World Pastry Cup Ups The Ante

Italy has won the 14th edition of the Coupe du Monde de la Pâtisserie, held as part of international hospitality and food service event, Sirha.

Once again, baking and pastry enthusiasts from around the world have gathered in Lyon, France, for a chance to network, compete and find out about the industry’s best new products.

Twenty-one teams made up of a pastry chef, a chocolate specialist and an ice-cream maker competed in front of almost 3000 supporters in an exceptional atmosphere.

Captained by Emmanuele Forcone, the Italians were awarded the trophy after 10 hours of intense competition, with the judges saying the team demonstrated audacity, creativity and innovation. This is the seventh time Italy has made the podium.

Team Japan won the silver trophy, with the US team a close third.

Special prizes were also given out to outstanding competitors, with the Guatemalan team taking home the “Team Spirit” prize for its solidarity, while the “Best Promotional Campaign” was awarded to Switzerland.

“This 2015 edition of the Coupe du Monde de la Pâtisserie was absolutely dazzling in its modernity and virtuosity! The contest rules were tougher this year and aimed to offer an even more exciting show,” a spokesperson for Sirha said.

“The International Organising Committee introduced a new challenge for the candidates: in addition to the artistic piece made of sugar, composed for at least 50 per cent of drawn and blown sugar, for the first time the candidates were required to integrate a whole block of sculpted Valrhona chocolate to their chocolate creation.

“This resulted in the most exceptional sweet gourmet masterpieces. They also had to work with two blocks of ice of identical dimensions in order to present an artistic creation made of sculpted ice.”

These technical challenges came on top of demanding taste and aesthetic requirements, judged by an expert team of industry professionals and previous winners.

A springboard for trends and products

With more than 80 per cent of products presented at the 2013 exhibition launching on the market the following year, Sirha is known as a springboard for new products.

At the exhibition, qualitative and quantitative analysis was carried out on nearly 350 food products, beverages and pieces of equipment, with enjoyment, practicality and health benefits key criteria.

“Enjoyment involves breaking the rules,” a spokesperson for Sirha product analysis said, acknowledging around 3000 exhibitors attended, showcasing their best products and services.

“The most popular pastries are being developed in hybrid formats, with the single aim of making them even more exciting, unpredictable and mouth-watering.”

Origin claims, particularly ultra-localised source information, as well as ‘clean food’ were highlighted as being of particular importance for today’s consumer.

The rising popularity of street food was also discussed, with audiences posed the question, “how can you eat a slice of cream cake while walking along a city street?”.

“Sirha aims to stimulate ideas to help food service professionals keep one step ahead, which is why there was a Food Studio, a laboratory brimming with ideas, at the heart of the exhibition,” the spokesperson said.

The event will return to Lyon in 2017, with a smaller international trade fair for food set for Budapest next May.

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