Published: September 5th, 2016
Food and drink buyers from across the globe are hoping to find new brands and products for their markets when they visit Shropshire’s Ludlow Food Festival next month.
The renowned festival, which takes place between September 9 and 11, will see 180 small, independent food and drink producers from the Marches selling their wares within the town’s castle walls.
And on the opening day, the Department for International Trade West Midlands is joining forces with festival organisers and Buy-From Shropshire, which showcases producers and artists from the county, to offer visitors and exhibitors the chance to learn more about exporting.
It is also bringing buyers and trade advisers from a variety of overseas markets to introduce them to the local producers, as part of the Department’s Exporting is GREAT campaign which aims to inspire and support UK businesses of all sizes to seize thousands of current export opportunities available around the world.
International Trade Advisers (ITAs) will be on hand at the Exporting is GREAT stand to offer advice on how to start exporting or how to grow overseas business and at noon, there will be an interactive workshop at which visitors can learn about exporting and hear from buyers and experts on opportunities all over the world.
After the festival has closed for the day, it will host a Meet the Buyer reception, an exclusive networking reception for exhibitors to meet other local businesses and to speak with overseas buyers and trade advisers.
Christine Hamilton, interim regional director for The Department for International Trade West Midlands, said: "Taking buyers and international trade advisers to the Ludlow Food Festival is a first for us and we are really looking forward to meeting some of the amazing food and drink producers from the Marches area.
"It is the ideal opportunity for us to speak to a wide range of local producers about how we can support them as they start to export or if they want to build on what they have already achieved. We have helped a number of food and drink producers in the region expand their horizons and they are now successfully selling overseas.
"We’re delighted to be part of the Ludlow Food Festival this year and we hope that we – and companies who have worked with us previously – will encourage those who have yet to sell overseas. Any company looking to achieve global success should go to the Exporting is GREAT website to apply for current export opportunities and book an appointment with one of our local ITAs."
Lindsey Rollins, event manager of the Ludlow Food Festival, said: "Our ethos as a food festival is to support independent food and drink producers, which means we are delighted this year to welcome the Department for International Trade as part of the Festival as well as the overseas buyers. We hope this will increase opportunities and extend our offering to those businesses who are part of Ludlow Food Festival,"
Nick Davis, owner of Hobsons Brewery, which will be exhibiting at the Festival, said he hoped the event will encourage more local businesses will step up their export programme.
He said: "This is a great opportunity for local companies to meet with a range of buyers and experts from overseas markets, who can sample some of the fantastic food and drink available from the region. We’ve benefited from the help and expertise of the International team over the past 15 years to grow our export business and would encourage local producers to get involved in export."
The Department for International Trade’s Exporting is GREAT stand will be located in the Inner Bailey in Ludlow Castle on September 9.