Log in

Member News & Headlines Blog

  • 14 May 2018 11:32 AM | Deleted user

    CFBN member Kraft Heinz bets on 5 disruptive brands through its inaugural Springboard Incubator Program class: from antioxidant lemonades to avocado-based sauces, egg-white chips, fermented kraut, and South-African biltong & droëwors.

    Read the Business Wire announcement here

  • 14 May 2018 10:28 AM | Deleted user
    Looking for the next big thing in Chicago business, tech and innovation? Follow these 20 young change-makers to find clues. Among their ranks: social problem-solvers, emerging entrepreneurs and money masters. Some generate big revenues. Others challenge the status quo. Not one is older than 29. 

    Read about our member, Dan Klein, Founder of Tiesta Teas,  here

  • 27 Apr 2018 11:19 AM | Deleted user

    Crain's talked to two entrepreneurs and one venture capitalist about the challenges they face and what needs to happen for more women-owned businesses to reach the next level of growth. 

    Read the article here

  • 23 Apr 2018 3:06 PM | Deleted user

    SEA’s weekly round-up of good news in our community, our industry and our world.

    Check out number 5 here.

  • 20 Apr 2018 1:57 PM | Deleted user

    Nothing better illustrates the vibrancy of entrepreneurship than Inc.'s Rising Stars, the inspiring under 30 founders who are blazing paths in fields ranging from diamond-making to tech to beekeeping.  Presenting the 30 Under 30 stars of the future--and for today. 

    This year, they are the only Chicago entrepreneurs on the list and are 1 of 4 Food & Beverage companies that made the list!

    Read about our members here.
  • 18 Apr 2018 9:23 AM | Deleted user

    MADISON, WI – April 17, 2018 – Kinsa Group announced today they have been recognized by Forbes, Inc. as one of 2018’s America’s Best Professional Recruiting Firms.

    Working with market research company Statista, Forbes, Inc. set out to identify the most well respected recruiters in the United States. Forbes, Inc. compiled a top 250 ranking of the best recruiting firms based on recommendations from thousands of recruiters, professionals, and hiring managers. Of the 250 recruiting firms named, Kinsa Group is the only firm that exclusively focuses on food and beverage industry hires.

    On average, Kinsa Group places 75 food and beverage industry professionals and executives annually in C-Suite, Sales/Marketing, Food Production/Operations, Food Safety/Quality, R&D/Product Development, Supply Chain/Procurement, Engineering, Finance and HR roles. Kinsa Group clients are located all across the US, with significant concentrations in Illinois, Wisconsin, California, New York, New Jersey, Texas and Florida.

    “I am excited that Kinsa Group’s relatively small recruiting team was nominated by numerous clients and talented professionals in the food industry niche for our quality of communication and process as well as selection of talent and jobs. It is a great recognition for our hard work and dedication to making Kinsa Group a leader in food and beverage executive search and recruiting,” said Kinsa Group Vice President, Laurie Hyllberg. “We are proud of this accomplishment and our ability to serve the food and beverage marketplace for 33 years as consultants to identify, recruit and match top talent for a variety of critical food industry positions.”

    About Kinsa Group

    Kinsa Group is an executive search firm based in Milwaukee, WI that specializes in the placement of management, director, vice president and C-suite level positions within the food and beverage industry. Kinsa Group’s parent company, ABR Employment Services, helps connect people to jobs and provides workforce solutions to companies in Wisconsin. ABR is an eight-time recipient of Inavero’s Best of Staffing® Awards.


  • 17 Apr 2018 12:10 PM | Deleted user

    The Chicagoland Food & Beverage Network is partnering with the SmartFood Expo & Conference in an exciting opportunity for your company and our industry to raise our profile and reach key wholesalers, retailers and foodservice executives.

    The inaugural SmartFood Expo & Conference will take place June 25-27, 2018 at Chicago’s McCormick Place and is powered by United Fresh Produce Association, EnsembleIQ and Progressive Grocer. This NEW food and beverage event will offer the following:

    • SmartFood conference sessions driven by retail, food industry and market experts

    • In depth Learning Center right on the show floor for further education and networking

    • 10,000+ attendees from multiple wholesale, retail and foodservice channels, as well as food industry leaders, venture capital firms and other investors

    • 100's of complementary exhibitors and sponsors from the fresh, healthy and better-for-you food sector

    • National food media and bloggers looking for the next big thing in food

    The Chicagoland Food & Beverage Network will host “The Chicagoland Food & Beverage Start-Up Zone” on the SmartFood Expo floor to promote food and beverage start-up companies in the city of Chicago. SmartFood Expo is making booth space available to CFBN member companies at a rate of $995 that includes a branded kiosk, allowing attendees to sample products and drive success.

    The SmartFood Expo is held alongside four existing trade shows, which attracted 7,500 attendees and more than 700 exhibiting companies last year. United Fresh hosts United FreshMKT featuring hundreds of fruit and vegetable marketers, reaching retail and foodservice fresh foods buyers. In addition, co-located events focus on technology innovations in fresh foods (United FreshTEC), cold chain management (Global Cold Chain Expo) and the global floral business (International Floriculture Expo).

    The new SmartFood Expo offers local start-ups and next-stage firms with a high-profile opportunity in a well-established trade show that already attracts many of the supermarket and restaurant buyers that you want to reach.

    For further information, please contact Nina Sader at 202-303-3401

  • 17 Apr 2018 10:28 AM | Deleted user

    Food Business News by Donna Berry

    CHICAGO — “If companies stop competing for a second and start collaborating, there’s a lot we can do,” said Derk Hendriksen, vice-president and general manager of the Ekocenter project for the Coca-Cola Co., Atlanta, at Tyson Foods’ Chicago office last week. Tyson hosted the monthly breakfast meeting of the Chicagoland Food and Beverage Network, which is celebrating its one-year anniversary.

    Read the entire article here

  • 16 Apr 2018 11:13 AM | Deleted user

    Chicagoland Food & Beverage Network, approaching its one-year anniversary, is well on its way to creating a space (a value network, if you will) where innovative startups and established giants can connect, talk, and collaborate.

    Our Innovation Breakfast on April 12 proved that mission -- packed out with more than 200 members and event sponsors. One guest speaker summed it up perfectly with an African proverb, “If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.” 

    For more than 60 minutes, industry giants, Coca-Cola and Tyson, spoke of their strategies and sustainability initiatives, specifically how they pursue growth while still caring for the well-being of the community.

    Justin Whitmore, Corporate Strategy and Chief Sustainability Officer at Tyson, shared his company’s recent endeavors: investing in alternative food companies, including one that utilizes unused food; reducing greenhouse gases by 30% and establishing an initiative to preserve soils used in production. “When you bring together food companies, the communities we serve, and the environment, something special can happen,” added Whitmore. “That’s how we feel about being part of the Chicagoland Food & Beverage Network.”

    Coca-Cola’s Business Integration executive and EkoCenter GM, Derk Hendriksen added, “When you stop competing [with each other] for a second and start collaborating – there’s a lot you can do!” Hendriksen grew up in a socially conscious family and is influenced by it today, professionally and personally. “We can’t just create value for ourselves. We need to think: What is our role in society? Our [business] strategies have consequences,” says Hendriksen.

    Today Hendriksen is helping Coca Cola navigate sustainability opportunities, primarily in distressed parts of the world. His work focuses on three major priorities: strategic acquisitions; becoming water neutral (whatever is taken from a community, they want to give back); and empowering five million global women to start a business.

    These are no small priorities…the last two were developed with the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals in mind and with the knowledge they would need to work closely with NGOs, governments, and communities to make a global impact. Through the Coca-Cola EkoCenter there are 150 solar powered EkoCenter Kiosks run by women, used to sell products and services. Together, they are accelerating development of underserved communities around the world..

    Want to hear more from industry leaders? We encourage you to take advantage of the Network’s Innovation Breakfast events -- next one is May 10. Visit our events page for a full listing of offerings.     

  • 16 Apr 2018 10:33 AM | Deleted user

    16-Apr-2018 Food Navigator By Mary Ellen Shoup

    A year since launching the Chicagoland Food & Beverage Network, executive director Alan Reed has said the message of connecting the Chicago food community, an area with more than 4,500 companies, has spread like wildfire with major industry players joining the cause.

    Read the article and watch the video here

Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software