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Revamped AB7 expo to host exciting food-bev conference

AB7 logo LA professiosnal three-day symposium, Food Forum 2017, offers delegates the opportunity to learn and gain CPD credits as Africa’s Big 7 expo goes international in Jo’burg this June.

Running from 25-27 June as part of Africa’s premier food and beverage trade show, it boasts a strong line up of key speakers,

It will focus on key issues across the food sector – from new developments and trends in the restaurant and hospitality sector on day one, through to the manufacturing and processing industry on day two and on the final day, the focus falls on farming and agribusiness.

“This is a major conference for the food industry at the centre of one of the continent’s most well-established food and beverage shows,” says David Ross, dmg events’ content head.

“Each day is themed and targeted at specific areas of the industry focused on the key issues but mindful of the special requirements of the sub-Saharan sector.”

CPD points

Delegates to the Forum will also earn Continuing Professional Development (CPD) points. CPD operates around the world and dmg events, which bought Africa’s Big 7 (AB7) last year, introduced it to South Africa in 2017. CPD benefits the employee, the employer and ensures dmg conferences are of recognised international standard.
The Food Forum first day is focused on ‘market perspectives and growth strategies’, where delegates include executive chefs, heads of F&B as well as individuals responsible for sourcing and buying.

The day starts with Wendy Albert, the CEO of the Restaurant Association of SA, with an overview of SA food retail and restaurants, looking at key drivers and trends for the future.

The second day is about packaging and production with attendees including plant owners and managers alongside engineers and machinery experts from the food sector.

As well as new innovations, there will be sessions on enhancing productivity, improving supply chains and understanding the changing expectation of consumers.

Among the speakers are Paul Raphaely, Co-Founder of Nomu Brands, revealing exclusive consumer research and how it acts as a guide to the future.

Mark Sack, the MD of Sally Williams Fine Foods, is a key panelist at The Food Forum. In the past 18 months, he’s overseen the launch of a new ice cream manufacturing plant as well as a foray into retail in the upmarket district of Sandton, Johannesburg.

Special features at AB7 2017 includes Café Culture featuring competitions and barista expertise with a healthy blend of mixology and The Ultimate Hotel Chef Challenge 2017, which will bring together sub-Saharan Africa’s finest in a showdown worthy of Africa’s premier food show.

Revamping and rebranding the show

AB7, now in its 16th year, was acquired last year by dmg events Middle East, Asia & Africa and its Africa VP, Christine Davidson, explains the decision to rebrand and refocus such a long standing industry show.

“The Food Forum is a centerpiece of the new AB7 brand,” she says. “The F&B industry has changed at such a pace and Africa’s Big 7 now reflects that, with a new focus on specialist ingredients, flavours, food trends and the latest production and technology driven processes.

“This year’s show will meet all buyers’ needs, offering essential information, live demonstrations and discussion… with a bit of inspiration too. Whether visitors are chefs, restaurant or café owners or managers – all will find everything they need at AB7 whether on the show floor, in the conference or at live demonstrations, training, networking or presentations”

The rebranded AB7, and The Food Forum, is co-located with SAITEX 2017 – Africa’s largest product sourcing event – and The Hotel Show Africa 2017, one of the world’s most successful hospitality event brands, at The Gallagher Convention Centre, Johannesburg, from June 25 to 27.

See the full Food Forum conference programme at www.africabig7.com and also register for show and conference passes.