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Independent retailers set to flock to Scotland’s Trade Fair in Glasgow this Sunday

Image from Scotland's Trade Fairs

THE Scottish independent retail market is looking forward to returning to some sort of normality as Scotland’s Trade Fairs opens its doors at the SEC, Glasgow this Sunday after more than a two year gap.

With a late surge for stands from new suppliers, and a fevered anticipation from independent gift and food retailers, the Show organisers are expecting a flurry of ordering, sourcing and networking. Scotland’s Trade Fair and Speciality Food Show are the only major gift and food trade buying shows in Scotland this year so are important sourcing arenas for gift shops, tourist outlets, farm shops, delis, restaurants etc.

Show Director Mark Saunders said: “There are clear signs that the retail market is recovering and many independent shops, especially in smaller towns are reporting improving sales as people choose to shop local wherever possible. Retailers are longing to come back and see, feel, taste and smell the products in person, and stock up for the summer season when hopefully we will see a healthy return of tourists too. We are very encouraged by the many new companies exhibiting and the fresh, exciting ranges on offer.”

With February reporting a 6.7% total retail sales growth, against a 1% growth the previous February (according to the British Retail Consortium monthly sales figures). This growth, although across all retail sectors, is ahead of the 3-month average growth of 6.5%. With a surge in non-food retail sales UK wide, there is certainly optimism in the air.

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A highlight of the Show is the Launch Gallery where the Show supports and promotes young, innovative companies under two years old. With a big range of enterprising exhibitors, this is a key focus for many small retailers. This year it is brimming with innovative suppliers such as Tammie Norries, The Shoal, Soap & Mhor, Sea Fern Candles, Scribe & Grow, Janus Edinburgh, By Anna, Woodmill Game, Isle of Cumbrae Distillers and Nuisance Drinks.

In the Speciality Food Show for the first time ever, there is also a great representation from the Scottish regions with five regional stands – Lanarkshire Larder, Tastes of Fife, Food from Argyll, East Lothian Food and Drink and Taste of Orkney. Each stand represents at least 5 small food or drink companies from their area.

Hilary Anderson from Allarburn Farm Shop in Elgin said: “It’s very important to keep ahead of trends and keep bringing fresh ideas into the business. The Show is a great place to see everything new and up and coming under one roof and a great time of year after the busiest quarter to refresh and re-stock.”

Scotland’s Trade Fairs are more than just a Show – in the Talking Shop seminar theatre there is a programme of panel discussions, talks and ‘Nessie’s Den’ to offer retailers extra tips to improve their businesses.

Best Product Awards will be judged by industry experts for the best products in both food and trade on the opening morning of the Show.

Although this Show is not open to consumers, it is a hotbed of creativity, inspiration and gives a flavour of what’s new in the retail market in Scotland.

Register for free entry:

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