The National Restaurant Association is now accepting applications for the fifth annual Food and Beverage (FABI) Awards. Whether it be versatile new ingredients, exciting finished products, progressive delivery systems, or packaging that creates operational efficiencies, the FABI Awards call out those consumable products that inspire operators to develop new menu items, enhance current offerings or rethink their output. This year, the program has evolved to meet changing operator needs, and includes refreshed criteria and an updated panel of expert judges. Recipients of the 2015 FABI Awards will be announced in March and will enjoy significant promotion before, during and following NRA Show 2015, which will be held May 16–19 at Chicago’s McCormick Place.
“Outstanding menu development begins with world-class products,” says John C. Metz, convention chair for NRA Show 2015 and CEO, executive chef and cofounder of Marlow’s Tavern, Aqua Blue, and Sterling Spoon Culinary Management. “Every year, suppliers in the foodservice space introduce food and beverage concepts that help operators develop processes that improve their operations and menus that attract more consumers. The FABI Awards were designed to recognize and celebrate these creations—and promote them to the operator community.”
Suppliers can apply for a FABI Award at Show.Restaurant.org/FABI. FABI Award recipients enjoy exclusive benefits including publicity though the NRA’s media relations efforts, listings in NRA Show marketing and promotional materials, placement on the NRA Show website, and on-site signage directing thousands of operators, distributors, and media professionals to recipients’ booths to demo the products over the course of four days.
The deadline to apply for a 2015 FABI Award is February 18. To be considered, food and beverage products must be introduced or have been introduced by an NRA Show/BAR 2015 exhibiting company to the marketplace between May 1, 2013 and May 16, 2015. These products must demonstrate considerable benefits to foodservice operators as determined by our independent panel of industry experts, including:
· Timothy J. Dietzler, Director of Dining Services, Villanova University
· Christopher Koetke, CEC CCE HAAC, Vice President, The School of Culinary Arts, Kendall College
· John Li, Senior Vice President of Research and Development, Bloomin’ Brands
· Deborah McDaniel, Senior Director, Product Innovation and Development Menu Management, McDonald’s USA, LLC
· Robin Rosenberg, Vice President, Chef de Cuisine, Levy Restaurants
· Bret Thorn, Senior Food Editor, Nation’s Restaurant News
· Jennifer Ziegler, Director of Purchasing Supply Chain Management, Aramark