ACityDiscount Attends The 2015 NAFEM ShowPosted: Mar 10, 2015
2015's Show was held in Anaheim, CA
In February, members of the ACityDiscount team traveled to Anaheim, CA to attend the 2015 NAFEM Show. NAFEM, the North American Association of Food Equipment Manufacturers, is the industry’s largest collective of manufacturers and suppliers, and their biennial showcase is one of the biggest expositions in foodservice. The NAFEM Show gives manufacturers an opportunity to display many of their new and forthcoming products for rep groups, distributors, and the dealer community. The 2015 show was one of the largest on record, and featured booths from over 500 equipment manufacturers.
ACityDiscount Team Members Leave Atlanta and Avoid the Cold
Team members left Atlanta on Wednesday, February 18th and barely missed the kiss of Canadian cold air. As the polar vortex played its game with the eastern seaboard and temperatures in the Atlanta area drew close to the single digits, the crew was greeted by gorgeous Orange County, CA weather. But the 70 degree plus sunny days were just a fringe benefit, as there was work to be done indoors. The team finalized their itinerary for the show after arriving on Wednesday evening, and prepared themselves (and their feet) for several days at NAFEM.
ACityDiscount’s First Day at the NAFEM Show
After gathering their show badges in the hotel lobby on Thursday morning, the team strolled to the hotel-adjacent Anaheim Convention Center. A multi-level, glass covered complex, the NAFEM show saw all of the convention center’s 5 main exhibit halls opened for exhibitor booths that ranged in size from 10’ x 10’ to mini-complexes that stretched several hundred feet across. Before the doors opened at 9 am, a crowd amassed that was akin to the starting line of a large city marathon. Security thoroughly checked all badges to prevent non-exhibitors from entering early, and a small section of carpet acted as their impasse. But as the clocks struck 9 o’ clock, patrons entered the show floor in one fell swoop.
As the team entered the show, they broke off into their pre-ordained teams and began to traverse the vast expanse of foodservice equipment. Stops for the team on Day 1 included an early morning visit to Nemco, as well as trips to Arctic Air refrigeration, Southbend, Crown Verity, Moffat, Star, and a visit at Vollrath to close the day. The crew feasted on concession items for lunch, and managed to find various other treats on the show floor to keep them satiated until the 4:00 pm hors d’oeuvre and happy hour.
ACityDiscount’s Second Day at the NAFEM Show
Upon arriving to the show on Day 2, the crew was able to enter early thanks to a special green dot on their badges. The team’s first stop was a tour of the new Beverage Air offerings, before moving onto the Ice-O-Matic booth. Learning the show’s floor plan in advance proved fruitful, as the team was able to cover significant ground on Day 2. The crew was able to take in nearly the entire show, and covered well over half on the second day.
Some of the second day highlights were stops at the Turbo Air, Manitowoc, and Vulcan areas, an exploration of many of ACityDiscount’s smallwares manufacturers, and some Organic Deep-Fried Fattback Blues during a food truck lunch provided by Bakersfield, CA blues artist Brother Yusef. Brother Yusef’s performance during lunch was a perfect accompaniment to the California sunshine and delicious offerings from local food trucks.
Major Takeaways from the 2015 NAFEM Show
For the ACityDiscount team, there were several major takeaways from this year’s NAFEM Show. The foodservice industry is beginning to shift to meet the desires / expectations of younger generations, and as a result, manufacturers are beginning to take on the new challenges faced by modern eateries. Some of the most common themes at this year’s show were:
More Coverage From ACityDiscount’s Trip to the NAFEM Show
The team got lots of great videos on innovative foodservice equipment at NAFEM, and plenty of candid shots of the show. To see more footage from the team’s trip to Anaheim, stop by the ACityDiscount Facebook Page, YouTube Channel, or Google + Page.