In This Issue
More would visit garden centres if coffee was better says survey
Through the customer’s eyes
Keeping it in the West Country with new restaurant build
Glee Food & Catering Zone helping garden retailers grow profits
Fenland Breakfast Sandwich is the latest entry for The Greatest Breakfast Sandwich Award
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New drinks, packaging and equipment innovations set to hit the market at lunch! 2014
How Garden Centres win the Coffee Shop War
Family run business will deliver inspiring environments
Online bread company Bread Du Jour officially launched
GTN Food Xtra Sits Vac
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More would visit garden centres if coffee was better says survey
New research suggests that one in three people would visit a garden centre more often if the quality of coffee was better...

New research suggests that one in three people would visit a garden centre more often if the quality of coffee was better.

The survey of 1,100 UK consumers by Glee exhibitors UCC Coffee UK & Ireland, found that quality is also the most important factor for consumers when deciding whether or not to buy coffee at a garden centre. After quality, the coffee shop environment, speed of service, price and ethical accreditations influence people’s decision to purchase the most.

The results showed that a good café or coffee shop is key to getting consumers through the doors, with 32% of consumers visiting a garden centre to both browse and visit a coffee shop on their last visit.

Grabbing a coffee at a garden centre is becoming increasingly popular, with 25% of people saying they purchased a coffee there in the last three to four weeks. In fact, one in ten said they only went to visit the coffee shop or café.

Phil Smith, UCC’s category manager, says coffee now makes up 87% of all hot beverage sales in garden centres. “Our research has revealed that it is more important to the consumers’ experience at garden centres than any other leisure destination, including art galleries, museums farm shops and visitor attractions,” he said. Four out of ten consumers now expected great quality coffee in garden centres, giving operators a huge opportunity to drive revenue and repeat business.

Other results showed that the primary reason for buying a hot beverage is “functional”, with 26% of coffee consumers needing a refreshment. But, almost half (49%) of hot beverage purchases at garden centres are indulgences – relaxation (22%), taking a break from shopping (21%) and meeting friends (15%).

When it comes to the most popular coffees, cappuccino comes out on top (23%) with latte (21%) and americano (17%) completing the top three.

The research of 1,100 coffee drinking consumers was commissioned by UCC Coffee UK & and conducted by Allegra Insight in August 2014. UCC Coffee UK & Ireland surveys consumers each quarter to keep its customers up-to-date with the latest market trends and provide insight to add value to their customers’ businesses.

Through the customer’s eyes

The most successful restaurants will have identified the best views, locations and opportunities to maximise your outdoor seating with a sunny aspect...

Each week Catering Design Group, one of the UK’s leading restaurant and commercial catering design companies, provides readers of GTN Food Xtra with a range of solutions, hints and tips around the theme: “Are you wise to the value of good design!”

This weeks topic is:  “Through the customer’s eyes

A designer will look at your space to ascertain if the restaurant location is obvious, easy to find and in the right location.

What’s the view like and are you capitalising on seasonal sunshine?

The most successful restaurants will have identified the best views, locations and opportunities to maximise your outdoor seating with a sunny aspect.

Your customers won’t want to linger over a coffee and cake looking at the service yard!

The customer journey starts the moment the customer walks into your garden centre or farm shop. 

But it doesn’t just stop with the restaurant or café space, are all opportunities en-route to the restaurant to upsell being capitalised on within the retail zone?

To find out more, contact Catering Design Group at:


Keeping it in the West Country with new restaurant build
Monkton Elm Garden & Pet Centre is aiming to keep the majority of the building work for its new restaurant with small to medium-sized businesses from the West Country rather than employing construction firms from further afield...

Monkton Elm Garden & Pet Centre is aiming to keep the majority of the building work for its new restaurant with small to medium-sized businesses from the West Country rather than employing construction firms from further afield... 

The Somerset Garden Centre is expanding its Four Seasons Restaurant and is handling key components of the build in-house as well as sub-contracting to professionals and craftspeople in the Westcountry.

Mike Lind, Managing Director of the garden centre at Monkton Heathfield in Taunton, said: “The key jobs will be undertaken by Project Manager, Steve Butterworth, however there are some jobs, such as electrics, plumbing and woodwork, which we will be sub-contracting to other businesses.

“We’re committed to the local community and we’re keen to keep as much of the work as we can within the Westcountry. We will be sub-contracting to organisations and craftspeople from the area.

“Two of the main contractors appointed are from Taunton. REF Electrics Ltd are the electrical contractors and Heat Radiation Ltd are the mechanical contractors. We have appointed Bartlett of Exeter who will be handling the procurement and installation of the kitchen equipment together with the front of house counters, joinery and internal fit out. We have also continued to work on-site with MBH Industrial Services Ltd on all gas works. These appointments confirm our commitment to work with local businesses.”

The new restaurant, due to open in spring 2015, will seat 350 and the food will continue to be prepared by chefs on-site in a brand new kitchen facility.

The 950 square metre development is approximately double the size of the current restaurant.

The garden centre team hopes to create more than 10 new jobs across the whole business, which already employs around 90 staff.

Mike, who took over as Managing Director two years ago is the son-in-law of the founders David and Luella Bellman. The Bellmans, who are now retired, and their three children still play an active part in the garden centre’s development.

Mike added: “David and Luella first started offering visitors refreshments in 1989. Their aim was to have a real emphasis on fresh, locally produced food cooked daily on-site and the same will apply with our new restaurant once launched.

“There is much to look forward to but as we embark on our new restaurant development, we do anticipate some disruption and we apologise for this. However, we are creating a vibrant new space for our customers to enjoy when they visit in the future and it’s something we think the short-term upheaval will more than make up for.

“In the meantime, our current restaurant space will still be operational, albeit with a reduced number of tables, for teas, coffees, cakes, snacks, breakfasts and lunches, and our wonderful Pondside Café will also be open too for everything apart from breakfasts and the larger lunches.”

Visit for more information on the garden centre.

Pictured: Project Manager, Steve Butterworth, who will be overseeing the new restaurant build.

Glee Food & Catering Zone helping garden retailers grow profits
Now in its third year, the Food & Catering Zone will be bigger than ever, and will be a rich resource for any retailer wanting to expand their catering facilities.  Key brands to look out for include Cafeology, Belvoir Fruit Farms, GMS Expresso, Vision Commercial Kitchens, Bon Bon (Wholesale) Ltd, English Garden Tea, eXpresso Plus, Horti Catering Equipment, Moonshine Drinks, NBTY Europe, The Victorian Kitchen, Tudor Tea & Coffee and UCC Coffee...

With catering and food sales continuing to offer major add-on profit opportunities for garden centres, leading garden trade show Glee (14 – 16 September, NEC Birmingham) organised by i2i Events Group, will be offering retailers extensive inspiration at a more prominent Food & Catering Zone this year. Sponsored by experts, Catering Design Group and Blue Cap Coffee (Lavazza), this area gives garden retailers an unrivalled opportunity to gather best practice examples, advice, contacts and products to help them initiate or improve their catering offering.

Now in its third year, the Food & Catering Zone will be bigger than ever, and will be a rich resource for any retailer wanting to expand their catering facilities.  In addition to the wide range of catering services, confectionary, kitchen equipment, kitchenware and café/restaurant design consultancy specialists that have made their home within this dedicated area in recent years, retailers will also find additional inspiration to explore within the newly introduced Farmers Market.  Home to artisan suppliers, the Farmers Market will be packed with everything from locally sourced brands to specialist produce as well as delicious food and drinks from an exciting mix of catering innovators.

The Food & Catering Zone will also address key issues with an unrivalled workshop programme.  This year topics up for discussion include seasonal events and marketing strategies to attract customers year-round, how garden centres can win the coffee shop ‘wars’, attracting younger customers to your on-site catering, supply chain efficiency and much more. Speakers will include Helen MacDonald, owner of Merryhatton Garden Centre, Iain Wylie, Chief Executive of The Garden Centre Association, Tracey Fletcher, owner of Kitchen Garden, Will Armitage, MD of Armitages Garden and Home, Helen Pyttlik, garden centre manager, Bicester Avenue Garden Centre, and John Williams, director of Blue Cap Coffee. 

Another name to add to the already impressive ‘who’s who’ list of experts is Unilever Food Solutions, one of the world’s leading food companies that owns many well-known brands such as Knorr, Hellman’s, Colman’s, Flora and Stork. Its passion for understanding what people want and need from food make its brands a trusted part of people’s lives. Unilever will undoubtedly play a significant part at this year’s show, as it will be addressing the changes to the Food Labelling and Allergen Legislation which are due to come into force in December.

With more exhibitors than ever before the Food & Catering Zone will be an exciting showcase.  Key brands to look out for include Cafeology, Belvoir Fruit Farms, GMS Expresso, Vision Commercial Kitchens, Bon Bon (Wholesale) Ltd, English Garden Tea, eXpresso Plus, Horti Catering Equipment, Moonshine Drinks, NBTY Europe, The Victorian Kitchen, Tudor Tea & Coffee and UCC Coffee.

Phillip Howard, Managing Director, Catering Design Group, one of the area’s 2014 sponsors comments: “We’re delighted to be returning to Glee and proud to be one of the partners of the Food & Catering Zone in 2014. We’ll be bringing along our great team of experts across design, kitchen planning and project management to give visitors advice and answer any questions they may have. We’ll also be sharing an abundance of hints, tips, trends and insights to enable visitors to create a destination catering space.”

i2i’s Matthew Mein, Glee event manager added: “This year’s Food & Catering Zone is set to be the best yet! The area will not only be bigger and packed full of even more exhibitors than ever before, but with the guidance of our new sponsors and with the hugely valuable feedback of the recent Food & Catering Steering Group, we have been able to develop a programme that is as targeted and hard working as possible.”

Food & Catering ExhibitorsStand No
Belvoir Fruit Farms Ltd17V48-10
Blue Cap Coffee17U51
Bon Bons (Wholesale) Ltd17T56
Cafeology Limited17S58
Catering Design Group17U26-V25
Clarence & Bean17V48-2
Creed Foodservice17T50, 17V48-4
English Garden Tea17S62
eXpresso plus17S52
Glebe Farm Gluten Free17V48-1
GMS Espresso17R65
Horti Catering Equipment Ltd17P30-Q31
Moonshine Drinks Limited20F54
NBTY Europe17T55
The Original Manx Fudge Factory17T51
The Victorian Kitchen17S50
Tudor Tea & Coffee Ltd17U60
UCC Coffee UK & Ireland17T53
Vision Commercial Kitchens17U50
Fenland Breakfast Sandwich is the latest entry for The Greatest Breakfast Sandwich Award

Cafe Skylark at Skylark Garden Centre, near March, serves approximately thirty of the sandwiches (which have a Royal twist) every week and are a firm favourite on the menu...

We are searching for The Greatest Garden Centre Breakfast Sandwich.  

If you think your breakfast sandwiches are up to the test and worthy of The Greatest Breakfast Sandwich Award send me an e-mail and a photo.

Over the next few months we'll publish your breakfast sandwich pictures and hopefully come along and try them for ourselves.

This week we recievd the entry above from Skylark Garden Centre near March in the Cambridgeshire Fens.

Bart Woodbine, Food & Marketing Manager, told GTN Food Xtra "I would like to put forward our entry, the Fenland Breakfast Sandwich. We use fresh bread delivered daily from Smiths the Bakers in King's Lynn (bakers to the queen when HRH is in residence at Sandringham), sausage & bacon from a local butcher, Brian Tweed in Upwell, Fenland's finest field mushrooms and eggs from our local wholesaler. 

"The sandwich is the snack alternative to our renowned Fenland Breakfast, although I think you'll agree it is quite a mouthful!  We serve approximately thirty of the sandwiches every week in our award winning Cafe Skylark and are a firm favourite on our menu. 

 "It may not be the prettiest but it definitely will satisfy an appetite! "

Thank you Bart.  After Glee we'll make sure we come over and give Fenlands finest a taste test.

If you think your breakfast sandwiches are up to the test and worthy of The Greatest Breakfast Sandwich Award send me an e-mail and a photo.

Over the next few months we'll publish your breakfast sandwich pictures and hopefully come along and try them for ourselves.

Email with the subject The Greatest Breakfast Sandwich.

Here's a couple more of the entries received to date:

This entry is from Busy Bee Garden Centre on the Isle of Wight:

Breakfast club sandwich from Busy Bee Garden Centre. Toast, bacon, sausage, hash brown, Portobello mushroom, toast, fried egg, beans, and toast.

And here's the sandwich that started our search from The Baytree Garden Centre Coffee Shop. Bacon and Stilton toasted breakfast sandwich.

If you think your breakfast sandwiches are up to the test and worthy of The Greatest Breakfast Sandwich Award send me an e-mail and a photo.

Over the next few months we'll publish your breakfast sandwich pictures and hopefully come along and try them for ourselves.

Email with the subject The Greatest Breakfast Sandwich.

Editor required
Were looking for an editor for GTN Food Xtra...
Were looking for an editor for GTN Food Xtra.

If you have an interest Garden Centre Catering and Food retailing and you have a proven journalistic track record then you could be the new editor of GTN Food Xtra.

Now a regular source of useful information for everyone invloved in garden centre catering and food retailing we are now looking for an editor to take this weekly e-mail newsletter forward.

The position could be either full time or part time and will be based at our offices in Eye near Peterborough.

Send your CV with an e-mail to stating why you should be considered for this new position.

Tuesday 23rd September marks the return of the multi-award-winning lunch! trade show to the Business Design Centre in Islington, London.  With its focus on new innovations from across the food-to-go sector, this popular two-day event has garnered a loyal following among thousands of buyers from across the UK’s retailing, hospitality, snacking, convenience, and catering sectors.

The following is just a taste of some of the exciting new innovations – including beverages, food and drink packaging, foodservice equipment and technology solutions – being introduced at this year’s event.

  • Beverages

INVO Coconut Water (stand U105) returns to lunch! this year for the true freshly-cracked coconut water experience.  INVO is the world's first coconut water to be cracked, bottled and HPPed all at source, keeping all the taste and nutrients that heat pasteurising usually removes.  New flavours launching at the show include INVO Coconut Water with tropical juice and INVO Coconut Water with green tea.

Jax Coco (stand U212) is a 100% pure, naturally isotonic coconut water drink sourced from coconuts in the Philippines and Hainan.  Made using a micro-filtering process to ensure a smooth taste, it is low in calories with just 18-24 per 100ml (compared to 48 cals per 100ml of orange juice).  New flavours – natural chocolate and banana – will be launching exclusively at lunch.

O-Me Good Juice Bar (stand IZ 15) is exhibiting its new healthy smoothies and raw vegetable juice with boosters and super boosters that help detox, burn off fat, and boost energy.  New green juices include Green Goddess (also known as the ultimate detox); Lean Green with Kale; and Veggie green.

The star of Matthew Algie’s lunch! offering this year (stand M110) is the new 2014 Winter Catalogue from its sister brand, Espresso Warehouse.  Containing a number of new seasonal drinks, visitors will be introduced to exciting flavour combinations including Caramel Crunch Cappuccino, Nutty Caramel Latte and Mulled Spiced Chai Latte, all of which can be personalised with tempting toppings and sauces.  For ethical consumers on the go, Matthew Algie is also launching its reusable KeepCup.

New exhibitor GrantCaffè – Dutch Artisan Coffee (stand U223) is launching its coffee brand on to the UK market at lunch!.  The range includes espresso blends, single origin espressos and exclusive single origin espressos.  They will also be showcasing GrantCaffè Premium Tea Leaves range and in-house produced, fully automated table-top bean-2-cup espresso machines, especially designed for smaller retailers.

teapigs (stand M530) is showcasing its new grab-and-go super power matcha green tea drinks that launched this summer.  A perfect healthy addition to chiller cabinets, each drink contains a full 1 gram serving of teapigs matcha, blended with fruit juice and natural spring water, all inside a 330ml Tetra Pak carton.

The Sassy Drinks Company Ltd (stand IZ-27) is launching its innovative new feisty soft drink Sass™ at lunch!.  Sass™ brings together apple, passion fruit, blood orange and grape juice, infused with chilli, cardamom, clove, ginger, juniper, liquorice and sarsaparilla.  Sass™ offers an uplifting spicy yet refreshing drink experience at any time of the day.

Rebel Kitchen (stand IZ-7) has recently launched a range of dairy-free mylks, available in six cheeky flavours (Choco, Banana, Orange Choc, Chocolate, Chai, and Matcha Green Tea).  The drinks are made with hydrating coconut milk blended with pure spring water and organic date nectar for sweetness.

Following successful launches in 2014 with Waitrose, Virgin Trains and Booths, first time exhibitor Brew Tea Company (stand A312) is launching its new ¼lb Loose Leaf Tea boxes and discussing how food to go operators can be better at adding value to the growing speciality tea category.

Tapping into consumer demand for healthier drinks, enhance drinks (stand IZ-01) is launching an innovative range of portable water enhancers.  They contain real fruit juice, are only one calorie per drink, and available in four flavours (Orange & Passion Fruit, Lemon & Lime, Strawberry & Kiwi, and Apple & Blackcurrant).  enhance comes in space efficient, shelf ready packs, which are designed to be easily located beside operators’ tills, helping drive additional impulse sales.

Balcony Tea is bringing a taste of the Mediterranean to lunch!, with its new range of artisan teas and herbal infusions (stand IZ-11).  Launched earlier this year, the company uses ethically sourced ingredients, such as Greek Mountain Tea, Wild Thyme, Olive Leaves, Lemon Balm, and Linden Flower, to form eight distinctive tea blends.  Available in boxes of 15 pyramids, which are fully bio-degradable, or loose tea pouches (50g).

Folkington’s Juices (stand M541) is launching a new variety into its existing stable of eight.  It’s called ‘Best of British Summer Berries’ and is made from a blend of juices from British grown raspberries, strawberries and blackcurrants.  Available in cases of 12 x 250ml glass bottles.

lunch! visitors will be among the first to experience the new 'naturalee' refreshing drink from Simplee Aloe drinks (stand IZ-23).  Made with real fruit juice and rich in vitamins, it is packed with goodness and is surprisingly tasty.

With the fruit and herbal tea market growing by 7.4% last year and health remaining a key consumer driver, Taylors of Harrogate’s fruit and herbal tea range, authenticated by the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, is a must stock for operators.  Visitors who stop by the tea urn (stand M140) will get to sample Taylors’ best-selling Sweet Rhubarb, winter-warming Spiced Apple and citrusy Lemongrass & Ginger.

Vita Coco Coconut Water (stand M322) has extended its core 330ml range with a Lemonade variant.  Vita Coco Lemonade (made from 100% natural coconut water mixed with fresh tasting lemon fruit puree) contains less sugar and has lower calories than other leading UK chilled still lemonades.  Their coconut water comes from young green coconuts and is full of naturally occurring potassium and essential electrolytes.

Radnor Hills (stand G16) is exhibiting its refreshing Heartsease Farm premium pressé range, which reflects the heritage of the farm in Mid-Wales and the company’s passion for great flavours.  The drinks – including its recently launched Fiery Ginger Beer – are made using only the best available ingredients from the countryside, blended with Heartsease Farm’s own spring water, to traditional British recipes.

eteaket Tea (stand A218) has introduced new packaging for its range of award winning loose leaf teas for retail, and added two new teas to its leaf tea bag range – Chilli Rooibos and Chilllaxin' Chamomile.  Tea cocktails, cold press tea, iced tea, tea beers and many more tea innovations will also be showcased at lunch!.

New exhibitor Sansu Drinks (stand IZ-19) is the first consumer brand outside Asia to launch a Yuzu fruit drink.  Yuzu is a rare supercitrus that carries hints of mandarin, lime and grapefruit, with unique floral undertones.  Yuzu has multiple times the Vitamin C of an orange and is packed with antioxidants.  Available in three distinct flavours: Yuzu & Blueberry, Yuzu & Strawberry and Yuzu & Pear.

First launched in 2013, the award winning CocoMojo (stand G21) has undertaken a re-launch with three unique flavours and a radical new look!  The CocoMojo drinks range combines the remarkable health benefits of coconut water, coconut milk, tropical fruits and botanical herbs.  Variants include CocoSoul; CocoPassion; and CocoPure – 100% pure coconut water made from young, green coconuts from Thailand.

JOOLS (stand U218a) is a new healthy green tea and super fruit drink with nutrient rich popping beads (jools).  All drinks are made in the EU, using the finest handpicked ingredients and are full of antioxidants and vitamins – with one bottle offering 100% RDA of 8 vitamins.  The jools nestled at the bottom of the bottle are packed full of flavour and explode in the mouth to release a taste sensation (less than 90 calories per bottle).

UCC Coffee UK & Ireland – the total coffee solution provider – is showcasing everything operators need to create a profitable coffee offer at lunch! (stand A407).  Its team of specialist baristas will be showing off market-leading machines from Eversys and Nuova Simonelli and brewing single origin coffee and blends from its THREESIXTY° range.

New healthy soft drinks brand Smug Drinks (stand IZ-03) is the brainchild of young Yorkshire entrepreneur Max Jones, who first came up with the concept while at university after realising the popularity of antioxidants and vitamins among students, plus a gap in the market.  The result is that each of Smug Drink’s four antioxidant packed variants has 100% RDA of three important B vitamins in every bottle.

Luscombe Organic Drinks (stand M327) has been making beautiful drinks since 1975.  Their drinks are crafted from quality ingredients, sourced direct from trusted growers.  This ensures that they get the best possible produce, grown to the highest standards.  New Passionate Ginger Beer is no exception and definitely worth putting to the test at lunch!.

Maynard House Orchards (stand M547), the award-winning Suffolk apple juice producer, teamed up with one of the best citrus fruit growers in Valencia, to launch Maynard House Orange and Clementine Juice earlier this year.  This smooth juice, which contains no pulp and no additives, is available in 200ml bottles.

10 Degrees C Ltd – Dr Martins Organic Green Coco Juice (stand M128) is naturally hydrating and the ideal beverage for sport, fitness and general wellbeing.  It is produced from 100% organically grown and certified coconuts (and only from young green coconuts).  New PET and Kids formats will be on show at lunch!.

Koyu Matcha Green Tea (stand U104) is bringing its potent, new matcha green tea lattes to the show.  Tipped as the next big healthy beverage trend, matcha boasts 137 times the antioxidants of regular green tea.  Already incredibly successful in Ireland, one of their customers sells 700 of these per week from one small café.

PIP Organic (stand M242) has recently launched a new range of Cold Pressed Organic juices, which are perfect for all of the family.  The new fresh 750ml bottle range addition includes cloudy apple juice, apple with cherry and fresh orange juice (made from 100% organic fruit).  PIP Organic Cold Pressed juices are using the latest HPP technology mitigating the need for pasteurisation and retaining an orchard fresh taste.

Are you planning to open a coffee shop?  Does your coffee shop or hotel need staff training on improving hot beverage service?  Do you need to find out the latest in coffee equipment and technology?  Find out the answers by visiting the Beverage Standards Association (BSA) at lunch! (stand A103).

  • Packaging

Eco-friendly tableware supplies company Little Cherry (stand A200)is introducing its new biodegradable natural coconut shell bowls this year.  Durable, robust and reusable, they can be used in the oven, freezer and dishwasher.  The half shell bowl measures 5" long by 3" wide by 2" deep and are sold in packs of 10 for £8.99.  Also showing: new pizza plates, platters for sushi and canapés, and new shapes and sizes of bowls from its Palm Leaf tableware range.

The Heated Line from ELLER foodPackaging GmbH (stand IZ-6) is a new packaging range approved for safe use in hot cabinets according to EU-standards.  Launching at lunch!, all products are made from recyclable materials and were specifically designed for the grab-and-go market.  Additional features, such as tear-off perforation and self-seal ability, provide customers with an added benefit.

Packnwood (stand M212) is showcasing its new range of street food packaging – kraft cardboard boats for fish & chips, hot dog trays, newspaper style deli containers for salads and soups, paper cones, wrap cups and more.

Eco packaging and labelling experts Planglow (stand G9) is demonstrating its fully Food Information Regulation (FIR) compliant labelling software: LabelLogic and NutriLogic.  Having received updates ahead of new food labelling laws that come into effect this December, the software – plus new label designs – ensure producing legislatively compliant labelling remains a simple and speedy process.  Planglow is also showcasing a wide range of new grab and go products developed specifically to support deli-style and street-food offerings.  This includes a brand new collection especially for hot foods.

Tri-Star Packaging (stand M101) will be wowing lunch! visitors with ground-breaking new concepts, including trendy deli pots range Tri-Pot™, that offers superb on-shelf presentation to help food-to-go retailers add more ‘zing’ to their takeaway offer, and clever one-fingered drinks carrier Handle-It, which enables customers to carry drinks when their hands are full.

Eco friendly packaging company Biopac UK (stand M543) is launching new Take Home Boxes, branded 'Too Good To Waste'.  They are designed to help cafes and restaurants reduce their food waste by encouraging diners to take their leftovers home to enjoy later.  Functional and sustainable, they can be fully composted when they've reached their end of life, so very kind to the environment.

Celebrating 50 years in business, Reynards UK’s stand (M312) at lunch! will be filled with an array of food-to-go products.  These include salad containers, Tamper Evident containers, cellophane block bottom bags, disposable hot and cold cups, window bags, SOS bags, soup containers, as well as its range of completely compostable packaging.

RAP (stand M318) is showcasing two of its industry-leading products: AirRap™ and HandRap™.  AirRap™ takes hot food-to-go from manufacture, to oven, display, and finally to the consumer, using a single piece of packaging.  HandRap™ is a bespoke product for hot and cold food-to-go products, offering complete flexibility.  Both products save operators time, money and optimise food safety.

One of the world’s leading manufacturers of multi-format packaging solutions, Coveris (stand M410) is showcasing its first combined offering since the acquisition of St Neots Packaging this year, which includes paper board, rigid and semi rigid plastic packaging, labels and film.

Benders Paper Cups (stand M114) is showcasing its new Garda Embossed Insulated Cup at this year’s lunch!, alongside its complete range of market leading paper hot cups.  The UK’s only dedicated paper hot cups manufacturer, Benders will exhibit a full selection of iconic stock designs from its single wall and insulated ranges.

Tri-Label (stand M101) is gearing up to make a huge splash with Tri-Label Online, the award-winning, cloud-based labelling software solution that’s revolutionising the way food-to-go operators create and print labels.  Fully-compliant with the new food labelling regulations, Tri-Label Online is a ground-breaking system that enables caterers to print eye-catching labels with ease.

  • Equipment & Technology

CRÈME BRÛLÉE – an exciting new hot beverage concept from Fairtrade Beverage Systems is being launched at this year’s show (stand IZ-02).  Visitors can sample this new sensation of the classic dessert as a culinary hot drink.  It can also be served iced or as a frappé.

The Coffee Machine Company (stand M121) is demonstrating two new machines at lunch! this year.  The new Classe 11 Flag Ship Traditional Espresso Machine from world renowned Rancilio, and the new Egro Zero entry level Bean To Cup Machine, which is suitable for applications of 100 coffees per day.

Phat Pasty Co (stand A213) is launching Phat Soup, an innovative and unique concept for this year’s lunch!.  The Soup Server provides a self serve soup offer, with up to 12 hours hot holding.  Soups are nutritious and supplied in ambient pouches.  The operator has full HACCP read outs and a self-clean system.

Newly launched eXpresso PLUS (stand U103) offers a fresh alternative to the UK Coffee2Go market.  With a complete range of solutions on offer and partnerships with global leading brands (including LavAzza, Nescafé, PG tips, Clipper and more), eXpresso PLUS offers a customised hot drinks solution.

Unilever’s tea experts have developed Tea Fusion; a revolutionary way to serve a perfectly brewed cup of loose leaf tea.  Tea leaves ‘dance’ in the machine’s brewing chamber, guaranteeing the ideal balance between water temperature, brewing time and movement (stand A105).  The 12-strong range of teas and infusions are hand-picked and sealed in air-tight capsules, to complement the brewing process.  Outlets offering Tea Fusion have experienced double-digit growth on their volume and value tea sales.

Glen Dimplex Professional Appliances (stand M331) is demonstrating the latest in display refrigeration, with its new Lec Commercial bottle cooler range (available in single, double or triple door variants).  The powerful Titan Commercial 6-burner range cooker, and Burco’s popular range of innovative Auto-fill filtration boilers will also be on show.

Alan Nuttall is showcasing its range of patented flexible foodservice systems (stand G11).  The Flexeserve® Intelligent Chassis Counter System is a unique series of flexible link and lock modular counters, which can link a multiple number of modules from a single 32amp 3 phase supply, with an extensive range of heated, chilled or ambient Flexeserve® drop-in displays.

Manitowoc Foodservice (standM336) is exhibiting the new eikon® e4s from Merrychef, which has been designed to meet the demanding needs of high throughput foodservice operators.  The eikon e4s targets operators who are looking to reduce cook times, cut operating costs, and enhance their store environment with a quicker, quieter, and more energy-efficient rapid-cooking oven.

Rational UK’s new SelfCookingCenter 5 Senses (stand M115) is going to be put through its paces at lunch!, as chefs show how the new combi-steamer can cook everything from pies to pizza to pasta, from burgers to chips, even a full English breakfast – all at the touch of a button, and all with perfect results.

EPOSability (stand A300) specialises in providing, delivering and supporting IT solutions and professional services for the hospitality industry.  They have partnered with the world’s leading hardware and software vendors, and together have delivered many large projects for SME's through to large FTSE 250 companies.

orderbird AG (stand U112) is showcasing its multi-awarded iPad POS system.  orderbird saves caterers time, money, and stress – allowing them to focus on what is really important: their guests.  orderbird customers’ say that the EPOS saves them 1¾ hours a week and boosts profits by 10%, thanks to increased efficiency and operational improvements.

lunch! 2014, taking place on 23-24 September at the Business Design Centre in Islington, London, will feature 300 exhibiting companies showcasing food and drink products, packaging, equipment and technology solutions.  Show features include the Working lunch! Keynote Theatre, Innovation Challenge Live, Innovation Challenge Showcase, and the British Smoothie Championships.

To register for a free trade pass, please visit and quote priority code PR (direct link:

How Garden Centres win the Coffee Shop War
Words of advice for any garden retailers wanting to add catering and or a coffee shop to their centre from Blue Cap Coffee...

With the Food & Catering Zone making its third consecutive appearance at this year’s show, Glee welcomes onboard Blue Cap Coffee as one of the official sponsors.

The internationally acclaimed brand will be on hand to provide garden retailers an unrivalled opportunity to gather best practice examples, advice, contacts and products to help them initiate or improve their catering offering.  GTN Food Xtra caught up with the connoisseurs of the perfect Italian espresso’s MD, John Williams, to find out more about them and their much anticipated presence at this year’s show.

Can you give us a short overview of your business and general offering?

Blue Cap Coffee is a recognised supplier of the Lavazza BLUE Concept, an exclusive system which enables garden centre cafes and restaurants to offer an authentic Italian coffee experience.  Lavazza BLUE consists of a series of machines and capsules, both created from Lavazza’s century of passion for espresso. The innovative extraction method and sealed single-dose capsules guarantee a real Italian espresso anytime, anywhere to deliver creamy, fragrant perfection.

What can people expect to see from you during the show?

Over the past year, we’ve increased the number of garden centres we supply. We’ve discovered that the capsule concept is particularly successful in an environment that doesn’t require a specialist barista but still demands a quality offering. There’s already significant interest in the Blue Cap offering which we’re hoping to build on. Feedback from our first, Hillview Garden Centre Group, has been overwhelmingly positive and our experience with other garden centres means we should be able to generate even more interest.  

At Glee 2014, we’ll have our machines on display at the stands and one machine producing coffee in the Food & Catering Zone. I will be giving a presentation on “How Garden Centres win the Coffee Shop War” which will be a must-see for all garden retailers who want to find out how to maximise their café culture in-store..

What words of advice do you have for any garden retailers wanting to add catering and or a coffee shop to their centre?

In speaking to our existing customers, the two words that crop up time and time again are quality and consistency. There are a myriad of factors that contribute to success – friendly staff, comfortable seating and good décor, for example. Regular customers like to feel ‘ownership’ of their favourite coffee shop – the space should reflect the same qualities that they value in their garden centre. Great, healthy looking plants, guaranteed quality and professional advice easily translate to food and drink that is attractive, consistently good quality and service from helpful people.

What are the biggest challenges for retailers adding a coffee shop to their business? What are the common mistakes made?

Firstly, make sure you choose the location carefully – the space should be attractive, easily accessible, light and welcoming. Don’t spend so much on construction and décor that there’s nothing left when it comes to stocking quality drinks and food.

Secondly, if you are anticipating young families visiting, it may be worth having a seating area with a selection of toys or a books area to make your coffee shop family friendly, without alienating other customers who may prefer a quieter, child-free experience.

Thirdly, establish how many customers per hour you want to serve at your top capacity – then check that your staff and coffee machines are able to manage that.

Fourthly, hire staff that have the right approach to customer service, are enthusiastic, willing and able to be trained.

I’d also suggest using a number of part-time workers so you can offer flexible job shifts to tie in with busy times in the café. On an added note, don’t have long, very complicated menus. Keep it simpler by focusing on quality and consistency of products.    

Are there any particular trends that you’ve noticed regarding coffee shops within garden centres? Fair trade or locally sourced for example?

In terms of ethically sourced products, these are expected as standard by customers nowadays, who also expect a great taste and quality of coffee served quickly and consistently. This however isn’t always the case and is often an area of concern for both restaurant managers and customers.  

It’s fair to say that the trend for coffee shops in garden centres in general has dramatically shifted over the past few years. Garden centres are now becoming destinations and leisure attractions in their own right for old and young consumers alike – it’s not just a place to purchase plants from anymore. Typically, just 40% of floor space is now dedicated to plants and garden related items, with successful cafes and restaurants contributing up to 50% of turnover. Allegra forecasts the total UK coffee shop market will exceed 20,500 outlets with a turnover of £8.7 billion by 2018, with 4.5% annual outlet growth over the five-year period. That’s incredible!   

To find out the latest show news log onto or see The Glee Daily News

Blue Cap Coffee at Glee 2014.  Stand 17U51.

Family run business will deliver inspiring environments
Catering Design Group are a sponsor of the Food and Catering Zone at Glee this weekend.  Here’s a spotlight on the company...

Catering Design Group are a sponsor of the Food and Catering Zone at Glee this weekend.

Here’s a spotlight on the company...

About Us

CDG is a family run business which has grown organically over the past 24 years to become one of the UK’s leading hospitality design companies.  We offer a full design service to our clients within garden centres and farm shops, together with those in the retail, leisure, business and education sectors.

We are more than just a design company.  We are a great team of talented and creative people who are passionate about every project we undertake. Over the years we’ve continually strengthened our team and now each arm of the business is headed up by experienced and highly qualified individuals, whose specialisms include: Design Consultancy, Conceptual Design, Kitchen Design, Interior Design, Retailing, Equipment, Fixtures & Furnishing, Project Management and Construction & Fit-out.  And, to ensure we’re always in the know, we take real pride and enjoyment in following and researching design and eating out trends so that we can also share these with you.

Our unique in-house skills base and knowledge of the hospitality industry has led to us being highly respected in the fields of kitchen and interior design.  Such diversity within our team enables us to deliver every project seamlessly, ensuring that our clients receive prompt, professional, accurate and constructive responses, every step of the way.

Family Run Culture

Our family orientated culture and values mean that we take a personal approach to every project.  We work hand-in-hand with our clients as part of their team to nurture and care for every aspect of their project, applying these values to everything from a simple modification to a complete design and build project.  We don’t have a ‘house’ style, preferring instead to create something special that will work for you now and in the future.  So we’ll take time to get to know you and immerse ourselves in your culture and values.  We’ll stand back and listen to what’s important to you and incorporate these themes and our own research into our concepts.  It’s our job to turn your vision into reality.

Inspiring environments

Our responsibility is to create a great experience for your customers.  We do this by ensuring that there is synergy between front and back of house which is vital to enable your staff to deliver outstanding customer service.  Attention to detail is critical and a trait that sets us apart from the competition.   Those ‘little touches’ make all the difference and can transform your café or restaurant into a destination venue.

With an impressive and diverse skills base, a wealth of experience and a real understanding of how a restaurant or kitchen should look, feel and operate – we will create an inspiring environment for you that your customers will love

Catering Design Group at Glee 2014.  Stand 17U26-V25

Online bread company Bread Du Jour officially launched

Bread Du Jour specialises in Artisan long life bake-off breads, the range features over 20 varieties, and each have an ambient shelf life of 14 days...

Last weekend saw the official launch of wholesale online bread company Bread Du Jour at the Speciality and Fine Foods fair.

Bread Du Jour specialises in Artisan long life bake-off breads, and won silver at the World Bread Awards 2013.

The range features over 20 varieties of bread, and each have an ambient shelf life of 14 days – making them ideal for businesses wanting to save space, as there is no need to store the loaves in freezers and stock can be kept out as display.

The handcrafted breads are baked using traditional slow bakery processes and an original aged sourdough, making them full of flavour. Consumers can then bake-off the loaves in any type of oven.

Garden centres can maximise their product availability as orders are placed on a ‘pick and mix’ basis, rather than boxes – they can order the exact desired amount of any variety of loaves.

“We’re not selling boxes, we’re selling loaves,” said Kevin Bennett, Bread Du Jour Director. “We bake our bread fresh to order, and businesses ordering the exact amount they desire means less waste and a more diverse range.”

To view the full range or place an order, visit

Watch out for more coverage from the Speciality and Fine Foods Fair in the next issue of GTN Food Xtra.

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