Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Thinking Outside the Box of Chocolates

I spent a few short but interesting hours today walking the show floor at Foodsmarts, the annual meeting and expo of the Institute of Food Technologists. You’re asking yourself, “A food show, Karen?” But it was in my own front yard, on Chicago’s lakefront, and it had a compelling theme – Health, Wellness and Foods. Just substitute the word beauty for foods in the title and it echoes the theme of so many recent beauty industry events. General sessions sounded a lot like beauty events, too, including risk assessment, regulatory challenges, trends and sustainability. Of course, I am not the first to understand that we can learn new things by occasionally stepping outside the lines that define our jobs and areas of expertise!

At the show, I chatted with Michael Overstreet, a GCI Magazine contributor, and met Mike Efting, president of Viachem, whose business model was outlined in the magazine's first Supply Chain feature some months ago. Jarchem Industries and Cognis were just two of the beauty industry suppliers who sent their food business teams to the event.

And as if I needed another reason to enjoy the IFT show -- there's all kinds of food there -- including chocolate, which has been shown to be good for you.


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