Categories Education Winter Fancy Food Show (WFFS) 2020: Partner Country ITALY, Moscone Convention Center, San Francisco, California 18

Winter Fancy Food Show (WFFS) 2020: Partner Country ITALY, Moscone Convention Center, San Francisco, California 18 /media/flashcomm?action=mediaview&context=normal&id=7838
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San Francisco, CA (January 19 to 21, 2020): The Specialty Food Association (established in 1952) held its annual 2020 Winter Fancy Food Show at the Moscone Convention Center North and South Hall. For the first time, the Winter edition of the FFS had a partner country: ITALY. Over the years, only the Summer edition of FFS had a partner country therefore 2020 was the first year for the WFFS. This fact was emphasized throughout the three (3) day show with cooking demonstrations of various Italian specialities at the connector between North and South Halls called: Taste It! There were seven (7) takeaways from the 2020 WFFS: 1. Plant based specialty food products is going strong over the past 5 years; 2. Specialty beverages are becoming a dominant force in the market; 3. Young consumers are shifting away from local supermarkets for meals; 4. Reduction of packaging and food waste are becoming important topics of discussion; 5. The C-store channel becomes an underemphasized market for specialty food items; 6. Food service needs are becoming more customized in the last 5 years and finally, 7. Breakfast time is now arising as an important occassion for specialty food items. The SFA also celebrated the 2020 Leadership Awards annually on Sunday evening, January 19, 2020 to honor influetial and innovative entrepreneurs who are transforming the way the specialty food industry does business. Prior to the presentation of the awards, a Keynote speeh was given by author and lecturer, Ms. Amanda Little from Vanderbilt University in Nashville, TN on her recent bestseller: The Fate of Food, What We'll Eat in a Bigger, Hotter, Smarter World. This was a five year adventure into the lands, minds and future of sustainable food. She is a professor of Journalism and Science Writing at Vanderbilt. Thereafter, the 2020 Leadership Awards were presented in the following order by incumbent SFA President, Mr. Phil Kafarakis, since 2016: 1. BUSINESS LEADERSHIP: Ms. Lorenza Pasetti of VOLPI: Since 1902,Volpi opened in St. Louis, MO with a focus on the Italian craft of dry-curing meat. Ms. Pasetti became the President of Volpi in 2002, 100 years after its founding. Over the last decade and half, Volpi expanded if offerings into the national marketplace under her watch; 2. VISION: Ms. Natalie Shmulik of THE HATCHERY: Ms. Natalie Shmulik graduated from Boston University majoring in Gastronomy. Thereafter, she became the CEO of The Hatchery: a non-profit food and beverage incubator located in the West side of Chicago. The Hatchery supports local entrepreneurs with start-up funds and resources to build businesses. This was a joint venture between two Chicago non-profit organizations: Accion and the Industrial Council of Neonwest Chicago. Ms. Shmulik started as a consultant in 2015 and became CEO in 2018 resulting to date a total of 150 local jobs being created; and finally 3. CITIZENSHIP: Ms. Elizabeth Stein of PURELY ELIZABETH: After completing her studies at the New York Institute for Integrative Nutrition, she practiced as a holistic health counselor. Ten years ago, she launced her own business called Purely Elizabeth mixes focusing and promoting her own nutrition practice. Her best seller is the Purely Elizabeth Granola. Her company is a certified B Corporation using only non-GMO organic ingredients to promote a healthy specialty foods through sustainability and transparency. The WFFS 2020 show was also highlighted by the Big Idea Stage Schedule which a range of topics to include: Plant-based Dairy alternatives to CBD in Food and Beverages. These two topics will clearly impact the Specialty food industry in the next decade to come and it is a matter of time to determine to what extent it will do so. Yearly exhibits from Domestic and International distributors highlighted this year's show to include: Japan's Wagyu beef, France's Bayonne Ham and Spain's Iberico Pork just to name a few. (All photographs and text by: Rene Zamora, Reporter/Photographer, Newsmexx TV, Henderson, Nevada USA).

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