Get a taste of new food and drink innovations from Wales

Welsh food and drink producers will once again be leading the way at one of the most important events dedicated to food, health and sustainable nutrition. Food Matters Live, held later this month (19-20 November), showcases new products and highlights the latest developments and will again demonstrate that innovation and quality are at the heart of the food and drink revolution in Wales.

The team from the award-winning Bug Farm Foods, which produces innovative and unique products made with insect protein, will be present. Their range includes two flavours of Cricket Cookies and Buffalo Biscuits, as well as a range of insect powders, and whole insects.

Founders, entomologist Dr Sarah Beynon and award-winning chef Andy Holcroft will be showcasing a new insect and plant protein known as VEXo, developed to help tackle childhood obesity. VEXo can be used in a similar way to minced meat, whilst reducing saturated fat by 70-80%.

Dr Sarah Beynon explains:

“Insects are exceptionally nutrient-dense and environmentally sustainable to produce. Many insects contain weight-for-weight a similar amount of protein to beef and they can contain all nine essential amino acids. Insects can be farmed in high-welfare farms while requiring very little feed, water and space, and emitting hardly any greenhouse gases.”

Andy Holcroft adds:

“We were tasked by Welsh Government and Innovate UK under the Small Business Research Initiative (SBRI) project to find a way to harness the nutrients contained in insects and deliver them in a form that is acceptable to our western palettes”.

Joining them on the Food and Drink Wales stand will be start-up company, Alchemy Gold, an artisan company who have developed a potent turmeric based health drink from scratch. Following a number of years spent researching and developing the best possible recipe for taste and nutritional value. Alchemy Gold will be available from December 2019.

David Dunn is the founder (and Chief Alchemist!) of the company who has long been a devotee of natural remedies and alternative health practices. David found the onset of arthritis in his 40’s a challenge that made him more and more receptive to using natural remedies and ancient healing to relieve the symptoms. This took him on a path of discovery that led to the creation of Alchemy Gold. The result is a highly potent, punchy and deliciously tangy drink with ginger, citrus and warm spicy overtones.

The recipe is 100% evidence based and uses contemporary western scientific research studies that have influenced the choice and concentration of ingredients used.

Founder David Dunn says,

“Alchemy Gold was born out of my search for something to help with arthritis – which was having a pretty big impact on my life. I spent a long time researching the benefits of turmeric and other natural ingredients and took advice from qualified nutritional scientists and Ayurveda practitioners. In the end, what I’ve created is a natural golden elixir with the potential to help with a whole host of ailments and conditions.

“I believe in the power of Alchemy Gold and in the need for all of us to invest in our present and future health. I am a cabinet maker and joiner by design and I love my craft – which I hope to pursue into my retirement. To do this, I needed to find a remedy for the inflammation in my joints and Alchemy Gold is the result of three years trial and error. I want to share it now with as many people as possible who may also find it a benefit.”

Also attending will be plant-based food and drink brand Gut Instinct. Gut Instinct was born out of a desire to help consumers achieve strong physical and mental health through proper diet and nutrition and, at the same time lessening our carbon footprint. Products include Barista Oat Edition (crafted for coffee); Oatstix Dairy Free Milk Alternative (single serve 10ml portions) and Vegan Mayo (egg free & single serve 9g portions).

Founder Chris Joll explains the background to the product,

“Gut Instinct has been my personal journey of discovery, having been struck down with Chronic Fatigue in my mid-twenties. I learned over several years that the route back to good health was through a better understanding of food. I believe that balance and moderation is the key ingredient to achieving good health and a diet rich in plant-based nutrition is becoming a focal point in day-to-day eating habits.

“Consumers are becoming more mindful of the environmental impact of commercial farming practices and as such, are choosing ‘alternatives’ instead. Animal welfare is another reason why consumers are switching to plant-based diets. Gut health is finally getting the attention it deserves and from our experience, is the absolute key to good overall health. Consuming quality foods that contain beneficial bacteria and prebiotics is a great place to start in order to achieve a healthier and happier you!”

The eighteen Welsh companies, supported by the Welsh Government, attending Food Matters Live include The Parsnipship, Bug Farm Foods, Prima Foods UK, Flawsome! Drinks, Human Food, Rogue Preserves, Just Love Food Company, Peak Supps Ltd UK, Cradoc’s Savoury Biscuits, Welsh Gluten Free Bakery Products, Gut Instinct, Alchemy Gold, DrNashGlycoHealth, Montgomery Natural Spring Water Company, Express Contract Drying, Pennotec, 9Brand Foods Ltd and Food Innovation Wales.

The Minister for Environment, Energy and Rural Affairs, Lesley Griffiths, said,

“Innovation and continued product development is key in moving companies forward. The Welsh Government is committed to supporting our producers, giving them the support to develop new products by embracing new technology and advancements in research and development.”

Other product launches and showcases on the Food and Drink Wales stand at this year’s Food Matters Live include

  • Cradoc’s Savoury Biscuits will be promoting their Beer Bite snacks in jars – a high quality baked snack for sharing
  • Rogue Preserves have launched 2 new marmalades – Espresso Martini Marmalade and Dark and Stormy Marmalade
  • Flawsome! Drinks will be showcasing their sparkling juice range made from 60% pressed fruit from wonky and surplus fruits, completely free from any sugar, that is school compliant
  • Just Love Food Company will be showcasing their vegan chocolate cake – launched in April 2019 and was the first vegan celebration cake on the market
  • Montgomery Water are launching 3 new lines – Stretton Hills, a natural sourced water in 100% recycled bottles; AquaPlus – CBD infused spring water; AquaRoma, a naturally flavoured spring water
  • The Parsnipship will be showcasing their new retail packaging for their vegan products to include Beetroot Bomb, Tandoori Mash-Up, Thai Mash-Up, Mushroom & Peanut Roast, Moroccan Cashew & Walnut Roast
  • Human Food will be launching their three Organic Daily Nutrition Bars, specifically formulated to support a plant-based diet

Food Innovation Wales’s team of experienced experts will also be on hand to offer assistance, providing advice, technical support, innovative ideas and guidance on regulatory and legislative complexities.

Food Matters Live brings together a cross-sector of food and drink specialists with the newest, most exciting food and drink innovations in one inspiring three-day event. More than 16,000 influential professionals are expected to attend this year’s exhibition, featuring over 800 leading organisations – which together highlight the important role every part of the food, drink and nutrition sectors play in developing healthy and ‘better for you’ products.

Come and visit the Food & Drink Wales Pavilion stands G60-H60 at Food Matters Live from 19-20 November 2019 for a range of new and innovative products.

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