Monday, 21 May 2018

WHITIANGA WEATHER

Coromandel Beach House a hit at Auckland Food Show

Coromandel Beach House a hit at Auckland Food Show

The Coromandel’s reputation for producing some of the best food in the country was given a boost with the success of this year’s Beach House stand at the Food Show in Auckland.

The total number of people who visited the four-day event was 31,590, up from 30,088 in 2016. The four exhibitors at the Coromandel Beach House stand say there were times they couldn’t have squeezed more visitors in.

“It went really well,” says Andy Corles of Castle Rock Café in Te Rerenga near Whangapoua. “It was a very successful weekend. We did some good sales and made really good contacts for wholesale as well as sourcing people who want to supply us with product.

“It was a great group of people that we had, and the right blend of different products,” he says.

For the past three years TCDC has been supporting local and home-grown producers by marketing them furhter afield through a promotional stand at The Food Show in Auckland, under the Coromandel Food Collective brand. 

This year the Coromandel Collective was made up of Thames Valley Bacon, Castle Rock Café, 309 Honey and Chocolates Are Us. Visitors sampled a tantalising selection of Coromandel manuka honey, chocolates to order, homemade chutneys and sauces, salami and bacon as part of the tastes on offer.

The group all say they made valuable contacts and plenty of sales as they gave thousands a taste of what’s on offer on the Coromandel.

Thames Valley Bacon was particularly busy throughout with its award-winning freerange product, and co-owner Chanelle Neustroski says the Beach House themed stand was an absolute hit. “It was good having four different exhibitors together because you could hear people commenting their surprise that there was so much variety in homegrown produce available.

“We noticed lots of people taking photos of the stand, and if anything there were times when it was too crowded with people for visitors to get in. It was great.”

Whitianga-based Chocolates Are Us owner Leanne Petersen – another of the exhibitors – says she gained valuable connections showcasing and selling her made to order customised chocolates for businesses, events and promotions.

“There was a great deal of positive feedback about the design and stand and the visitors really did get the beach house feel to it.

“For us it was more worthwhile for marketing than sales, but it was still very worthwhile for sales. I got some really positive leads, especially on the first day when there were representatives of the industry looking for ideas.”

309 Honey’s Susan Williams says the event was a great opportunity to educate people about honey and develop connections as well as meet people they have worked with over the years.

Food Show Event Manager Julia Dietz says there was a high level of media interest in this year's event. “That was thanks to all of the incredible products and services from Food Show exhibitors that made it an exciting place to be.”

Held at the ASB Showgrounds from July 28 to 31, the show featured cooking demonstrations from top celebrity chefs, tastings and sales of product plus the chance to get Coromandel products in the hands of industry, media and food aficionados.

This is the third year that TCDC has featured local food and beverage producers with a targeted campaign aimed at promoting niche products that are grown or produced on the Coromandel.

The project included the development of a beautifully designed Food Trail Guide which is available for visitors to download from the TCDC website or pick up from information centres and Council offices.

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