Foodservice Equipment Reports

HOTELEX Shanghai 2014 Forum Delivers Day of Insights, Trends

Shanghai was a very busy place for foodservice professionals earlier this month. The show, March 30-April 2, drew 81,596 E&S professionals from more than 130 countries to Hotelex Shanghai at the city’s New International Expo Centre. More than 1,600 exhibitors spread out across the show floor.

“Foodservice in the 21st Century,” the show’s day-long educational Forum, co-organized by Hotelex, Foodservice Equipment Reports and the Foodservice Consultants Society Int’l.-Asia/Pacific Division, drew more than 200 attendees. The audience, made up of English- and Chinese-speaking people, was equipped with headsets enabling them to hear all of the sessions in simultaneous translation.

FER Publisher Robin Ashton, with anecdotal support from Editor-in-Chief Beth Lorenzini, kicked off the event with “How Big U.S. Chains and Institutions Purchase Equipment,” a presentation based on exclusive research on commercial and noncommercial equipment purchasing policies and the factors that influence purchasing decisions.

Richard Young, director of education and sr. engineer for Pacific Gas & Electric’s Food Service Technology Center, showed attendees how preventive maintenance to existing equipment and smarter selection of more energy-efficient replacements can save operators thousands of dollars a year in “Building and Operating the Sustainable Restaurant.”

A combination of a slowing general economy, high food-price inflation and food-safety concerns led to a dramatic slowdown in foodservice growth in China in 2013, according to Angela Liu, director of business development at NPD China, but fundamentals are in place for a rebound in sales and traffic in 2014. Liu presented an overview of the Chinese foodservice market. Consumer confidence and disposable income are on the rise, especially in the key urban centers that account for most foodservice visits

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Kang Jie, exec. director and CEO of Xiao Nan Guo, one of the largest, mid-to-high-end, full-service Chinese restaurant chains in China, presented “The Xiao Nan Guo Management Model of Chain Restaurants,” highlighting the company’s operating methods and the culture behind the chain’s success.

The myriad and efficient ways that “Centralized and Standardized Food Production” supports large-quantity meal service and supplies restaurant chains was the topic of Clara Pi’s afternoon session. Pi, FCSI, is director of FCG, a Hong Kong-based consultancy, a past chair of FCSI Asia-Pacific division and a director on FCSI’s Worldwide Board.

Professional commercial real-estate operator, David Ng, CEO, Zhongqiang International F&B Alliance, talked about “How Foodservice Chain Operations Work Together to Overcome the Industry Recession,” a top-of-mind topic that combined well with “Develop Strategies to Overcome Economic Downturn in HORECA,” the day’s final presentation from Toni Clarke, FCSI, director of RT Hospitality Solutions and FCSI Asia-Pacific division chair.

The Forum planning committee is already working on speakers and topics for the 2015 show.



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