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05 Feb 2024

Buyer Insights: Peter Alton of Cavendish Foods

Buyer Insights: Peter Alton of Cavendish Foods

In the latest in IFE's Buyer Insights series, Cavendish Food & Beverage Buyer Peter Alton discusses an exciting new coffee industry by-product and the power of face-to-face meetings.

Peter Alton

What are you responsible for buying in your role?

I look after the ambient & frozen side of the business. I procure ambient grocery lines from tinned goods, dried pasta, tea, coffee through to herbs and spices. On the frozen side I look after seafood, bakery and IQF fruit & vegetables.

How do you keep on top of new products and trends?

I monitor the news, read industry publications but the biggest source of information is trade shows such as IFE. You cannot beat face to face meetings with new & existing suppliers for picking up trends and ideas to take back to the business.

Is there a trend or product you’re particularly excited about this year?

There is an exciting new product on the horizon, Cascara or Coffee Cherry a by-product, of the coffee industry using the skin surrounding a coffee bean. It has a flavour somewhere between tea & coffee and is packed with antioxidants and most importantly is sustainable and adds another revenue stream to the coffee farmers. Also, I am seeing more call for Korean Gochujang, Japanese Miso, Ancient Grains and more uses for Blonde Chocolate particularly in plant-based recipes.

What makes a supplier stand out from the crowd?

A supplier needs to show innovation but also needs to demonstrate a knowledge of the market they are pitching for.  If a supplier can show me something new that adds value to my business I’m interested. If a supplier can save me money, offer great customer service, product development and also offer a sustainable solution I am keen to listen.

Why are you planning to attend IFE in 2024?

To meet new and existing suppliers and engage with the people who know their products. To explore new trends and ideas from all across the industry and to expand my knowledge so I am informed and best placed to meet my own customer’s needs.

Click here to register for IFE 2024, part of Food, Drink & Hospitality Week. 


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