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WRA Media Contact:

Tracy Kosbau
Vice President of Marketing and Public Relations

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March 2, 2017

Midwest Foodservice Expo
March 13-15 in Milwaukee

The Midwest Foodservice Expo will take place March 13-15, 2017 at the Wisconsin Center in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. The Midwest Foodservice Expo is the largest and most inclusive state show in the Midwest, bringing together all segments of the restaurant, foodservice and hospitality industry.

Foodservice professionals come to the Expo for new trends and product releases, tips for increasing productivity and profits and solutions to the challenges of today’s marketplace.

NOTE: Anyone working in the foodservice industry can attend the Midwest Foodservice Expo. The Expo is NOT open to the public. Registration is $30 online before March 12th at 9:00 pm or $45 on site March 13, 14 and 15.

2017 Expo Highlights

  • Exhibit hall with thousands of innovative products, equipment and services in hundreds of booths showcasing the latest trends in foodservice.
  • Monday’s keynote speaker Jason Young, former senior-level manager with Southwest Airlines, presents a keynote address on Servicetopia – the Ultimate Customer Service Experience. Monday at 10:00 am (doors open at 9:30).
  • Buy Local Conference (Monday, March 13th & Tuesday, March 14th) offers introductory and advanced level training sessions to help foodservice operators better understand how they can bring local sourcing into their business and maneuver the distribution chain. Special tour of Growing Power urban farm led by founder Will Allen on Monday, March 13th from 2:15 - 4:30 pm. Will Allen will also present a seminar entitled “Growing Power and the Good Food Revolution” on Tuesday, March 14th from 9:30 – 10:30 am.
  • Restaurant Marketing Symposium (Monday, March 13th & Tuesday, March 14th) includes a dozen sessions covering a wide range of electronic, social and traditional marketing topics with tips for foodservice operators on how to better engage customers, build a strong brand and just plain get noticed in a noisy marketplace.
  • “Quick Bites” sessions on marketing, technology and workforce engagement.
  • Workforce and leadership training to help foodservice businesses effectively deal with one of the biggest challenges facing the industry today: recruiting and retaining good employees that are the right fit. Attendees can also participate in “quick bite” chat sessions to get tips on building a stronger team.
  • Something Special from Wisconsin pavilion features specialty products from over 30 Wisconsin-based companies.
  • College culinary and management competitions on Monday, March 13th.
  • ProStart Invitational culinary and management competitions for high school students Tuesday, March 14th. Teams from around the state will be competing. The winning teams will compete in the national competition in North Charleston, SC.
  • Networking opportunities for the entire industry including a Lakefront Brewery tour, craft breweries and cocktails tour, Tiki dinner hosted by Kyle Cherek and Afterglow, the unique party experience at The Garden on Milwaukee Street.
  • Art of the Cake competitions with stunning displays of amazing edible artistry.
  • Pastry Arts featuring hands-on demonstrations where attendees can try their hand at pastry creations and learn new bakery techniques.
  • Wisconsin Cheese and Dairy highlighting some of Wisconsin’s best dairy selections with experts on hand from noted Wisconsin cheesemakers.
  • Financial Statements: Tips from a CPA resource center offering business accounting advice for restaurants.
  • Educational programs with practical knowledge on issues affecting the industry right now. Visit www.everythingfoodservice.org for a listing of seminars.
  • Stunning displays in the Tabletop Design Competition where professionally-designed eight-top tablescapes are judged for innovation, functionality, technicality, first impression and cohesiveness – attendees vote and determine the winner of the People’s Choice Award and Social Choice.
  • Young professionals offerings geared specifically for restaurant and hospitality industry professionals 35 and younger.
  • Charitable auction with daily silent auctions to raise money for the non-profit Wisconsin Restaurant Association Education Foundation and support programs for students pursuing careers in the restaurant industry.

For more information visit: www.everythingfoodservice.org. The Midwest Foodservice Expo is produced by the Wisconsin Restaurant Association.

Exhibit Floor Hours
Monday, March 13: 11:00 am – 5:00 pm
Tuesday, March 14: 10:00 am – 4:00 pm
Wednesday, March 15: 10:00 am – 3:00 pm

Media covering the Expo are not required to pre-register to attend. Just check in at the 3rd Floor Registration Area of the Wisconsin Center at the top of the escalators for a free media pass.

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Since 1933, the Wisconsin Restaurant Association has been dedicated
to the promotion, protection and improvement of the foodservice industry.

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Wisconsin Restaurant Association • 2801 Fish Hatchery Rd. • Madison, WI 53713 • Tel: 608.270.9950 • Toll Free: 800.589.3211 • FAX: 608.270.9960