4 reasons to attend MenuDirections this year

The October conference from FoodService Director and its parent company offers unique opportunities for on-site operators from all segments.
Attendees tune in during a previous MenuDirections conference. | Photo by Scott Mitchell

On-site operators from across the country will come together next month for MenuDirections, the annual event hosted by FoodService Director and its parent company, Winsight.

MenuDirections, taking place Oct. 8-10 at the Ohio State University in Columbus, offers a unique chance for operators from all segments to gather for three days of education and inspiration. Though its culinary focus comes through in its name, MenuDirections is about so much more than the menu.

Here are just some of the reasons operators should attend.

Look behind the scenes at college foodservice.

2023’s event marks the second time MenuDirections will take place on a college campus—and attendees can take advantage of the many opportunities that entails. They’ll hear from members of the Ohio State dining team in a presentation on Monday and get an inside look at the foodservice operation in action during a Tuesday morning tour.

In addition, they’ll hear from Cathann Cress, dean of the university’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences, as she explores the state of farming in the U.S. and what’s impacting its future.

Learn how peers are tackling labor issues.

Foodservice is evolving faster than ever, and operators are confronting fresh challenges at every turn. But perhaps none are more vexing than those concerning labor.

During Sunday’s general session, Chef Alexandra Ceribelli from Rutgers University will share strategies that she’s found promote harmony among foodservice staff and foster a spirit of collaboration. Then, on Tuesday, Restaurant Business Editor-at-Large Peter Romeo will reveal what’s working for operators on the restaurant side of the industry when it comes to hiring and retention.

Get a front seat to innovation in other sectors.

Matt Harding, director of culinary for Piada Italian Street Food, will open the conference with an in-depth look at the growing restaurant brand. He’ll share thoughts on crafting a limited-service concept from scratch, touching on everything from menu to design and marketing.

In addition, attendees will hear how retailers are taking convenience to new levels and how foodservice is capitalizing on changing technology, from AI and smart vending to robot servers.

Uncover menu strategies that spell success.

In her Monday session “Consumer & Menu Trends to Watch,” Lizzy Freier of market research company Technomic will offer a wealth of insights on how operators can drive sales and build buzz among the demographics they’re trying to reach. Attendees will also get a chance to test new products and consider fresh menu applications in culinary workshops during the conference, as well as throughout the MenuDirections vendor fair.

For more information on MenuDirections or to register for the event, click here.



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