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RCA Show: On- and Off-Site Events

Following the Expo, there were a number of events designed to engage customers directly with ingredient company executives. On-site was the RCA hospitality suite, which was sponsored by Carla’s Pasta, Gum Technology, Franklin Foods and Cryovac. While some of the sponsors used the space to showcase new food or beverage products, the always-crowded suite didn’t really provide the chance for any meaningful customer dialogue.

Off-site events seemed to be the most successful at engaging customers. The most-talked-about was the private, invitation-only event at trendy Eddie’s House restaurant in Scottsdale. Billed as “Grazing Arizona,” the event was sponsored by ConAgra Mills® and Gilroy Foods & Flavors™. There, Chef Eddie and his team presented an array of innovative small plates and desserts, each of which featured applications using ConAgra Mills flours and Gilroy’s vegetables and flavors. Guests were provided with a detailed menu listing the ingredients featured in each. They could also order samples of each featured product to be sent to them. (An e-mail follow-up with this information was sent after the show, as well.) In the casual, intimate atmosphere, company execs and customers were engaged in great conversations about both the food and the festive evening.

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