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Publisher's Viewpoint - Robin Ashton

Publisher's Viewpoint - Robin AshtonFounding partner Robin Ashton, president and publisher, is a true industry veteran in spite of is boyish appearance, he's covered foodservice since 1978, and E&S exclusively since 1982, as an editor and publisher at several magazines.


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Why A New MUFES?

August 01, 2010

One of the most fun—and most useful—things we do here at Foodservice Equipment Reports is our biennial Multiunit Foodservice Equipment Symposium. Since we hosted the first one in 2002, we’ve held this meeting five times with a couple simple goals: 1) To help the most sophisticated operator buyers and specifiers of foodservice equipment and supplies in the world keep up-to-date with the very latest technologies and best practices, and 2) To give them a chance to interact with their peers and significant suppliers.

It’s all about unique, world-class content. With major help from our friends at Pacific Gas & Electric Co.’s Food Service Technology Center, we offer the best content anywhere for our market. And it’s also about plenty of space and time for “hallway chat.”

MUFES has mostly attracted commercial operators, not for any particular reason other than money. A lot of it simply has to do with budgets: Commercial operators can justify the travel and seminar fee because what they learn at the meeting saves their organizations money and improves their processes and “use of capital.” Another factor is the buying cycle. While chains buy E&S all the time, many noncommercial operators undertake big projects intermittently.

But we’ve long thought about how we could do a MUFES for our noncommercial readers. After all, few operators care more about the topics we typically cover in MUFES programs: energy efficiency, water savings, sustainability practices, waste management, LEED building standards, food- safety practices, facilities management and the like.

So, after a lot of thought and discussion with spec-oriented manufacturers, consultants and operators, we‘ve come up with a plan for a MUFES for Noncommercial Operators. We carefully studied the meeting and show calendar to avoid conflicts and set the meeting for June 13-15, 2011. We’ve booked the Barton Creek Resort in Austin, Texas, where we’ve held the past three MUFES meetings, where the meeting and break rooms work perfectly, and the foodservice is spectacular. And we’ve devised a means of helping noncommercial operators get to the meetings and find operators who will most benefit from our “scholarships.”

We’re going to stage a contest. Tell us in 250 words why you should be at MUFES/NCO. Go to our website and check out the programs for past MUFES meetings. Also, you’ll find a form to help you with your contest entry. We’ll award 30 scholarships to noncommercial operators across all the noncommercial segments. These will include airfare, hotel and seminar fee, basically a free ride to the meeting.

We’re very excited about the new meeting and look forward to reviewing your entries and seeing you in Austin next year.


Cheers,
Robin Ashton
Robin Ashton
Publisher

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