International Restaurant and Foodservice Show in NYC

FingerLakes Farm
Earlier this week, I was in New York City for The 2012 International Restaurant and Foodservice Show. Usually, I go to the International Hotel, Motel + Restaurant Show in November. So, this was the first time I attended this event. The Restaurant Show in the spring is not as big as the Hotel Show in the fall, but it certainly has a strong F&B (food and beverage) focus. Here are some of my observations:

  • There were two groups that have very strong presence in the show. One represents the farms and wineries in Upstate New York, the other comes from Japan. I am glad to see the promotion for Upstate and the comeback of Japan after last year’s natural disaster.    
  • Natural and healthy food continues to get attention from farmers, food manufacturers, and consumers. I tried several healthy food options --- everything taste very good! Many of them are also available in Whole Food and Wegmans for retail sales. I love that.
  • I was impressed with the technology that turns real flowers into eatable food. The real (dry) flowers look great, taste fantastic, and are healthier than cream and sugar. I highly recommend this product to cake shops.
  • Eatable Flowers


  • I talked to a couple of representatives from Livingsocial in the show. I was asked: What are the next big things in technology? Actually, I got that question a lot. Mobile is definitely here to stay. Very soon, artificial intelligence will probably take off. However, it seems to me that there are still many things that businesses could have done with the existing technology and in the “old” Web 2.0 platforms. Sometimes, we need to sit back and think what we can do better with what we have already had. For companies like Livingsocial and Groupon, I would like to see if they can provide better “after-sales” service to their partners. For example, what business solutions can they provide to the companies that are interested in more than just one-time promotion?

What do you think? What are your observations? If you are interested in the pictures taken in the show, please visit my Facebook or Pinterest album. You also are welcome to “Like,” share, or comment on the pictures. Don’t forget to “Like” my Facebook Page too.

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