Welcome to the March Grocery Trader. As usual, this month sees armies of grocery people on the move, going to the big grocery-related exhibitions happening over the next few weeks. So we preview Retail Business Technology Expo and Cards & Payments Solutions at Earls Court from Tuesday 13th-Wednesday 14th, and Food & Drink Expo and related shows at the NEC from Sunday 25th-Tuesday 27th.

You can find us at both shows – at the RBTE on stand 158, and on stand D231 at Food & Drink Expo. Come and see us if you’re there.
We’ve also got exclusive interviews with S&A Foods, DS Smith Packaging and Ipsos Retail Performance.

Retail Business Technology Expo and Cards & Payments Solutions is a unique event, covering end-to-end solutions that address retailers’ needs from supply chain and logistics through to the customer. It combines an exhibition offering an array of solutions and products with a free informative and interactive education programme offering presentations, discussions and workshops, and new for 2012, the Innovation Showcase and RFID zone.

The Food & Drink Expo is under the same roof at the NEC as the National Convenience Show, the International Forecourt & Fuel Equipment Show and Foodex, which covers processing, packaging and logistics.

In our interviews DS Smith Packaging is a leading supplier of Retail Ready Packaging. RRP is now part of the daily shopping experience across a huge range of groceries, with shoppers increasingly interacting with it every time they buy.

As marketers seize the opportunity to integrate RRP design into the mix, to generate sales in store at the point of purchase, DS Smith is collaborating with them to deliver RRP solutions enhancing suppliers’ and retailers’ performance from factory floor to retail store. Recent major project clients include Cadbury, Seven Seas and Seabrooks Crisps, and award-winning packs for GlaxoSmithKline and Nestle.

Ipsos Retail Performance is the new name for Synovate Retail Performance, now part of Ipsos, the global research group, following Ipsos’ October 2011 acquisition of Synovate, which confirms Ipsos as one of the world’s largest research providers. Ipsos Retail Performance’s core products Shopper Count, Shopper Interact and Shopper Engage measure all aspects of the shopper experience from store entry to exit.

In our third interview, we meet S&A Foods’ founder and CEO Perween Warsi CBE, businesswoman, entrepreneur and in 2011, guest panellist on The Apprentice – You’re Fired. Perween started in her kitchen 25 years ago, making samosas for her local takeaway. Her first multiple customer was Asda, and today thanks to Perween Asda is officially the UK’s biggest Indian takeaway, with a dedicated curry takeaway counter in every superstore, and with each Asda curry developed with passion and care by S&A Foods.

Happy reading, and see you at the shows.

Charles Smith, The Grocery Trader

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