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28 August 2015

Meet the expert: Martin Jinks of Roythornes Solicitors

To give you a little more insight into the experts that are part of the live panel for our Pitch to the Experts competition, we are introducing each of the four members over the coming days…

Martin Jinks
Martin is a partner of Roythornes and a corporate and commercial lawyer with significant experience of both transactional and non-transactional work. As part of Roythornes Food and Drink team he advises food businesses on a wide range of issues from contract negotiations to corporate restructures.

Blending a commercial approach with a detailed knowledge of the law he has a particular knowledge of business structures and helping businesses decide which is the most suited to match their growth plans. This work involves advising on joint ventures, private equity investment and disputes.

As food businesses grow they often need to consider out-sourcing elements of their production or other aspects of manufacture. Martin helps to ensure that the agreements in place protect the food business itself and have the flexibility to adapt to changing market demands.


For more information about the Pitch to the Experts competition read our article where you will also find the links to submit your pitch to win up to £10,000 worth of help and advice for your food business.

27 August 2015

Meet the expert: Andrew Watkin of Assynt Corporate Finance Limited

To give you a little more insight into the experts that are part of the live panel for our Pitch to the Experts competition, we are introducing each of the four members over the coming days…

Andrew Watkin
Andrew was made a partner in 1987 and became involved in more special one-off pieces of work for clients including the buying and selling of businesses. He was soon able to appreciate the commercial skills needed to run a practice.

Formed in 2013 Assynt Corporate Finance Limited is a new generation of advisory chartered accountancy practice providing only corporate finance services:

On a sale of a business you want to maximise the value you receive.
On a purchase of a business you want to know what you are buying.

On raising funds you want it to be quick, simple and cost effective.
Andrew can add value from his practical experience that will support you and the aim is to provide you with advice over the long term that will help you to build and realise value in your business.


For more information about the Pitch to the Experts competition read our article where you will also find the links to submit your pitch to win up to £10,000 worth of help and advice for your food business.

26 August 2015

Meet the expert: John F Kettley of The Sales Masters Guild

To give you a little more insight into the experts that are part of the live panel for our Pitch to the Experts competition, we are introducing each of the four members over the coming days…

John F Kettley
John is fast becoming known as one of the UK’s top inspirational speakers on how to achieve your true potential in building a high income wealth creating business.

Having started built and sold a number of his own businesses in multiple market sectors, John has experienced just about every challenge a business owner will ever face, which is why his presentations and business development seminars are so valuable to hear and learn from.

As a serial entrepreneur and business investor, John has invested in, built and sold a diverse range of companies, accruing business knowledge and interests in the UK, Ireland, Spain and the USA.

In 2009 John founded the Sales Masters Guild, a profit share organisation whose mission is to inspire educate and support business owners to grow solid profit orientated businesses that work.


For more information about the Pitch to the Experts competition read our article where you will also find the links to submit your pitch to win up to £10,000 worth of help and advice for your food business.

25 August 2015

Womersley Foods exhibiting at Speciality & Fine Food Fair 2015

The Speciality & Fine Food Fair is coming to London, Olympia on 6th – 8th September 2015 and there will be a number of Artisan Food Trail members exhibiting at the trade show.

Womersley Foods will be on stand V58 showcasing their 'Drop dead gorgeous' fruit and herb vinegars.

Whilst the making of fruit vinegars is a fine old British tradition, Womersley we are proud to say that they have perfected recipes which will delight and surprise you. The recent popularity of drinking vinegars has further increased the profile of Womersley fruit vinegars.
Their multi-award winning vinegars all contain generous quantities of the rich fruits which give them a luxurious finish.
Visit their stand to try the new fruitier recipes to discover how delicious they are and why they are a must for all fine food outlets.

More information about Womersley Foods here
Find them on Stand V58 at the Speciality & Fine Food Fair
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23 August 2015

Spiced Mackerel with Fennel Slaw

Photo: © childsdesign
***
We are certainly enjoying the abundance of fresh mackerel at the moment –
it is reasonably priced and readily available.
Our second mackerel recipe includes some interesting flavours for a light and healthy meal which is good any day of the week.

Fennel is one of our favourite vegetables with its fresh aniseed flavour and,
in our opinion, so much nicer than cabbage in a slaw.
Although we have little success in growing bulb fennel, we have no trouble
with herb fennel. As well as the leaves, the flowers are very edible and release an intense burst of aniseed flavour in the mouth – something to try, if you haven’t already.

If you want to make a more substantial meal, simply serve with some boiled new potatoes or some buttered crusty bread.

View recipe

22 August 2015

Grilled Mackerel with Pepper Salad

Photo: © childsdesign
***
Mackerel is at its seasonal best and widely available at the moment, so make the most of it.
A rich oily fish packed with omega-3 goodness it is perfect cooked on the grill until its beautiful shiny skin turns crisp.
Lightly seasoned with a smoked paprika oil, we’ve paired the mackerel with a tangy and fruity pepper salad to bring a taste of the Mediterranean to the table.

View recipe

21 August 2015

Pitch to the Experts to receive help in approaching retail buyers

The Artisan Food Trail has put together a panel of experts that could help you get that ‘leg-up’ with your food business.
Pitch to the Experts is a competition where the winning food business will receive up to a total of £10,000 worth of expert advice and help from the 10 members of the panel.

We’d like to introduce each of the panel members individually to give you a better understanding of their businesses and how they could help you.
There are also details of the prize they are offering to the Pitch to the Experts winner.

Today we introduce Fresh Perspective, helping you to be more successful when approaching retail buyers…

Understanding how buyers think is crucial for getting and keeping your products on the shelves of your chosen customers and Hazel Stride from Fresh Perspective is an expert in knowing how buyers think, how to approach them and successfully get your products listed.

Have you experienced the following?

  • You find it difficult engaging with retail buyers
  • You hit a wall of silence when following up on leads you have from the trade shows
  • You have a successful first meeting with the buyer only to never hear from them again

If you can answer yes to any of these questions then read on…

Fresh Perspective is the only specialist consultancy that provides insight with the authority of having actually worked for two of the UK’s largest multiple retailers. They specialise in advising FMCG blue chip and artisan food producers on how to win with their retail customers.

Hazel Stride founded Fresh Perspective after identifying the need for businesses to think and talk like their customers enabling them to be more successful in getting, keeping and growing their business in the retail market.

Having sat on the ‘dark side’ of the desk for many years as a buyer for one of the UK’s largest retailers, Hazel has seen the good, bad and ugly of companies trying to sell their products.

With this knowledge Hazel guides companies on their route to market offering unique insight into what it is like to be a buyer, how to pitch your offer to engage with your audience, negotiation skills and lots more.

Hazel has spent all her career in the food industry and has a rare ability to understand the whole supply chain from ‘plough to plate’.

She has worked with some established branded and private label manufacturers that include Weetabix and Müller Dairy and in addition she has recently spent time working with the food team at Selfridges helping to launch their new range of ‘Selfridges Selection’ products.

Fresh Perspective is delighted to be working in collaboration with the Artisan Food Trail and each of the panel of experts to provide a truly unique and valuable prize, which can help you and your business be more successful.

The Prize

  • Pitch your product to Hazel in a ‘safe’ environment as if you were delivering your pitch to a ‘buyer’ and get the all-important feedback. Hazel will then work with you to build on and improve your approach so you are ready to tackle the ‘real thing’.

Web: www.fresh-perspective.co.uk
Email: info@fresh-perspective.co.uk
Tel: 07836 352068
Twitter: @HazelFreshP
Linkedin: http://uk.linkedin.com/in/hazelstride


For more information about the Pitch to the Experts competition read our article where you will also find the links to submit your pitch to win up to £10,000 worth of help and advice for your food business.

20 August 2015

Pitch to the Experts for advice on developing your kitchen facility

The Artisan Food Trail has put together a panel of experts that could help you get that ‘leg-up’ with your food business.
Pitch to the Experts is a competition where the winning food business will receive up to a total of £10,000 worth of expert advice and help from the 10 members of the panel.

We’d like to introduce each of the panel members individually to give you a better understanding of their businesses and how they could help you.
There are also details of the prize they are offering to the Pitch to the Experts winner.

Today we introduce Eco Catering Equipment, suppliers of leading commercial catering equipment to the catering, hospitality and food production industries…

The Artisan Food Trail has a created a great community and resource to enable the independent producers and newcomers to share, develop and grow. Eco Catering is proud to be associated with them and do our part to assist in any way we can, whether it be the supply of equipment or some industry advice.

It is important when you purchase any equipment that it is suitable for the environment in which it is to operate. Eco Catering helps you meet those needs by supplying proven industry leading products, helping to maximise your return on your investment.

Venturing into the world of commercial kitchen equipment can be a daunting experience, so we help to guide you in making the right choices. Whether you’re looking to replace existing equipment or needing a completely new set up, we will assist you through the whole process.

Even the smallest production facilities can benefit significantly from purchasing the correct equipment to help their company perform and grow. Quality equipment is not just for the big names.There is equipment available to suit every production requirement and budget.

This equipment will invariably form the heart of your production operation and to have it fail or not perform can have significant financial implications.
It is vital that our customers experience the very best level of support. From the first time they contact with us, through to the final purchasing decision, we provide relevant advice detailing the benefits and features of our products. We will help guide you so you can make an informed choice and be confident you will have a performing production facility.

We can consult on your production and budgetary requirements, not only making sure you create a facility that can handle the workload now but for any future expansion plans. We also focus on the hidden costs. Utility bills, which are always on the increase, are often overlooked but there are significant running cost implications and potential savings to be made. We will consider and advise on the life expectancy and future service and parts support of any equipment.

You are our highest priority, our team fully understands this and our customer support ensures clients always purchase with confidence.

The Prize
  • Advice and consultancy on the development of your kitchen or production facility.
  • If you do decide to purchase any equipment through us, you will be entitled to the AFT member’s discount.

Web: www.eco-catering-equipment.co.uk
Email: info@eco-catering-equipment.co.uk
Tel: 01582 865050
Twitter: @Eco_Catering
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Eco-Catering-Equipment/212549602109241


For more information about the Pitch to the Experts competition read our article where you will also find the links to submit your pitch to win up to £10,000 worth of help and advice for your food business.

Make way for new superfruit jujube! – Tg Green Teas launches new hot and iced teas

Tg Green Teas, a new brand of hot and iced teas will ‘officially’ launch from stand 4468 at the Speciality & Fine Food Fair, Olympia, London: 6th – 8th September 2015.

The brand won a gold star for two of its hot blends – Green Tea and Green Tea with Jujube & Osmanthus.

Hua and Sophia, co-founders of the new London-based beverage company Tg Green Teas are very pleased to have been awarded the gold stars, saying,
“One of the most exciting aspects of our win is the discovery by the Great Taste Award judges of a delicious new superfruit”

So, just what is Jujube?
Tg Green Teas explain:
  • Jujube fruit or Chinese red date (hong zao 红枣) – pronounced “joo-joob” – has been cultivated in China for more than 4,000 years
  • Jujubes taste of sweet plums
  • Considered the ‘King of Vitamin C’, Jujubes have been used over centuries to help enhance health and vitality in so many ways it’s earned the title of ‘superfruit’ across Asia
  • Collagen-rich ‘beauty drinks’ don’t do much for you apart from loading you up with more sugar as the collagen in the drink will never reach the skin but be broken down in the stomach as more energy – better to consume food & drink naturally containing vitamin C and drink lots of water
  • We say ‘an apple a day keeps the doctor away’. The Chinese say ‘three jujubes a day keeps the medicine man at bay’

Tg are urging consumers to banish stale bags of bitter green tea dust and say no to pricey plant sap or high sugar drinks. This is Tg. Hot and iced green tea as it’s meant to be – smart! sassy! social! and full of delicious goodness just right at mealtime or anytime pick-me-up. Inspired by ancient wellness traditions from the Middle Kingdom, designed and developed in London.

Hua and Sophia look forward to welcoming you into the refreshingly delicious world of Tg Green Teas  Available soon in the USA, the Middle East, and in food and drink shops right here in the UK. In the meantime, you can try their hot and iced green teas via their e-shop shop.drinktg.com or Amazon (UK) before the rest of the UK begins to discover them. You’ll always be able to say to your friends “I tried them before you”.

Tg Green Teas exhibiting at Speciality & Fine Food Fair 2015


The Speciality & Fine Food Fair is coming to London, Olympia on 6th – 8th September 2015 and there will be a number of Artisan Food Trail members exhibiting at the trade show.

Tg Green Teas will be on stand 4468 showcasing their refreshingly delicious new range of hot and iced green teas.

Ancient green tea and wellness traditions, blended into refreshing hot and chilled brews. Deliciously natural energy infusions using good-for-you ingredients, some borrowed some new. Inspired by the Middle Kingdom, designed and developed in Britain. Great taste and “responsible sugar levels”, because both matter.
Smart. Sassy. Social. Tg Green Tea. Drinkup.

Have you heard about the superfruit jujube?
Tg have added it to their teas – Read more about it here.

More information about Tg Green Teas here
Find them on Stand 4468 at the Speciality & Fine Food Fair
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19 August 2015

Pitch to the Experts for business networking and social media training

The Artisan Food Trail has put together a panel of experts that could help you get that ‘leg-up’ with your food business.
Pitch to the Experts is a competition where the winning food business will receive up to a total of £10,000 worth of expert advice and help from the 10 members of the panel.

We’d like to introduce each of the panel members individually to give you a better understanding of their businesses and how they could help you.
There are also details of the prize they are offering to the Pitch to the Experts winner.

Today we introduce 24-7 Business Networking, helping 
your business grow through business networking and 
social media…

Social Media and Networking Works…
We know this… And we also know… Many people are not getting the most out of their investment in social media, or networking. Simply put, 24-7 Business Networking addresses the issues people face with their social media and business networking, by teaching you how to get it right first time:

  • How to effectively and efficiently network face to face
  • How to effectively and efficiently use social media and engage with social networking
  • Understand the true costs incurred
  • How to measure the ROI of your investment in business networking
  • How to get more leads, more visibility, better targeting and more enquiries

Through 24-7’s training, mentoring and our own networking groups, we provide a step by step Pathway Programme to develop your networking strategies resulting in effective and efficient networking – giving more leads, more visibility, better targeting and more enquiries.

I’m Mick Holloway, the architect of 24-7 Business Networking’s thoughtfully, innovative networking platform. Defining and developing 24-7’s holistic approach to networking support has drawn on my understanding of the web technologies, my business experience, over 15 years of active business networking and my ability through training and tutorials to ‘de-mystify’ complex technical subjects and facilitate the application of technology to business.

I am delighted with the flexible services we have put together in
24-7 Business Networking.
Following our Social Media Success Circle using this strategy…

“Why do it?” “What do I want?”
“Who do I need to connect to?”
“Where do I find them?”
“What do I say to them?”
“How do I organise them?”
“How do I know if it’s working?”

  • Our members choose how they wish to learn and how much support they need
  • A comprehensive, and growing, range of tutorials and training courses, delivered however you like to learn, self taught, class based, mentored, group learning, online or video based
  • Our own face to face networking groups
  • Our own social networking groups
  • Measurable results

The food industry is perfectly placed to benefit from social media. Applied correctly, social media is a hugely effective, very low cost way to raise your profile, reach new markets, new customers. Ideal for product launches, news, updates and generally sharing messages with customers old and new.

24-7’s social media training shows you how to effectively and efficiently grow your food business, whatever size. We show you how to leverage your passion for your products and services. How to spread the word online reaching wider audiences – 24/7. Capturing your uniqueness, focussing on your niche, we show you how to make sure your social media presence works for you helping you achieve your business goals.



Whatever levels of IT, computer and social media skills and knowledge you have, our training de-mystifies complex processes making social media success available for all.

Complete beginner? Relax we take it gently, we take it slow, building your skills steadily – contrary to what you may think – social media is not rocket science you only need to be shown, and we have you backed up with our own forums and access to our experts.

Experienced user? Great, let us take you past your self-taught knowledge, sharing industry best practice strategies, and techniques to improve your ROI while at the same time drive down the time you invest. And we insulate you from the ever, and rapidly, changing technology, monitoring ‘over the horizon’ keeping ahead of the curve and then sharing developing trends and technologies.

We keep it SIMPLE, we show you HOW, and we HELP you to make the most of social media.

The Prize
2 x 12 month’s full 24-7 membership
2 x places on our mentored training programme

Web: www.24-7.so
Tel: 01438 791017
Email: info@24-7.so
Twitter: @247Networking
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/247Networking
You Tube: https://www.youtube.com/user/247networking
Google+: https://plus.google.com/u/0/+24-7So/posts
Blog: http://mickholloway.blogspot.co.uk


For more information about the Pitch to the Experts competition read our article where you will also find the links to submit your pitch to win up to £10,000 worth of help and advice for your food business.

Simply Ice Cream exhibiting at Speciality & Fine Food Fair 2015


The Speciality & Fine Food Fair is coming to London, Olympia on 6th – 8th September 2015 and there will be a number of Artisan Food Trail members exhibiting at the trade show.

Simply Ice Cream will be on stand 1750 showcasing their multi award wining indulgent ice creams and sorbets.

Simply Ice Cream make multi award winning indulgent ice creams and sorbets in a range of over 32 retail and food service packs. A truly handmade artisan product. Simply Heavenly.

More information about Simply Ice Cream here
Find them on Stand 1750 at the Speciality & Fine Food Fair
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18 August 2015

Pitch to the Experts for greater customer connection and communication

The Artisan Food Trail has put together a panel of experts that could help you get that ‘leg-up’ with your food business.
Pitch to the Experts is a competition where the winning food business will receive up to a total of £10,000 worth of expert advice and help from the 10 members of the panel.

We’d like to introduce each of the panel members individually to give you a better understanding of their businesses and how they could help you.
There are also details of the prize they are offering to the Pitch to the Experts winner.

Today we introduce Light Degree, experts in customer relationship management…

Automating systems in the Food Industry
When operating a business, a key component in ensuring the success of the business for the long term, is a list of your customers. Then you might extend the list to include potential customers and even suppliers.

While when starting out you might be able to use a spreadsheet to record this information. As your business expands, however, it is a little trickier to keep it updated and at the same time sharing it with other team members, for example, is this the most recent version that has the updates? and also there can be a lot of copying and pasting to even make it work effectively.

A minimum basic requirement is a CRM or customer relationship management software which can have shared access and when it is updated all of the updates are automatically in place for everyone else.

This then not only records details of static information but, just as importantly,
it can track the status of your contacts, such as are they a potential customer, have we already sent them a quote or a brochure or have they been a customer for a long time. Because when they call your business it can make a difference to how you will speak with them, at least it will make a difference what you will talk to them about. For example, if they are a long standing customer, who called a couple of days ago to ask about a new product order, then they don’t really want to receive a sales pitch, instead they probably just want to talk about their football team or what they did last weekend. If you have this information in front of you when talking with them to prompt you with what you talked about with them the last time you spoke, it is so much easier to build strong relationships with them.

It is really helpful to be able to sort your contacts list into categories and then to be able to send a mail-out either in the post or using a bulk email application. This means that you can send a marketing campaign that has been tailored to the interests of the people you are talking too.
You might also want to capture a list of names of people who are interested in your business and who would like to receive press release information and announcements of special products etc. so that you can email them updates. This can have a profound benefit when releasing a new product because you can spread the word probably so much easier than using traditional marketing methods (and it’s probably much cheaper as well).

OK so now you have your contact / customers and supplier details sorted,
how about your employees? This application allows you to record employees or contractors details including such things like their home address, next of
kin etc.

Along with your supplier details you can also record stock or inventory information. Stock levels, quantities stored in different stores or warehouses along with details about each of your stock line items such as descriptions, photographs / images, batch best before dates, bar codes and other information.

If you have a manufacturing process that runs over days or weeks then each batch can be added as a project. Then you can allocate jobs and manage the progression through the process.

Because all of this information can be accessed using this one application which you can update from any computer or by using a mobile app it is really easy to put the systems in place to manage your business.
The best part is that with the systems in place you are in a position to expand and grow your business.

The Prize
  • 12 months access to the light degree application
  • up to 10 users
  • setup including custom fields / tags for your business
  • uploading of your contact information (bulk data import)
  • unlimited online training (for the first 30 days) to get you started
  • backups of all information
  • ongoing support
  • application updates
(includes email marketing trial)

Web: www.lightdegree.com
Tel: 01707 262399 / 07738 150146
Google+: https://plus.google.com/b/103643126310114431777/+Lightdegree-Job-Management-and-CRM/posts
Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/company/light-degree-limited?trk=biz-companies-cym
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Light-Degree/260778820692229
Twitter: @lightdegree


For more information about the Pitch to the Experts competition read our article where you will also find the links to submit your pitch to win up to £10,000 worth of help and advice for your food business.

17 August 2015

Pitch to the Experts for fire safety help

The Artisan Food Trail has put together a panel of experts that could help you get that ‘leg-up’ with your food business.
Pitch to the Experts is a competition where the winning food business will receive up to a total of £10,000 worth of expert advice and help from the 10 members of the panel.

We’d like to introduce each of the panel members individually to give you a better understanding of their businesses and how they could help you.
There are also details of the prize they are offering to the Pitch to the Experts winner.

Today we introduce Fire Safety Services (UK), helping to keep your food business safe…

Fire Safety Services (UK) Ltd are supporting small food businesses throughout the UK by forming part of the £10k prize package for the winner of 'Pitch to the Experts' at this year's Food Entrepreneur Show & Takeaway Innovation Expo.

Fire Safety Management For Food Businesses
A fire safety management system can significantly reduce the risks and minimise the potential effects of fire. Fire safety management need not be complicated for your business. Fire Risk Assessments must be suitable and sufficient, therefore need to be completed by competent persons. We can help all sizes of food business (including, catering companies, hotels, restaurants and fixed/mobile takeaway companies) to ensure they get it right.

It is very easy to become complacent about basic fire safety management when you have a whole myriad of tasks and pressures needing attention. However, by accepting poor housekeeping or breaching fire compartments by wedging open fire resisting doors, a small fire could potentially grow substantially and quickly spread through the building and become untenable. This would be easily preventable by implementing a simple fire safety management system.

Why Choose Us?
Fire Safety Services work on the principle of offering a high quality service and products to its customers, irrespective of size, location, quantity of sites etc. because fire is indiscriminate and can affect anyone at any time.

Quality and integrity are at the heart of our company culture; distinguishing our company from other fire safety providers.

Third-party Accreditation
We are a third-party accredited company. This means that we are assessed independently on a regular basis to ensure we comply with the highest possible standards in fire safety. We are ISO 9001:2008 certified, BAFE approved, NSI Gold Fire certified, LPCB approved and hold registration under the government backed CHAS scheme for health & safety. Furthermore, we are active members of the industry leading Fire Industry Association (FIA).

Top 5 Fire Safety Tips for Food Businesses
Most of us will be aware of events involving fire, some may have experienced it personally, but in generally it is something that happens to somebody else.

When you have had a Fire Risk Assessment carried out it must be suitable and sufficient; this will help you reduce the potential for a fire occurring dramatically. It will give you the guidance to put in place the training, plans, measures, equipment and maintenance needed to ensure your business is compliant, protected and less likely to suffer the devastating effects of a fire.

Below we have compiled our top 5 fire safety tips for food businesses:

  1. Storage – Remove any empty boxes and other combustible items and ensure stock is not stacked too close to heat sources such as lighting or heaters.
  2. Escape Routes – These can become temporarily blocked during deliveries. Once the delivery is finished clear the exit routes and move stock to the appropriate area/room.
  3. Automatic detection / sprinkler heads – Avoid storing stock too close to these as they will not work as designed. Also do not cover the detector heads with plastic bags etc.! If they keep going off you must find out why and get the problem rectified.
  4. Ducting – A high amount of fires start in the ducting above the cooking range to the outlet. This is due to grease deposits building up and igniting. The ducting should be deep cleaned annually by an approved contractor. Interim cleaning of removable filters and grease traps should be implemented weekly.
  5. Fire Extinguishers – Ensure these are visually inspected weekly to confirm they are ready for use and are not obstructed. Regular staff training should be carried out to familiarise staff with the different types of fire fighting equipment and how to use it.

The Prize
The prize provides the winner with a Fire Risk Assessment (including written report) containing fire safety compliance recommendations and advice up to a value of £1k.

Web: www.firesafetyservices.co.uk
Tel: 08000 23411
Email: enquiries@firesafetyservices.co.uk
Twitter: @fss_fire
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/fssuk
Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/company/fire-safety-services-uk-ltd


For more information about the Pitch to the Experts competition read our article where you will also find the links to submit your pitch to win up to £10,000 worth of help and advice for your food business.

14 August 2015

Pitch to the Experts for funding assistance

The Artisan Food Trail has put together a panel of experts that could help you get that ‘leg-up’ with your food business.
Pitch to the Experts is a competition where the winning food business will receive up to a total of £10,000 worth of expert advice and help from the 10 members of the panel.

We’d like to introduce each of the panel members individually to give you a better understanding of their businesses and how they could help you.
There are also details of the prize they are offering to the Pitch to the Experts winner.

Today we introduce Assynt, experts in crowdfunding…

Assynt is a new generation of advisory chartered accountancy practice. One of its main services is to help growing businesses with their funding requirements by finding the most appropriate form of funding whether that is traditional or alternative ways at the least cost.
Traditional bank lending has not disappeared it’s just more difficult to raise the money now, especially if you have no security to offer. So a well-structured business plan is a vital part of the requirements which will help you to raise the funds you require to grow your business.

Some alternative types of funding seek money from the crowd. It’s known as crowdfunding, that’s reward, equity or peer-to-peer funding.

One of the more successful type of businesses, which have been able to raise funds on crowdfunding sites, are food related businesses. All types of site have been successful in raising funds in this sector of the market. So you do stand a good chance of being successful!

The approach has to be different as you have to appeal to the Crowd and not just a bank manager and a credit committee.

With peer-to-peer funding you need to convince someone the money they lend to you is safe in your hands and will be returned to them with interest.

With equity crowdfunding you have to go further by convincing a third party to invest in your business where there is no security to support their investments. So, how are you going to do this if you do not appeal to them? The answer is to look at the fund raising exercise as more of a marketing campaign rather than just a fund-raising exercise.

So, to add to the chances of success you need to create a “following” who will be advocates for the before the fund-raising exercise begins.

It’s important to choose the right site and I know about these and can assess which of the many sites now listed are suitable for your business and is more likely to be successful in raising your funds.

The tasks then fall into three before the equity site will accept the proposal and publicise it on their site:

  • A professionally produced video pitch explaining the business and why someone should invest in it
  • A well written business plan which can be easily read. Remember most people have a short attention span so you must find the right words to attract and maintain their interest. It is not a plan which would be read by a bank manager but one read by the general public; and
  • A set of numbers, that’s a balance sheet, profit and loss account and cash flow statement.

I would not profess to be an expert in making videos; however I do know a good business plan when I see it. I have read several over the years and can tell those that have been well researched and put together. I would not write it for you but would be a critical friend when reviewing it.

Once you have a fair idea of how the plan looks we need to put together some numbers. I can help you as I have been involved in many fund raising exercises and have a template which can be adapted to provide the sites with the information they require.

The Prize
  • If a large, growing business wins, we will be offering a full financial health check along with a written report identifying those areas where cost savings could be made along with a written report on the alternative means of funding the growth of the business.
  • For a smaller, growing business, it will be a shorter financial health check with a review of the alternative sources of finance available to them for funding the growth of their business.

Web: www.assyntcf.co.uk
Email: Andrew Watkin – awatkin@assyntcf.co.uk
Tel: 07860 898452
LinkedIn Andrew Watkin: https://uk.linkedin.com/in/andrewwatkin
LinkedIn Company: https://www.linkedin.com/company/assynt-corporate-finance-limited?trk=top_nav_home



For more information about the Pitch to the Experts competition read our article where you will also find the links to submit your pitch to win up to £10,000 worth of help and advice for your food business.

TruffleHunter exhibiting at Speciality & Fine Food Fair 2015


The Speciality & Fine Food Fair is coming to London, Olympia on 6th – 8th September 2015 and there will be a number of Artisan Food Trail members exhibiting at the trade show.

Truffle Hunter will be on stand 1860 showcasing their truffle products from oils and mustards to mayonnaise.

A UK based family food business, sourcing truffles from their Sibillini Mountain location in Central Italy. Manufacturing the absolute freshest high quality Italian truffles and truffle products.

More information about TruffleHunter here
Find them on Stand 1860 at the Speciality & Fine Food Fair
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13 August 2015

Pitch to the Experts for mentoring and training

The Artisan Food Trail has put together a panel of experts that could help you get that ‘leg-up’ with your food business.
Pitch to the Experts is a competition where the winning food business will receive up to a total of £10,000 worth of expert advice and help from the 10 members of the panel.

We’d like to introduce each of the panel members individually to give you a better understanding of their businesses and how they could help you.
There are also details of the prize they are offering to the Pitch to the Experts winner.

Today we introduce The Sales Masters Guild, helping businesses to create wealth …

As founder of the Sales Masters Guild and co-founder/owner of Gladleys Courtyard Brasserie in North Hertfordshire, John Kettley has a special passion for owner operator businesses whose focus is in the food industry, particularly those businesses that are founded on a passion for providing something that the mass producers simply cannot offer, which is why John and his team are looking forward to working with the Artisan Food Trail to help food businesses flourish and thrive at this year's Food Entrepreneur Show.

The Sales Masters Guild was founded in 2009 by John F Kettley, to help turn around and make profitable the tens of thousands of struggling owner operator businesses across the UK that were and are being let down by the banks, government and national 'business organisations'.

The sad fact is, '80% of businesses fail in their first five years of trading' and of those that do survive, 80% of these never go on to actually achieve their goal of being a high-income business.

The main reason for this appalling set of statistics, being that all to often the business owner (while being an expert at what it is that they do), has simply never studied 'HOW' to build a high-income business; they've never learnt how to develop a brand and market that brand to the right niche market sector, nor have they learned how to create a value proposition that has clients lining up at the door to buy their services.

This is why the Project Blueprint program was born i.e. to share the formula for a business that works, teaching business owners through mediums that work for them at a price that absolutely anyone in business can afford, let that be through reading the book, listening to the audio book version, studying the on-line video tutorial course, attending live mentored course seminars or personal 1-2-1 mentoring with a qualified SMG mentor.

Now six years later, the business mentors of the Guild have trained and helped thousands of business owners to stop struggling and turn their businesses into high-income generating businesses that create both wealth and the work-life balance they were originally set up to achieve.

The book 'How To Build A Business That Creates Wealth' by John Kettley is available through Amazon in digital, paperback and audio formats, the on-line video tutorial course containing over 50 individual elements is available at www.salesmastersguild.com where business owners can find a vast amount of free tutorials, downloadable resources and dates for upcoming seminars to help them learn the essentials needed to create a high-income business.

The Prize

  • A full review of their sales and marketing strategy from their business plan
  • A written report reviewing areas that need focus and recommendations
  • Two places at the two day Business and Sales Foundation workshop course
  • A free copy of John F Kettley's book 'How To Build A Business That Creates Wealth'
  • One year's access to the Sales Masters Guild on-line business growth course

Web: www.salesmastersguild.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Sales-Masters-Guild/350972714913289?fref=ts
Twitter: @JohnFKettley
Linkedin: www.linkedin.com/in/johnkettley
Google+: https://plus.google.com/u/0/+JohnKettley/posts
You Tube: https://www.youtube.com/user/SalesmastersGuild/videos


For more information about the Pitch to the Experts competition read our article where you will also find the links to submit your pitch to win up to £10,000 worth of help and advice for your food business.

Holy Lama Spice Drops exhibiting at Speciality & Fine Food Fair 2015


The Speciality & Fine Food Fair is coming to London, Olympia on 6th – 8th September 2015 and there will be a number of Artisan Food Trail members exhibiting at the trade show.

Holy Lama Spice Drops will be on stand 2359 showcasing their concentrated extracts of herbs and spices.

Award-winning concentrated extracts of herbs and spices, more convenient than dry spices. Use in cooking, baking, beverages (hot and cold), marinades, chocolates, sauces and more. For wholesale, retail and manufacturing.

Would like to meet…
Holy Lama Spice Drops is looking for delicatessens, farm shops and food halls interested in stocking their products. They are wishing to cover areas in larger cities such as London, Edinburgh and other places where customers are discerning.
They are also interested in meeting artisan producers who may need spice extracts in their manufacturing.

New products
Gift packs are to be introduced to cover tea lover's, baker's kit, barbecue kit, cocktail kit, curry lover's kit and home remedies kit.

At the show
Holy Lama Spice Drops will be demonstrating the convenience and versatility of their products and will have cakes, biscuits, mulled wine or lemonade to taste.

More information about Holy Lama Spice Drops here
Find them on Stand 2359 at the Speciality & Fine Food Fair
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12 August 2015

Pitch to the Experts for legal help

The Artisan Food Trail has put together a panel of experts that could help you get that ‘leg-up’ with your food business.
Pitch to the Experts is a competition where the winning food business will receive up to a total of £10,000 worth of expert advice and help from the 10 members of the panel.

We’d like to introduce each of the panel members individually to give you a better understanding of their businesses and how they could help you.
There are also details of the prize they are offering to the Pitch to the Experts winner.

Today we introduce Roythornes, one of the UK’s leading field-to-fork legal companies…

It’s a common ‘flaw’ with food businesses that they often get so tied up with their products that the all-important paperwork gets left behind.

Agreements are sometimes made on a handshake, and payment terms verbally agreed. This is fine for many in the early stages, but when problems arise, it’s the paperwork that needs to be the first port of call.

For over 85 years Roythornes has been involved in the food business. From our origins helping farmers in the heart of Lincolnshire we now act for some of the largest food businesses in the UK on a wide range of issues.

We often get asked “What does a lawyer have to do with the food sector?” and in fact there are many ways in which we can help. Perhaps the best way to highlight this is to ask yourself a few questions:

  • When was the last time you reviewed your terms of business (assuming you have some)? Do they reflect what you actually do as a business and do they protect you should things not go to plan?
  • If you employ staff, have you given them the correct documentation such as contacts of employment and are you confident they include the key points?
  • Are your debtors under control? If you have customers who are not paying you may want to consider getting some help to persuade them you are serious about collecting your money.
  • If you are speaking to possible outlets, what do you have in place to make sure they don’t take your idea and produce it themselves, or get someone cheaper to make it?

These are all real business issues that affect the profit in your pocket, and they are all areas where a lawyer can help.

Our Food team has a wealth of experience helping food businesses maximise their opportunities. From entrepreneurial start-ups to manufacturers with products in every shop in the high street it’s about taking a commercial approach in a fast moving and innovative sector.

The Prize
Roythornes Food and Drink team will undertake a full of review the paperwork of the winning business and recommend any changes that need to be made to ensure they are ‘fit for growth’. For example.

  • Is the business structure suited to its current trading position? Another structure could offer more protection, or be more tax efficient.
  • Does the business have written terms and conditions and if so how well do they reflect the way the company actually operates?
  • Is their credit control process watertight and how well are they managing their debtors? There’s no point selling products of you don’t get paid!

It’s an opportunity to get the ‘back-room’ sorted so that you can continue to focus on developing your great products.

Web: http://www.roythorne.co.uk/site/sectors/food-and-drink-solicitors/
Email: Martin Jinks – martinjinks@roythornes.co.uk
Tel: 01775 842500
Twitter: @roythornes_food


For more information about the Pitch to the Experts competition read our article where you will also find the links to submit your pitch to win up to £10,000 worth of help and advice for your food business.

Fudge Kitchen launches Signature Slice range

Photo: © Fudge Kitchen
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Fudge Kitchen is constantly innovating and are introducing a new product – the new Signature Slice range launching from Stand 3910 at Speciality Fine Food Fair, Olympia, London: 6th – 8th September 2015.

Intense slices of signature handmade, hand decorated premium fudge, made from all-natural, gluten-free ingredients, hand worked to a creamy texture, presented in beautiful gift packaging.

Available in eight best-selling flavours: Peanut Butter, White Chocolate & Raspberry, Sea Salted Caramel, Chilli Chocolate Orange, Rum & Raisin, Traditional Fudge, Mocha Choca and Classic Chocolate.
Set at an RRP of £3, the Signature Slice targets the impulse purchaser and the ever increasing self-gifting market. The products come with eye-catching counter display units, displaying eight upright slices in elegantly tempting rows.

In just over three years, since developing the Gourmet Butter Fudge umbrella range, the tally of Fudge Kitchen products has tipped over 100.
Lines now range from Drinking Fudge and Fudge Frappé to their recent move into sugar confectionery with the enthusiastically received Delectables range of brittle and caramels.
In between, 30 inspired flavours of gourmet fudge, can be found in twelve formats, ranging from loose serve to themed selection boxes, including the Puddings collection and 2015’s new gastro-globetrot, the Twelve Flavours of the World.

Photo: © Fudge Kitchen

Fudge Kitchen exhibiting at Speciality & Fine Food Fair 2015


The Speciality & Fine Food Fair is coming to London, Olympia on 6th – 8th September 2015 and there will be a number of Artisan Food Trail members exhibiting at the trade show.

Fudge Kitchen will be on stand 3910 showcasing their handmade fudge, fudge sauces and drinking fudge.

British producers since 1983 of Devilishly Different gourmet fudge, Liquid Fudge, Home Kits and the inventors of Drinking Fudge. Products beautifully presented in premium packaging ideal for delicious gifts.

New products
Fudge Kitchen will be launching their new Signature slices at the show – read more here.

More information about Fudge Kitchen here
Find them on Stand 3910 at the Speciality & Fine Food Fair
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