Are your friends and family constantly saying you should sell your homemade cheesecake, meat rub, or cucumber coconut lemonade?
Or maybe you have a food blog or you have lots of followers to your Trip Advisor restaurant reviews or your food photos on Instagram?
If so, run don’t walk to the fast-approaching Summer Specialty Food Show.
Billed as North America’s largest specialty food and beverage event, you’ll find 180,000 products including confections, cheese, coffee, snacks, spices, ethnic foods, natural, organic and more.
Plus its your chance to connect with 2,400 exhibitors from 50 countries and regions.
Who knows… one may turn out to be your future customer or partner!
And if you’re just starting out, the Summer Specialty Food Show is your chance to attend three days of education programs for both explorers and beginners as well as seasoned entrepreneurs alike.
- funding your business
- hot trends in the food industry
- basics of the specialty food business
- and many more…
You’ll learn from experts like Jon Taffer, host of the popular TV show “Bar Rescue.”
And Josh Treuhaft, founder and creative director of Salvage Supperclub.
Among other things, Josh started a communal dining experience where guests eat a gourmet dinner in a giant dumpster as a way to “highlight the untapped potential in often-overlooked foods and solve the world-wide problem of food waste.”
And this year you can get a front row seat as a celebrity Greek chef, a specialty produce supplier, and others pitch their business to industry experts.
Think of it as Shark Tank for the specialty food industry!
But instead of funding, they’re pitching for profitable promotional opportunities.
And speaking of funding — the cost to attend is anywhere from $99-$200 depending on your situation.
But Sorry — You Can’t Go
After I got totally pumped about the Summer Fancy Food Show it turns out it’s not open to the general public. What??!!!
The site states that because they are “a trade event designed to promote growth in commerce in the specialty food industry… [the] event is open to qualified buyers and industry professionals (18 years of age or older).”
Reading that I knew a lot of change seekers would be discouraged and give up.
And like I always say, information will set you free.
So I picked up the phone and called the organizers for more information.
I was right.
Turns out all you need to establish that you are a “qualified professional” is a business card (how hard can that be?!)…
Or a certificate from a culinary or wine school.
Or a pay stub that says you work in some food related job like a restaurant or a local cheese shop or on a local farm.
Or a link to your food/beverage related blog or Instagram account.
Or other evidence that you are even exploring the world of food and beverages.
If you’re not sure, post your situation on the in the comments below, and I’m happy to try to help you find a way.
The bottom line — GO FOR IT!
Can’t make it to the Summer Fancy Food Show in NYC for the June 24-27th event?
They’ve already posted dates and locations for the next three years!
That gives you plenty of time to become a “qualified professional!”
So start saving your pennies and find a way to make it happen.
And remember — when you work for yourself, anything is possible!