Connect: BC's New Food, Drink, and Lodging Exposition launches next October

VANCOUVER, Jan. 28, 2013 /CNW/ - The Canadian Restaurant and Foodservices Association (CRFA), the British Columbia Hotel Association (BCHA), and the Alliance of Beverage Licensees (ABLE) are pleased to announce they are joining together to offer an exciting new trade exposition for the hospitality industry in October 2013.

Connect, BC's first food, drink and lodging expo, will take place Oct. 27 - 28 at the Vancouver Convention Centre West.

The hospitality industry generates approximately $14 billion annually for the provincial economy and is one of the largest employers with more than 200,000 direct jobs.

Connect will bring together thousands of restaurant, bar, nightclub, hotel and motel operators from across BC to see the latest products and services from hundreds of industry suppliers.  The show will also host educational seminars, workshops and networking events for delegates to learn about new strategies for growth.

"This is a very exciting opportunity to bring BC's food, lodging and drink purveyors together for what will be the largest hospitality tradeshow in the history of the province," said Ron Orr, Chair of the Alliance of Beverage Licensees.

"We look forward to building on the past successes of the Hospitality Industry Expo and the BC Foodservice Expo. We believe we have brought together a great collaborative team to present a new event that will showcase the finest of BC's lodging and foodservice industries," said David Wetsch, President of the BC Hotel Association.

"Not only is the hospitality industry at the heart of every community, it's a major economic engine. I'm thrilled that our associations have joined forces to gather the entire industry under one roof to learn, grow and celebrate together," said Donna Dooher, Chair of the Canadian Restaurant and Foodservices Association.

About the host associations:

Canadian Restaurant and Foodservices Association

Since its founding in 1944, the Canadian Restaurant and Foodservices Association has grown to more than 30,000 members across the country.  Through advocacy, research, member savings and industry events, we help our members in every Canadian community grow and prosper.   CRFA members represent every sector of Canada's vibrant and innovative restaurant industry, including restaurants, bars, cafeterias, coffee shops, and contract and social caterers.

British Columbia Hotel Association

The British Columbia Hotel Association is the advocate and spokesperson for the interests of the Hotel Industry throughout British Columbia.  The BCHA has approximately 600 hotel members and 200 associate members, representing an industry with revenue in excess of $3.2 billion, 78,000 rooms and more than 58,000 employees. We are a significant component of BC's $13.8 billion tourism trade and have members in almost every community throughout BC.

Alliance of Beverage Licensees

The Alliance of Beverage Licensees is the industry advocate for issues affecting Liquor Primary and Licensee Retail Stores throughout British Columbia.  ABLE strives to provide its members with the resources and tools required to operate and grow a successful business.  ABLE works with its members to proudly promote a responsible beverage industry for BC.

SOURCE: Canadian Restaurant and Foodservices Association

For further information:

Mark von Schellwitz
Vice President, Western Canada
Canadian Restaurant & Foodservices Association
mark@crfa.ca
Tel: 604-809-5719

Cailey Murphy
Director of Communications
British Columbia Hotel Association 
cailey@bchotelassociation.com 
Tel: 604-443-4751

Ian Baillie
Executive Director 
Alliance of Beverage Licensees
ian@ablebc.ca
Tel: 604-688-5560