stem from the culinary world – a chef ensuring everything’s to hand before he begins; collating ingredients; positioning equipment tidily in order and in reach – the sentiment behind the phrase is applicable for every industry and business and you certainly can make it part of yours.
Glug, fizz, clink… You know we love it! Especially when it comes from our very own fair lands.
English Wine Week is back. A national celebration designed to raise awareness and appreciation for English wine, obviously. Because the fact is we’re producing more and more of the stuff, with some English vineyards taking on the world of bubbly! So it’s something to celebrate and a great opportunity (‘aka’ excuse) to boost your profits during the week.
Whatever type of retailer you are – independent wine merchant, delicatessen, hotel, pub, bar or restaurants, in fact if you’re just lucky enough to sell wine, then it’s easy to promote key product lines of wine and wine accessories simply by creating hot spots and well-merchandised in-store displays, and it’s a win win because you’ll be supporting the UK wine industry in the process.
Nestled in the coastal community of Hastings, Eat @ Ours boasts two cafes (Alexandra Park and The Stade) and a catering & event facility annexed to their company. At the helm of the business is Louise and Stephen Kelleher whose attention to detail with their food, space and retail display gives everyone something to notice.
Some weeks back Louise and Stephen received our new retail display and visual merchandising brochure, and flipped through the inspiration pages and started thinking about a new spring look for their business. From wholesale cakes stands, risers and POS signage to our popular modular display system – BRIX, the Kelleher’s were keen to make a splash! Take a look at what they’ve achieved.
Spring is just a breath away! If you have yet to set aside a little time to spring clean your retail space after Christmas or plan a space change or new look for the season – now is a great time to do so. With a number of upcoming seasonal events and awareness days throughout Spring: Mother’s Day, Butcher’s Week, British Pie week and National Gardening Week to name just a few, spring gives you the perfect excuse to dress a hot spot or create seasonally themed hampers that really give your sales a kick up the… Not like you ever need an excuse – a bit of change always invigorates and keeps customers inspired.
In this season’s Gerry Loves feature, I’ve picked 5 of my favourite WBC products for spring, let me know what you think and of course, if you have any questions or comments, tweet me @wbc_gerry or leave me a message below!
It’s touted as the annual trade fair where the UK hospitality industry comes together to network, listen, focus and source the very latest in food and drink, catering equipment, retail interiors and technology. With well over 250 exhibitors this year, The Hospitality Show at the NEC Birmingham is a must-attend event for any hotelier, restaurateur, publican, café or deli owner looking for new products and ideas for their business.
Miles of floor space dedicated to enthusiastic exhibitors demonstrating new and exciting innovative products for the trade. Whether you are a hotelier or a cocktail bar concept, every industry was present, all with their own unique take on how and what you might do differently to make customers feel that bit more special.