All the world’s a stage, Shakespeare wrote in his play As You Like It. These days, all the world’s food and drink can be found in Britain’s supermarkets, Co-ops and bigger convenience stores without any drama, just an ever-widening range of products and cuisines and an ever-improving depth of representation. And “World Food” is becoming a destination aisle for more and more of us, both people from the incoming communities concerned and bold Brits who like to experiment with tastes and flavours.
We’re fast approaching the point where Indian food stops being seen as “ethnic food,” with all the unfamiliarity that implies, and more as something approachable for everyone. Curry is now Britain’s favourite cuisine, and as a nation we are all increasingly confident about exploring the possibilities in our local Indian restaurants.
The major food retailers have been looking for a long time at how to get the maximum leverage in retail terms from our growing love for the tastes and flavours of the world. We discover these online, on our holidays and our travels, when we eat in restaurants, and through the efforts of our favourite TV cooks and celebrity chefs. A classic example is Caribbean food and drink. Once only to be found in local community shops, Caribbean food and drink products are coming of age in 2014, highlighted by their growing presence on mainstream fixtures in major UK grocery stores under the stewardship of Grace Foods UK, who we interview as part of this feature, and whose Encona Sauces, Grace Aloe Refresh soft drinks and Nurishment flavoured milk are recognised as flagship brands for their categories, not just in the world section.
Firmly established as the market leaders in terms of authenticity, Grace Foods supplies a tasty 37% by value of all Caribbean food and drink sold in the UK, and continues to innovate with new products. Grace Foods are also committed to stimulating the market with exciting promotions and initiatives. Among these high profile activities, in the run up to this summer’s Notting Hill Carnival Grace Foods is once again staging Caribbean Food Week, the UK’s biggest celebration of Caribbean food and drink, which runs from Monday 18 August to Monday 25 August. Now in its third year, the 2014 Caribbean Food Week promises to be even bigger than ever, and contribute to a wider appreciation of this part of the world of ethnic food and drink.