TORONTO, March 9, 2012 /CNW/ - In addition to attracting thousands of industry professionals to network and see new products, services and trends, the CRFA Show awarded exhibitor excellence and crowned a new culinary champion. Held March 4-6 in Toronto, the CRFA Show is the biggest event of the year for Canada's $63-billion restaurant industry:
- 12,000 visitors
- More than 1,200 exhibit booths
- 5 exhibitor awards
- 1 winner among 16 chefs in the Discovered Culinary Competition
- 5 high-level industry executive panelists and Keynote Speaker Ron MacLean at the Breakfast with Champions
- 32 educational seminars
- 6 chef demos
- 12 VIP government visitors
- 1 Stanley Cup
- Industry Night Out featuring debut of "I am a Restaurant" film
Awarding exhibitor excellence
The CRFA Show awarded Bunn-O-Matic Corporation of Canada with the loyalty award, recognizing its 50 years at the show.
Four exhibitors won best booth awards: Gala Bakery for best small booth, Rational for best traffic-building booth, Embassy of Mexico Agricultural office for best large booth and Delicious World Corp for best first-year exhibitor.
"The entire restaurant and hospitality community came together to make this the most exciting CRFA Show ever," says CRFA President and CEO Garth Whyte. "There were more opportunities than ever to do business, network and learn about the latest trends and innovation in Canada's dynamic restaurant industry."
Culinary champion crowned
Chef Brianne Nash won the Discovered Culinary Competition, beating out 15 finalists chosen over four months of preliminary competitions that involved more than 50 competitors and 23 judges. Chef Nash will take time off work at Saucy restaurant in Mississauga to enjoy her grand prize - a trip to Spain to train in the kitchen of Casa Gerardo, a Michelin-star restaurant.
Government VIPs tour the show
The Canadian Restaurant and Foodservices Association was pleased to welcome several special visitors to the show:
- Mexican Ambassador Francisco J. Barrio-Terrazas
- Mexican Agriculture Minister Counsellor Ernesto Maldonado
- Illinois Governor Pat Quinn
- Federal Minister of State for Small Business and Tourism Maxime Bernier
- Provincial Minister of Training, Colleges and Universities Glen Murray
- MP Michelle Rempel
- MP Blake Richards
- Toronto City Councillor Doug Ford
- Senator Frank Mahovlich
- New Zealand High Commissioner Andrew Needs
- New Zealand Trade Commissioner Melissa Trochon
- U.S. Consul General Kevin Johnson
Giving back to the community
The Stanley Cup toured the show on March 5, giving fans a photo opportunity in exchange for donations to Friends of We Care, which assists Canadian children with physical disabilities.
Second Harvest collected 22,622 pounds of food from CRFA Show exhibitors, including fresh fruit and vegetables, canned goods and sauces, fruit juice, crackers and snack foods, breads, fresh salad and dips, meat and cheese.
The 2013 CRFA Show will return to Toronto's Direct Energy Centre on March 3-5, 2013.
The CRFA Show is owned and operated by the Canadian Restaurant and Foodservices Association, one of the country's leading business associations with more than 30,000 members. Proceeds from the shows are directed to CRFA's advocacy, research and member services in support of a growing and prosperous Canadian restaurant industry.
For further information:
Note to Editors: Photo gallery will be available today at www.crfashow.ca/2012photogallery.
Contact: Prasanthi Vasanthakumar, Communications Specialist, 1-800-387-5649, ext. 4254 or [email protected].