The success of the First European Sandwich Show has proved beyond doubt that this peculiarly English snack has a much wider appeal.

From the moment the doors opened on the first day at the Palais de Congres, Paris, the visitor attendance surpassed all expectations. The aisles were buzzing throughout the two day show with a final attendance figure of just over 3,000.

David Wilkins, managing director of DEW Events, organisers of the show said: "I am delighted with the success and acceptance of the first European Sandwich Show. The attendance was terrific and surpassed all expectations, even ours! Nearly every major sandwich manufacturer in France was exhibiting with us as well as from Italy, Holland and the UK. This sets a precedence for the future and rapid development of the show in Paris."

Visitors attended from virtually every European country, Australia, South Africa, Japan, Algeria, Brazil, Hungary, Israel, Republic Of South Korea, Lebanon, Martinique, Monaco, Morocco, Qatar, Senegal, Turkey and USA.

Jim Winship, director of both the British Sandwich Association and the recently formed European Association of Sandwich Makers, was pleased with attendance at the seminars, which ran concurrently with the exhibition: "We were overwhelmed by the interest in sandwiches from buyers from across Europe who visited the show in Paris. The response and the interest in the show demonstrates the huge opportunity for the sandwich industry to develop across the markets of Europe, following the lead already established in the UK where sandwiches now account for almost £3.5bn each year.

"The show certainly vindicates our argument that the sandwich industry offers the UK food industry one of its greatest export opportunities ever - provided that government and the companies involved grasp that opportunity."

The European Sandwich Show represents a successful export of the Total Sandwich Show, a concept founded by David Wilkins of DEW Events in 1998. Commenting on the idea of a show for a wider market, Wilkins said: "In the UK the market is already worth almost £3.5bn and is forecast to grow by ten per cent per annum over the next three years. When you add 300 million Europeans to this already massive market, you can see why people are so excited about the huge potential of the European sandwich industry."

The European Sandwich Show, Paris is a joint venture between the British Sandwich Association, the European Association of Sandwich Makers and DEW Events. In addition, FFB Communication in France, whose expertise in the French and British food industry is firmly established, also played a key role.