March 3, 2024

2023 edition of TickEat held in Milton Keynes

The 2023 edition of TickEat, the United Kingdom’s first travel conference for food and drink brands wanting to know more about how to supply into the travel sector, was held on October 26 at the Marshall Arena in Milton Keynes, England.

Participants were invited to arrive at the Stadium MK, the home ground of MK Dons football club and the location of the indoor Marshall Arena, to attend a networking event and dinner on October 25. After dinner a quiz was held, testing participants’ knowledge of international food and drink.

Attendees had the opportunity to overnight in the DoubleTree Milton Keynes hotel, located within the stadium. Some of the guestrooms look onto the pitch which hosted the England team’s final game before the 2023 Women’s World Cup. Staying overnight meant that participants had only a short distance to cover to arrive for morning coffee ahead of the TickEat buyer event and travel conference.  

Stadium MK’s Marshall Arena opened in 2014 and is capable of hosting up to 5,000 participants during events. Supplier stalls were ranged around the main hall, which has an area of more than 2,500 square metres. Desks were arranged in the centre of the hall to host speed-dating-style meetings between buyers and suppliers.

Buyer and supplier meetings during the 2023 edition of TickEat, held at the Marshall Arena in Milton Keynes.
Buyer and supplier meetings during the 2023 edition of TickEat, held at the Marshall Arena in Milton Keynes.

Panel sessions and interviews

A series of panel sessions and interviews were held during TickEat. Following a welcome address by the event sponsor, contract packing specialist WePack, Ed Pakenham, Global Managing Director of MileOne Group hosted a buyer panel with representatives from DFDS, LNER and Virgin Atlantic.

Keynote speaker Gary Mesiano, the founder of Mezza Brands, discussed travel food services and how businesses can get started targeting opportunities within the travel sector.

The sessions continued until the networking drinks that marked the end of the 2023 edition of TickEat.

Onboard Hospitality was a media partner for TickEat. The Nourish Awards, Quality Food Awards and Speciality & Fine Food Fair were also partners of TickEat.

TickEat was organised by a team headed by Heerum Fleary, who has almost 20 years’ experience as a food and beverage buyer.