Leading UK retailers are signed up to attend an annual Food and Drink Meet the Buyer event, taking place this year on 11 October 2011 at the Excel Centre, Darlington, County Durham.
The event is organised by independent business support group, Business to Business; and supported by Compete North East and NEPO (North Eastern Purchasing Organisation) and Taste North East.
Confirmed buyers include Asda, Sainsbury’s, the National Trust, James Hall (Spar), NHS supply chain, Nisa Today’s and Pride of Place.
Representatives from the London 2012 Olympic and Para-Olympic Games are also attending, looking to source suppliers for the event.
Local buyers will also be participating, including the North East Procurement Organisation, Hilton Hotel, Quayside Wholesale, Durham County Council and Sunderland City Council.
Amanda Scott, National Trust retail operations manager Yorkshire and North East, said: “We’re looking for new, individual suppliers and this is a great way of meeting them. Across the country, but in the North East in particular, there are loads of fantastic, unique, suppliers who just don’t know how to get their products in to the marketplace.
“These events are a fantastic way for them to showcase their stuff. And sometimes you come across a real gem.”
Businesses attending the event meet the buyers in pre-booked, private, face-to-face meetings, to discuss their product ranges, with a view to securing deals.
The 2009 event is reported to have generated more than £3.8m of business contracts. According to organisers, it is this success that has attracted buyers looking to secure new suppliers for significant contracts.
Amanda Nichol, Business to Business, said: “These events are hugely popular. They are an incredibly time-efficient and successful way for buyers and suppliers to meet and do business. The high calibre of buyers that are attending is a testament to just how successful Meet the Buyer is for them.”