The 2020 Europain Show closed last week. Our Muse Food Concept for the EuropainLab successfully managed to inspire visiting bakers from all around the world. The 3 keywords that embody the Food Concept developed by our Agency and implemented by students from the Cordon Bleu Institute, are “Artisanal, Vegetal & Digital”. This bold 330m2 initiative set up by GL Events for this major professional bakery-patisserie show was sponsored by a large number of partners including Moulins Viron, Resto France Experts, CostaGroup and Cash Systèmes Industrie… to mention but a few. The Muse stand genuinely produced, on-site, all the food sold during the 4 day show, in the same way as a genuine bakery would.
It was the fruit of major effort and commitment by this global team of experts which showcased how new digital trends can be implemented. These included:
• The use of edible QR-Codes on products, to provide visitors with information on nutritional values per 100g, ingredients and allergens. Anticipating consumer needs is one of the things, the retail outlets of tomorrow need to take on board. The ability to give customers information about the breads, cakes or snacks they buy will soon become common place. We owe it to our consumers to be transparent.
• Cashless payment systems enabled us to make this work, at a trade show where students acted as staff, without having to spend any time at the end of the day ‘cashing up’. The students were able to act quite naturally in their capacity as roving members of staff, equipped with a small tablet, mini printer and payment terminal, issuing advice on the food offerings. Not only did they spend their time in a different way with customers, giving advice and explaining this Food Concept, but it also meant that there were no endless queues as people were able to pay directly at the counters they chose produce from.
• A click & collect order station. Those who tried out Muse on the first day, returned ordering their lunches directly from the click & collect stations. The desire to do away with queues and speed up flows involves the use of automatic payment terminals. It did not, however minimize any of the discussions with the students, experts or public in any way. In fact, quite the opposite.
So what food did we have on offer?
We developed the bakery menu with chef Olivier Boudot and his students. They started work on it last summer (2019). All products were tried and tested right up to the start of the Show, following the same process as any genuine new food concept (try-outs, technical product sheets, cost price, choice of materials, ingredient selection, testing, technical modifications, approval, etc). The decision to work only with seasonal produce was unanimous and the quality of produce quickly became our guiding principle. We approved it for Muse, but producing a seasonal menu does not make the food any less tasty or appealing. You may not be aware, but working with seasonal produce is a genuine trend in bakery/patisserie.
We didn’t overlook the latest trends for vegetable products: vegetal breads, vegetarian sandwiches and slices, all served in our large lounge equipped with a plant wall.
We also added another dimension to our food concept to make sure it appealed fully to Millennials – waste elimination & environmental considerations! Unsold products were sold via the TooGoodToGo app; some products were made from croissant pastry scraps (mini savoury cakes) or with the previous day’s bread (pains perdus), or dried beer dregs (chouquettes). All the waste was sorted and weighed on the stand to be as lifelike as possible.
For information, the Top 3 selling products were: the croque-monsieur, the ham sandwich and the tarte tatin (from our selection of 3 slices, 3 sandwiches, 4 pastries, 4 take-away cakes, 5 viennoiseries, a soup and ten different varieties of bread)! And the most popular options were the lunch specials, with customers spending €9 per person on average.
What about its orchestration?
Our Agency developed all the sets for the Muse stand and produced all the branding and signage. Muse was the winning project, devised by students at the Cordon Bleu Institute in Paris, in a competition involving three multi-disciplinary teams, all coached by Sylvie Amar and a jury of professional bakers (in July 2019). The Agency team orchestrated the project, re-qualifying all of the strengths of the Food Concept, emphasizing some of them to give the project greater depth. Help from all of the partners was essential to ensure that products could really be sold in good conditions and for our experimental bakery to see the light of day. The idea of doing away with glass cabinets was collective: the desire to remove the barrier between products and customers was very tempting. Inspired by bakers, Muse therefore saw the emergence of self-service mono-product kiosks (hot or cold products). A new customer experience tested live during this new concept.
How was the production area structured?
RFE helped to build a showcase production zone that covered snacks, breads and patisserie products that conformed to health & safety industry regulations. Special tours were organized during the afternoon to convey the right information and show off this modern-day lab.
We have of course improvements to suggest in every aspect of this experience, but our objective was not to export a turnkey concept, but to inspire visitors. And in this, we were hugely successful. It was a wonderful experience that fuelled much discussion on these topics with students, professionals and designers – and also the desire to do things differently… Roll on the next Food Concept!
A joint production between GL Events, the Cordon Bleu Institute and Sylvie Amar & Partners
List of partners: Moulins Viron, Alvene, Andros, Bragard, Bread, Cafés Richard, Cash Systemes Industrie, Codigel, Costagroup, Elixia, Emerson, Enodis, Gecoma, Hobart, JAC, Maltivor, Metro, MIWE, Panem, Rational, RFE, Robot Coupe, SASA Demarle, Scaritech, Sofinor, Solia, Sorema, Victor&Cie, VMI.
A 4-day sale & production facility
80 students working in shifts throughout the day, supervised by 8 members of teaching staff
330 m2 including a 120m2 sampling area, a 70m2 sales area and 100m2 production area.
See the replay of the 66 Minutes report on M6