More than fifty Food Hawke’s Bay members and guests were treated to an enlightening seminar and presentation from world renowned Food and Beverage expert Professor David Hughes, whose visit to Hawke’s Bay was made possible by sponsor Crowe Horwath.
Professor Hughes has lived and worked in many countries in both hemispheres and has for the past forty years been extensively involved in food and drink, as an international advisory board member with food companies and financial service organisations, and as Emeritus Professor of Food Marketing at the Imperial College London.
With this deep industry knowledge he relayed in his own charismatic style, (even standing on a chair to emphasise a point at one stage) the global food industry issues, particularly consumer trends and developments and where they are heading. He noted that people are demanding more from the products purchased, want it now, demand values versus value and want to know that it has come from a trustworthy source.
Professor Hughes also discussed the increasing volatility in the global food market including climate and weather events, livestock disease, economic downturns in key markets, food safety disasters and political events and the impact these scenarios have.
He believes there are opportunities for artisan producers in Hawke's Bay and New Zealand, by being open and transparent, communicating your story truthfully and knowing who your customer is.
Professor Hughes is much sought-after at international conferences and seminars and with his dry humour that lightened the day’s proceeding without diluting any of the serious content, it’s easy to see why.