In response to consumer demand for healthy foods and concern about where food comes from, IFE has created two new sections - Health & Wellbeing and Organic & Natural Products.
Health & Wellbeing exhibitors will be showing new food and drink products with health benefits as well catering for dietary requirements. The Food Doctor, for instance, will be exhibiting its 'Just Steam!' microwave meals, using quinoa and seeds, which are nutritionally balanced and have no colourings or flavours.
Free-from food companies will also be big news at this year's event, which reflects the growth in consumers with food intolerances. According to Allergy UK, up to 45% of people suffer from intolerances to food, while 2% suffer from food allergies.
Delicious Alchemy will be showcasing its wheat, gluten and lactose-free cakes, while Gluten Free Foods will be launching Barkat Buckwheat Pastas at the show. Available as penne or spirals, the pasta is free from gluten, wheat, milk, nuts, egg and soya.
Wheat and gluten-free mini pretzels are among the products on offer at Nutrition Point, under the Trufree brand. The company will be unveiling its gluten-free brown multigrain deli roll, which can be eaten straight from the pack. Its sweet range includes gluten and wheat-free biscuits including options such as chocolate cream sandwich biscuits with a vanilla filling.
Reflecting the international appeal of free-from, Brazilian Flavours will be launching Pao de Queijo (cheesebread), a gluten and wheat-free ready-to-bake frozen snack product from South America. It is low in salt, suitable for vegetarians and comes in three varieties: original; sesame & poppy seeds; and garlic.
Soya drinks will also feature prominently - especially soya milk. The total dairy-free market is worth £87m a year [Nielsen MAT Oct 2006]. Alpro will be at the show, offering samples of the first chilled, unsweetened light soya milk - Alpro Light - which contains 1.2% fat and multivitamins. It will also be showing its dairy-free yoghurts which contain a probiotic (Bifidus), added vitamins and less sugar.
Soya Health Foods will be launching a range of soya beverages under the Healthy Start brand. These include a soya milk flavoured with vanilla and honey and three breakfast juices including mandarin & pomegranate Breakfast Juice and Soya Fusion. n