One of the biggest international ranges of meat substitute, Fry’s brings to VegFestUK London 2014 what they do best
As one of the media partners of VegFestUK London, taking place at London Olympia on September 27th and 28th, we are doing one special series of interviews with celebrities and special guests that will be speaking or performing during the event and also brands that will be exposing their vegan products there.
Born in South Africa in 1991 as a Fry’s Family kitchen – cooking vegetarian options for their family – Fry’s Vegetarian has become an international success. Their products are broadly available in the UK and it’s also easy to get them here in Ireland and my family is a happy consumer of their meat free products.
How did Fry’s came to the UK? Could you tell us how the idea of the distributing their products was born?
Pat and I used to run a vegan health food shop and we stumbled across the FRY’S brand then – we started stocking it in our shop and it sold incredibly well, so when we heard that FRY’S in SA were looking for a UK importer we jumped at the chance – that was in 2001 – the rest, as they say, is history!
What are your best seller products?
At the moment retail sales of our FRY’S Nuggets are going through the roof – closely followed by the FRY’S Chicken-Style Burgers and FRY’S Schnitzels… as for the fastest growth, our FRY’S Tenders are whizzing off the scale… for Foodservice (3663 and Creed) our FRY’S Mince and FRY’S Traditional Burgers are the best sellers.
Your products are soy based. Do you have plans to expand the range including new ingredients or soy-free products?
There are some soya free products in the FRYS range – we haven’t imported them into the UK yet – at the present time we are running to keep up with how quickly the rest of the range is selling.
You have been a big support of VegFestUK not just in London but also in Brighton and Bristol. What you like more about the festival?
Until this year, when we had a family wedding, we have attended every one of the Bristol VegFest shows… there is always a great atmosphere at these events… they are popular and lively. We are huge fans of all the work Tim Barford does – his energy and enthusiasm know no bounds – and this is reflected in the shows he organises – it’s very infectious and we always have fun promoting FRY’S at his events!
How you – as a brand and as people – see the spread of veganism in the world today?
As I mentioned before, our business is booming – we recently started supplying Ocado and they have been selling out. The demand for vegan food is definitely on the increase – people are realising the benefits of a well balanced plant based diet – it’s better for the planet, animals and personal health. On a personal level, it’s great that vegan products are becoming so widely available – delicious brands such as Vegusto “cheeses” and Vego chocolate are keeping us very happy indeed!
Can we expect anything new from Fry’s in September in London?
We don’t have anything different at the moment, but FRY’S in South Africa are always working on developing new products… watch this space!