Fi Europe returns

It was a joyful return to the city of Paris, as I attended the ingredients trade show, Fi Europe, a couple of weeks ago in Paris with my saleswoman Samantha Bull. Many steps were taken in the just two days, and I do feel we came away with a lot to look at in the coming year in ingredients. The aisles were really buzzing with the many visitors, who all seemed quite relieved that they could meet at last in person.

I think the best stands were those who sought to give to the customer a one-stop place or way to provide ingredients for their products, but also you got the feeling that the exhibitors were learning as much from each other as seeking to sell their products to the attendees. What also struck me is that while plant-based ingredients and products are a real thing, it is helping to inspire dairy based companies to up their game, and to tell their stories better to the public.

Let’s face it, the dairy ingredient is the one plant-based rivals try to match with. The biology of dairy products is their story, and it’s a nutritious, good one. I think any maker of pea protein would grab for the bio-availability of dairy calcium, vitamins and protein that is inherent in our base ingredient. If they could make a plant-based drink like that without extensive processing or adding loads of ingredients, they would.

As we all know, the cow is an amazing creature at the centre of our industry. She produces milk from indigestible grass and can provide livelihoods for one billion people on the planet, either directly or indirectly. She keeps rural communities going, and 117 million farms on the planet. Another thing to be thankful for in this season.

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