Qualified Illinois small businesses are invited to join the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, Office of Trade & Investment to exhibit in the Illinois Pavilion at the SIAL Canada 2020 trade show in Montreal, Canada from April 15 – 17, 2020.
SIAL Canada is Canada’s largest trade show for the retail and foodservice trade. In 2018, the show had over 1,000 exhibitors from 50 different countries, and there were more than 18,000 visitors from more than 60 countries.
Canada is the ideal market to target U.S. food exports with its close proximity, common language and similar culture. Covering every aspect of the Canadian food & beverage industry, SIAL Canada provides the perfect platform for Illinois exporters servicing institutional food services, restaurants, or grocery.
On-the-Job Training (OJT) is a “hire-first” program. Employer agrees to hire, train, and retain the individual upon successful completion of the training program.
OJT provides employers with a way to have new employees gain specific skills and employment competencies through supervised experience. Workers learn the processes, work tasks, tools and methods of a specific job or group of jobs in an actual work setting.
This is an exciting time in the food & beverage industry, and we are seeing entrepreneurs launch new companies with new ideas that will change the industry for years to come. It is especially exciting to see so many start-ups come out of the greater Chicago area. We have an eco-system here that rivals anywhere else in the world with great incubators and accelerators in town that are creating change and helping give birth to these incredible start-ups.
As CFBN looked at our eco-system, we saw a gap in terms of funding early stage companies after they leave incubators and accelerators. We saw significant challenges with access to capital for many entrepreneurs, especially woman and minority business owners. As a part of our mission to help support a growing and innovative food & beverage industry, and to build a more inclusive eco-system, CFBN is extremely proud to be partnering with Dobson Avenue Partners and CA Fortune to launch the GrowChicago Fund.
The Grow Chicago Fund is an impact investment seed fund dedicated to driving return for investors through capital, consciousness, and community by focusing on Minority Business Enterprise (MBE), Women’s Business Enterprise (WBE), sustainable processes, and underserved communities throughout Chicagoland. In short, the goal is to help accelerate the growth of up-and-coming companies and reshape the future of food and beverage.
The Grow Chicago Fund will focus on finding, investing in, and mentoring woman and minority-owned food & beverage businesses, post-incubator, to provide economic opportunity to diverse entrepreneurs and teams. The fund will invest at the Seed and Series A stages in companies with at least $100K in revenue. CFBN is pleased to be a partner in this important effort, and looks forward to connecting our robust eco-system with these inspiring and breakthrough businesses. For more information about investing in the fund, or about how the GrowChicago Fund could invest in your business, please contact email@example.com
The Intel Distillery Annual Report Preview
International trade, climate change, meatless diets, human health and food safety are among the topics that top The Intel Distillery’s annual summary of food production.Trade deals with China, Mexico and Canada, severe weather impacting planting and harvest on farms, a major influx of plant-based meat substitute offerings, corporate social responsibility commitments by food manufacturers, influential health studies, and increased attention to federal food safety regulations all helped to define 2019.
The “Top Ten Topics” report, due to hit inboxes on January 28, ranks and analyzes the conversations by and about the top 1,500 most influential voices throughout food, beverage and agriculture. The aim to offer a wide perspective of the issues that matter which impact decisions at all levels of U.S. food production.
The Chicagoland Food & Beverage Network offered almost 40 events in the 2019 calendar, in addition to numerous offerings for discounts and admission to events offered by our industry partners and members! In 2020, we have focused our offerings to approximately 30 events designed to address "of the minute" topics that are important to our industry. Make sure to mark your calendar starting January 16th, 2020 so you can be a part of the conversation. Access the events here.
Divestiture activity has increased across industries, with many companies increasing their focus on repositioning their portfolios. Much of the divestiture activity in consumer and retail is coming from food & beverage companies. Facing significant headwinds, including emerging brands that are gaining shelf space, legacy consumer packaged goods companies (CPGs) realize that they need to streamline and focus on their core competencies, hence the rise in divestiture activity in the food and beverage industry over the last four years. Millennials, who will soon overtake baby boomers as the generation with the most discretionary spending power in the United States, are less brand-loyal and more focused on value than older generations. Click here to access the report.
Learn more about the U.S.-U.A.E. Business Council’s Food Security Mission to the U.A.E. This U.S. Department of Commerce-certified trade mission will take place from 16-20 February 2020 and will coincide with the 25th edition of Gulfood in Dubai, the world’s largest annual food and beverage trade exhibition.
During this mission, participating companies will have the opportunity to learn more about the U.A.E.’s bold new initiatives in food security and production as well as potential partnership opportunities.
Our weeklong mission will include high-level meetings in Dubai, Sharjah, and Abu Dhabi with U.A.E. Ministers of Food Security, Advanced Sciences, and Artificial Intelligence; U.S. Embassy & Consulate officials; as well as key executives from leading Emirati private and public sector companies such as Mubadala, a $250 billion U.A.E. sovereign wealth fund. It will also include visits to the Gulfood conference, Emirati farms, food safety centers, and universities.
Last week some of you braved the early morning snow to join CFBN and our distinguished panel of speakers for our Data Disruption breakfast - a look at how new technologies, data, and analytic tools are shaping and changing the value chain for food and beverage companies.
For food and beverage companies - whether still growing or an established CPG - the topic has multiple impacts and the panel stressed the importance and challenge of integrating data (in real time, no less) into your daily business operations. Data intelligence - how our industry gets up to speed and integrates technologies and tools (like AI, BI tools, blockchain, transparency tools, and manufacturing tools) - was a crucial common theme throughout the conversation. With all speakers final insights touching on integrating data learnings into the work of all your team members as they attempt to gain speed and a leg up on the competition.
Final thoughts shared included: the importance of transparency both for the consumer and the process holder (Martin Lutz, ProleiT); the need to understand new data privacy laws and protections that consumers are demanding and states are regulating (Colin Kerr, Bank of America); the importance of food brands using all the technologies at their disposal to attract, connect with, and communicate their ideals to the consumer (Shruthi Chandramouli, Enjoy Life Foods); and, the coming cross pollination of technologies and industries in the marketplace and how this will help us all to advance, as well as the needed low end disruption predicted for BI and business visualization tools (Stephen Mancini, Cohn Reznick).
Thank you again to our panel of insiders for sharing their early morning thoughts - looking forward to seeing what 2020 holds for data and technology advances for our industry!
"Everyone in the food industry is aware of some of the big multiples paid for early stage branded food companies over the last few years. Exit valuations as high as 6- or 7-time sales have been seen. This has caused a large number of entrepreneurs and funders to create companies searching for these exit valuations. New Food Strategies has noticed some recent developments that will make these high-priced exits more and more difficult." Read more here.
"Brands are expected to 'go back to basics' by incorporating essential nutrients that support physical and emotional health, while also featuring ingredients like adaptogenic herbs and CBD. The report said functional beverages will be 'next generation,' addressing multiple needs to help consumers achieve emotional and physical health goals." Read more here.
Chicagoland Food & Beverage Network
1 W Monroe Street
Chicago, IL 60603
Tel (312) 525-9653