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Stepping into the Den; what it takes to win over a Lion

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Scott Stuckmann, business executive officer Nestlé Professional, is one of the panel of industry leaders at this year’s inaugural Lions’ Den at Fine Food Australia. Open House spoke with Stuckmann about what makes a successful pitch and insights on innovation trends in foodservice.

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Nestlé Professional’s Scott Stuckmann is on the panel of experts at this year’s Lions’ Den at Fine Food Australia.

New and emerging companies will be pitching their ideas to the panel, with only one walking away with entry into the FSAA Understanding Foodservice program.

There is a diverse range of pitches in the Lions’ Den – what will you be looking for?

Many factors determine the success or failure of pitch; but keeping it simple is a solid start point. The big idea. The market. The business model. Less is always more. Present in a way that’s to the point. Take a tune in or tune out approach. If you can’t win over a Lion in a few minutes, chances are you’ve lost the interest and confidence in your idea. If we can’t grasp the concept quickly, we’ll likely assume your customers won’t either.

Is it about the pitch or the idea?

Coming up with creative ideas is easy; selling them to strangers is hard!

What has been the biggest innovation in foodservice in the last decade?

Gluten free has changed the landscape. We saw and acted on this quickly and we continue to embrace it with over 40 products available today. Now it’s mainstream, but at launch 10 years ago it was pioneering.

Do you think the foodservice industry is naturally innovative or can it do better?

Very innovative! Many trends start and gain momentum in foodservice, especially on the restaurant side. But, I believe manufacturers must be faster to help fuel that innovation in the future.

What innovation have you seen in practice at Nestlé Professional?

Our ‘one step smoothies’ that we call easy ice blends were recently introduced. frozen concentrate of fruits, pre-measured that you just add water, and blend. Any operator can offer great smoothies that consumer’s love.

The Lions’ Den will take place at the Talking Food Stage on Level 1 of the ICC Sydney on Wednesday, September 13, at 2pm.

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  • Published: 7 months ago on September 12, 2017
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