Unlike last year, there will be no booking system for the appointments. Instead, suppliers will be seen on a first come, first served basis to allow more companies to take advantage of the initiative.
Global director for wine at Tesco, Dan Jago, said last year’s activity had been a “huge success”, despite the multiple listing only one new wine as a result.
However, a spokeswoman confirmed “a number of follow up meetings” had subsequently taken place, focusing on packaging formats and emerging regions.
She told OLN: “A number of products and larger projects are still being worked on with the intention of launching this year with key suppliers.”
This year, the retailer’s entire team of buyers, including Jago and senior product development manager Laura Jewell MW, will be stationed in a Gallery room, on the first floor of the Excel exhibition centre, on Tuesday, May 21.
Producers can showcase new products, product innovations or other business opportunities.
Jago said: “Last year’s event was a huge success. We held more than 120 meetings and saw some great products and innovative thinking. However there were a number of visitors, who for one reason or another, were unable to meet the team.
“This year, by running the day on a first come, first served basis we hope to get through every visitor who would like to speak to the team more efficiently and speedily.
“By hosting the tastings up in the gallery we also expect a more relaxed environment with open meetings rather than behind closed doors.
“The Tesco team will be ready to see suppliers from 9.30am, so if anyone vis- iting the fair has something exciting they would like to showcase, whether it is a new wine or product innovation, we would be delighted to see you.”