Specialty Food Magazine

Summer 2020

Specialty Food Magazine is the leading publication for retailers, manufacturers and foodservice professionals in the specialty food trade. It provides news, trends and business-building insights that help readers keep their businesses competitive.

Issue link: https://www.e-digitaleditions.com/i/1256204

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Page 33 of 91

MESSAGE FROM PHIL KAFARAKIS, OUTGOING PRESIDENT Phil Kafarakis Outgoing President, Specialty Food Association I t is mid-May as I write this from my apartment in Manhattan amid the COVID-19 pandemic. For most of us, how we work has dramatically changed as we leverage all the tools at our disposal to stay connected with our teams, our customers, and contacts across the industry. The world has evolved in such a short period of time! My career is evolving too as I plan to leave the SFA at the end of June to start my own "next chapter." Serving as president of this dynamic organization for the past four years has been an extraordinary privilege. The organizational transformation I've had the honor to lead has built a stronger and more resilient Association to serve this remarkable industry. I have the utmost confidence in the SFA's future and in yours! I must share how proud I am of the Specialty Food Association team members and their enthusiastic can-do response to all our organizational transitions. Even (maybe especially) given current conditions, they continue to support our membership full throttle. When the Summer Fancy Food Show was canceled—due to an extraordinary set of circumstances beyond our capacity to control— my colleagues leapt into action. The SFA team processed over half of registered exhibitors' refunds in the first four days after announcing the show's cancellation. They responded to disruption with service. It was humbling to be a part of that tactical effort. As we face a year without the Summer Fancy Food Show, the first show cancellation in 66 years, I know that the industry will need the SFA more than ever. And it will continue working to provide critical information from experts in the field to help you through this period of shutdown, slowdown, and recovery. You'll find webinars (live and archived) and other tools to use in the online Learning Center. For makers and buyers, you'll see enhancements to the Product Marketplace on specialtyfood.com to keep commerce flowing. And the SFA will continue to brainstorm with members from across the country and from all segments of the industry to create additional services to help keep your businesses strong. We know you have a need for preparedness and staying current on the latest research and recommendations coming from experts. For the past several months, we've been building toward a new engagement and communication platform for keeping you better and continually informed. Soon you will be able to download a new app to read about the news, trends, and in-depth content you enjoy in our other media platforms. As part of this move to digital, we are transitioning our printed Specialty Food magazine to a digital- only version. I can't tell you how honored and grateful I am to have been a part of the SFA journey these last four years. I know that you will all continue together to Shape the Future of Food—it's your legacy and your destiny. Thank you for your great support—onward! SUMMER

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