Foodservice Equipment Reports

SHOW REPORT: California or Bust!

When it comes to sharpening your skills and remaining competitive, nothing is better than seeing what your peers are doing to spark ideas for product improvement. Don't miss a key opportunity to enhance your operations with new ideas: Check out the Western Foodservice & Hospitality Expo to be held Aug. 12-14 at the Anaheim Convention Center in Anaheim, Calif., where thousands of industry leaders will be under one roof. The show is sponsored by the California Restaurant Association.

More than 350 exhibitors, including manufacturers and distributors, will be on hand to discuss equipment specifications and efficiency needs with operators.

This year, the Western Expo will be presented in Orange County as part of an effort to rotate the event’s location throughout Southern California. With many multi-unit corporate headquarters located nearby, and 8,000 buyers expected, attendance is practically a must.

Make Way for More Food Choices

The latest in cooking creativity and the equipment needed to make it happen will be showcased in the Western Expo's first-ever Food Trends Experience.  Created in response to last year's Western Expo guest requests, the 25,000-sq.-ft. area offers far more than mere taste testing.

The new demonstration theatre will highlight how to discover what foods customers want and turn innovative culinary offerings into menu items.  Chefs will create low-sodium, gluten-free foods that often are easy, untapped moneymakers for diners with dietary needs. You'll get guidance on how to develop alternatives to standard fare, which may come in handy with the growing number of state and local laws requiring menu nutrition labeling.

You'll unlock even more ideas as you see other new directions in foods, such as fusion cooking, and unexplored ingredients, such as truffles or unconventional cuts of meat.

Again this year, the Expo Comida Latina Hispanic Food & Beverage Trade Event will be co-located on the show floor, featuring educational sessions on Hispanic marketing trends and U.S. distribution, in addition to cooking demonstrations with new and traditional flavors and products.

Educational Programs

The Ferdinand Metz Foodservice Forum will offer an array of educational sessions, including those zeroing in on containing costs and developing new revenue streams. Sessions and topics that hold particular appeal for equipment and real-estate professionals include:

“Fast Track to Profits Symposium”: This new four-hour offering from David Scott Peters, founder of The Restaurant Expert, will help you focus on controlling food and liquor costs, creating an incredibly profitable menu and correcting poor management. The symposium is scheduled for Aug. 14 from 9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.

“10 Commandments of Leasing Commercial Space”: Dale Willerton, The Lease Coach, will give insight to chain and independent operators, franchisees and franchisors on negotiation strategies, effectively dealing with real-estate agents and ultimately getting the lowest rental rate. The session is scheduled for Aug. 13 from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. A similar session, "101 Leasing Tips for Restaurant Tenants," will be held Aug. 12 from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m.

“Add Profits to Your Restaurant with a Take-Home Catering Division”: In these tough economic times, adding catering to your existing business can create another revenue source. Sandy Korem, also known as The Catering Coach, will show how to decide what type of catering service fits your operation, including pricing, menu and the equipment you will need to support the service. The seminar is scheduled for Aug. 13 from 3 to 3:45 p.m., immediately followed by Korem's seminar "How to Reach Your Catering Potential" from 4 to 4:45 p.m.

For more information about the Forum, contact RoseAnne Homola at

A Welcome Mat for Multi-Unit Operators

Chain operators can step right up and be pampered Western Expo style. The Multi-Unit Operators Alliance will steer guests to programs and exhibits that address their specific concerns. Even operators with as little as two units will receive VIP treatment.

Joining the Alliance entitles you and 10 of your colleagues to admission to the floor and sessions at the Ferdinand Metz Foodservice Forum. Alliance members won't have to wait in long lines because their registration badges will be ready to go at the VIP registration counter.

To join the Alliance, contact VIP Coordinator Lynn O'Hara at 203/840-5354 or

Make the Most of Your Time

Hit the spots that can impact your business the most by using to plan your visit. "My Show Planner," a special feature on the site, lets you preview exhibitors, educational sessions and special events and create a schedule.

Delve further and you can search exhibitors by product category and through the floor plan. Other online highlights are an Attendee FAQ, Ultimate Barista Challenge schedule and Show Specials for valuable giveaways and discounts.

Only have a few hours to check out the show? Let Western Expo concierges book appointments for you to avoid wasting precious time.

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