What Time Is It? IBIE Time!
It literally seems like just a few months ago, and not years ago, when the curtain closed on another successful IBIE. Let me assure you, however, that the team responsible for putting on IBIE has not been resting on its laurels. Far from it in fact.
The joint ABA-BEMA Committee and their respective staffs, in addition to our RBA partners and our strong external partners Smith-Bucklin, mdg, Freeman and others, began planning for IBIE 2016 just a couple of months after IBIE 2013 wrapped up. Under the capable and dedicated leadership of Committee Chairman Michael Cornelis, American Pan, and Vice Chairman Joe Turano, Turano Baking Company, every group has been pressed to step up its game. That includes ABA.
In addition to managing the operations, financing and organization of IBIE, ABA is bringing tremendous additional value to IBIE. Specifically, ABA is leading a number of key innovations for IBIE 2016 including enhancing its own education offerings such as:
- Todd Hale’s Mid-Year Consumer Update. This will open up Todd’s incredible consumer marketplace insights shared annually at the ABA Convention to a much wider audience;
- Closing the Workforce Gap. This session will present specific strategies, case studies and best practices for bakers to retain and attract new talent to the industry;
- Developing Future Leaders. A complementary session to the Workforce Gap session, it will focus on the leadership and management skills required to be successful leaders for the baking industry. Led by two of the brightest young leaders in the industry today, it promises to be highly informative and engaging;
- Policy Priorities for Bakers. With the cost of government growing every year, this interactive dialogue with the ABA policy team will educate bakers on the enormous impact food labeling, food safety, human resources, logistics and environmental issues have on their businesses; and
- Energy Efficiency. Several years ago, ABA launched the EnergyStar Challenge to reduce the industry’s energy footprint by 10%. Four bakers have completed the challenge and over 100 more are working toward completion. This session will provide practical, cost-effective how-to tips to save bakers considerable energy costs.
ABA’s contribution, however, isn’t limited to its educational offerings. ABA is very pleased that it has secured an additional strategic partnership with the Global Cold Chain Alliance (GCCA) creating an innovative cold storage pavilion at IBIE. This will allow bakers to explore the potential benefits of cold and frozen storage and GCCA members to network and discuss cold storage solutions with bakers.
ABA also is aggressively promoting a revamped Corporate Meeting Program for ABA members to conduct strategic planning; sales and marketing; or management meetings steps away from the IBIE floor. These meetings will draw a deeper level of participation from member companies as well as allow for interaction with suppliers and even customers. The response has been strong and continues to grow.
The most important contribution ABA will add to IBIE is a very highly motivated group of customers on the show floor conducting business with exhibitors. Baker attendance is tracking ahead of IBIE 2013’s record breaking attendance. ABA members, according to our survey data and economic analysis, are projecting to invest over $486 million in capital expenditures in the coming year. It is IBIE time indeed!