From January 26-30, the 19th Sirha will be held in Lyon, France, boasting an additional hall this year offering an extra 10,000 square meters to accommodate 3,000 exhibitors and brands covering 12 sectors. This means the 200,000 professionals visiting from all over the world will enjoy an even broader and more varied offering.

‘We are seeing a strong rise in the number of international exhibitors who will actually represent one quarter of the exhibitors at Sirha 2019,” explains Marie-Odile Fondeur, managing director of Sirha. “Over the years, Sirha has established itself as a unique trade show in the food service and hospitality industry and has become a major event for food professionals all over the world. Indeed, the most prestigious players in gastronomy today and tomorrow come to meet and exchange at the largest gathering of chefs on the planet.”

Sirha features 21 contests representing all trades (such as cheese specialists, butchers, bakers, pastry chefs, baristas) in which participants illustrate the excellence of their skills and demonstrate new techniques and new ideas. The contests also include the finals of the Bocuse d’Or, Coupe du Monde de la Pâtisserie — celebrating its 30th anniversary in 2019 — and International Catering Cup.

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Created in 1989 by pastry chef Gabriel Paillasson, the Coupe du Monde de la Pâtisserie spotlights young pastry talents among 21 teams representing 21 countries, including the United States. Composed of three specialists for chocolate, sugar and ice sculptures, the teams will compete during 10 hours in a series of imposed tests. A jury composed of top international figures in the pastry world will judge their technical skills, knowhow and creativity.

This year, for the first time the teams will be required to create a fully vegan dessert, in keeping with the latest consumer trends. The Coupe du Monde de la Pâtisserie is engaged alongside French association UNAF for the preservation of bees via the “Abeille sentinelle de l’environnement” scheme.

Reaching new heights in pastry

Pastry chefs have at their fingertips a great opportunity to expand the scope of what it is possible to achieve in gastronomy and reach out to vast numbers of people, bringing them a share of the dream. The participants in the Coupe du Monde de la Pâtisserie have integrated this extraordinary ability to surprise and transcend the ordinary when they perform the 10 hours of tests that drive them to push their limits.

“This contest requires that we question everything we have learned in order to find the minutest detail that might make the difference. Working on taste of course, but also on the visual aspects and the fragrances to offer instant emotion,” says Philippe Rigollot, president of the International Organising Committee.

The Coupe du Monde de la Patisserie is recognized as the world’s most prestigious pastry competition. Every two years in Lyon, France, the 21 best national teams are invited to participate in this two-day event during which the competitors create stunning chocolate, sugar, and ice carving centerpieces. The goal of this competition is to promote both art and pastries. Each team must present a chocolate entremet (French for cake), an entremet glace (Frozen ice cream torte), and a plated dessert.

The United States of America is the only country that has participated in all previous editions of the Coupe du Monde de la Pâtisserie. Team USA won bronze medals in 1995, 1999, 2005 and 2015, the silver medal in 1997, and the gold medal in 2001.

The Coupe du Monde de la Pâtisserie takes after the image of the pastry sector which values it promotes: a dynamic trade that is always keen to push back the limits, seeking out the latest innovations and adapting to recent consumer trends. It is also attentive to changes in perception in the social environment. So naturally, the contest could not ignore the preoccupations in terms of environmental preservation and wellbeing that also concern the food and catering industry.

For the first time in the history of the Coupe du Monde de la Pâtisserie, the dessert presented on plate will be 100% vegan. That is to say, no animal products or products of animal origin must enter into its composition. This is a new requirement that will challenge the participants’ creativity and is in line with the concerns of today’s consumers. “There’s a real demand for this type of preparation that uses exclusively ingredients of vegetal origin” stresses Philippe Rigollot.

Another test that is also in line with the preservation of our environment: the preparation of a chocolate dessert using a biscuit that must be made with honey. This test is the result of a partnership with French Association of Bee-Keepers (UNAF) that is engaged for the preservation of bees and the essential issues of biodiversity and pollination. “We thought it would be a good idea to use the reputation of the Coupe du Monde de la Pâtisserie to promote such an important and noble cause as the preservation of bees, because they are the sentinels or our environment,” explains Rigollot.

Coupe du Monde de la Patisserie


Chocolatier Team USA 2019

Chef Olivier Saintemarie is the Executive Pastry Chef at JBI Inc., Les Chefs de France in Lake Buena Vista, Florida. He serves as the Executive Pastry Chef at the French Pavillon at Epcot, leading in 2014 the opening of the company’s brand new 7,000-square-foot bakery and production kitchen. His team of 35 takes care of bread and pastries for “Les Halles” Bakery shop, “Les Chefs de France,” the 220-seat Brasserie style restaurant, “Monsieur Paul,” the 110-seat fine dining and “L’Artisan des Glaces”, the artisan style ice cream shop.

Sugar Artist Team USA 2019

Chef Nicolas Chevrieux brings a wealth of talent as Executive Pastry Chef at Maison Kayser USA, where he creates elegant French pastries, often re-interpreting classics by using new techniques or novel flavor combinations, inspired by his numerous travels around the world. He oversees a team of 60 pastry cooks in charge of executing delicious French pastries with the finest ingredients and impeccable technique.

Ice Carver Team USA 2019

A Philippines native based in Marietta, Georgia, Victor Dagatan works as a food artist and pastry cook at the Ritz Carlton Hotel and an ice carver in Atlanta. His achievements include a gold medal at the 2009 ACF Ice-Carving Championships in Atlanta, silver medal at the 2010 National Ice Carving Association World Championships, and bronze medal at 2011 World Ice Art Championships.

Chef Jordan Snider, Executive Pastry Chef at the Fairmont Grand del Mar in San Diego, was selected as the alternate for Team USA 2019.

Food at its best

A survey by Sirha partner research institute NPD shows that all indicators are green for out-of-home catering in main European countries where all markets are on the up. The market for catering and snacking is strong and is stepping up its pace in a favorable environment driven by quick service, fast food and fast casual, new times of the day such as breakfast and afternoon snacks, and the boom in Food Tech that boost sales for independent operators.

In this environment, the innovations revealed by Sirha and its exhibitors play an essential driving role. They enable players in the food service industry to anticipate on the demand, rethink their offers or processes, and satisfy more efficiently their customers’ expectations to boost their sales.

Further, digital technologies are changing our relationship to time with respect to anticipation and instant gratification. The concept of trend no longer holds over time as the pace of mutation is too fast. A handful of recognized opinion leader “trendsetters” are replaced with hundreds of “influencers” boasting instant exposure and visibility, offering a multitude of propositions.

New tools to understand the near future are being developed, however, thanks to the huge mass of data available on the internet, with portals collecting information pertaining to our usages and personal preferences. Emergences are replacing trends as an actual modelling of weak signals. Emergences consecrate the new motivations that arise from constructive tensions between two needs or motivations that initially seemed opposed.

Three “emergences’ can be given as examples:

EMERGENCE 1 — ECOACTION Consumers are driven by a spirit of resistance seeking to preserve our fragile planet but are becoming progressively aware that only technology may be able to restore the damaged environment.

EMERGENCE 2 — BODYBALANCE People want to balance their health through food but without compromising on the pleasure of food or putting themselves through a restrictive diet.

EMERGENCE 3 — VERNACULAR 2.0 The memory of pleasure associated with food is created during our infancy and is essential to the development of taste, associating ancestral recipes with industrial products. Cultures have become fickle and traditions are chosen.

Global food service solutions

The Sirha World Cuisine Summit embodies the motivation of Sirha to offer ever more solutions to both exhibitors and visitors. For 2019, Sirha has imagined an exclusive event with top level international contributors in order to put into perspective the fundamental issues in the catering and food service industry.

Issues concerning the quality and selection of products are among the first mentioned by consumers: they feel responsible for what they order and what they eat, as well as for the consequences on their health and the environment in general. As a result, demand for vegetal and local food is soaring and affects all types of catering as well as the suppliers. The focus on health does not preclude the pleasure of eating, as consumers want to do their bodies good while eating “good and natural,” regardless of the type of catering establishments and region of the world. Finally, today’s consumers and chefs are now in constant contact so as to better enjoy, avoid the irritants and offer a smoother eating experience.

Through three concepts of pop up restaurants created in partnership with Institut Paul Bocuse and inspired by the Food Service Vision 7 influences, 6e Sens proposes a real immersive experience. Sirha visitors who eat at these ephemeral eateries will experience the latest trends in the sector and will discover the novelties in table ware, dining room design and arrangement: sources of inspiration for their own establishments.

Innovation awards

The Sirha Innovation Awards crown 12 innovations in the food service sector in general: eight awards in the category Products-Beverages-Ingredients and four in the Appliances-Equipment-Concepts category. To enter their products in the contest, exhibitors proposed innovations that are recent and exhibited at the show, but they must also prove that their product/appliance/service represents a breakthrough (complete novelty) or is an incremental innovation (significant improvement).

A special Green award for a product or appliance featuring a clearly beneficial advantage in terms of sustainable development may also be awarded by the jury. The prize ceremony will take place on Jan. 27, 2019, and the winning products and appliances will be displayed during the Sirha in the dedicated Innovation Awards 2019 section.