Press Release

National Restaurant Association Show Kicks Off Annual Search For Top Food and Beverage Products

Now accepting submissions for the 2024 FABI Awards, which honor exceptional food and beverage breakthroughs in taste, profitability, creativity and market appeal.

Contact: Julie Franks; FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: October 11, 2023

National Restaurant Show
CHICAGO (October 11, 2023)— The National Restaurant Association Restaurant, Hotel-Motel Show®, the epicenter of culinary innovation and a showcase of emerging trends in the foodservice industry, is excited to announce the opening of applications for the prestigious 2024 Food and Beverage (FABI) Awards. This renowned award program recognizes and celebrates forward-thinking and creative products that are shaping the future of food and beverage within restaurants and for consumers. FABI Awardees will be prominently featured at the 2024 National Restaurant Association Show, taking place from May 18-21, 2024, at McCormick Place in Chicago, IL, where attendees can experience these cutting-edge products firsthand.

Tom Cindric, President of Winsight Exhibitions, conveyed his enthusiasm, saying, “The FABI Awards program truly represents the heart of culinary innovation within the food and beverage industry. As we look ahead to 2024, we're thrilled to maintain our legacy of introducing the year's most exceptional food and beverage products. These products, and especially the FABI Favorites, embody the forefront of creativity and innovation, setting new trends, delighting customers, and offering expanded menu possibilities across the industry—an exhilarating journey into the world of culinary excellence.”

In addition to the prestigious FABI Awards, a select group of recipients will also earn the esteemed title of FABI Favorites. These exceptional products are carefully chosen by our expert panel of judges as the most groundbreaking and influential of the year. Introduced at the 2023 Show, this new designation offers special recognition to food and beverage products that excel within an already extraordinary lineup, exemplifying creativity, ingenuity, and the ability to expand menu options industry-wide.

“The FABI Award is incredibly important because it provides credibility in an environment where there's a lot of innovation,” said Scott Desani, President & COO, Meati Foods and a 2023 FABI Favorite recipient. “It helps operators understand which products are really breaking through and standing out.”

All FABI Awardees receive industry-wide exposure before, during, and after the Show, and their awarded products will be prominently acknowledged throughout the Show and are short-listed for additional press coverage opportunities. Additional exposure includes:

  • Recognition in a wire-distributed press release announcement to national and trade media, resulting in significant traditional and social media coverage.
  • Promotion to event attendees through the Show’s website, marketing emails, and social channels.
  • Feature on The Show To Go, the Show’s digital marketplace, connecting operators directly with suppliers to explore each product.
  • Comprehensive coverage via Show public relations efforts, encompassing pre-show pitches, daily Show media alerts, on-site press events, and priority placement in on-site media opportunities with broadcast media.
  • Opportunity to participate in a FABI Tasting session taking place at the Connections space in The Culinary Experience. Tastings are promoted to attendees in the online planner and mobile app.

Each FABI Award submission will be evaluated by an independent panel of judges from across the foodservice industry who represent some of the most well-known brands and organizations. Recipients are selected for their exciting new tastes, uniqueness in the market, appeal to the operator community, creative approach to operator challenges, or introduction of new opportunities and profit potential. All FABI Award applicants must be willing and able to ship product samples to each judge in early February 2024. The 2024 FABI Award judges are: 

    • Zia Ahmed (Senior Director, The Ohio State University)  
    • Katie Belflower (Editor, Technomic) 
    • Pat Cobe (Senior Editor, Restaurant Business & Foodservice Director)
    • Becky Davis (Director of Culinary Innovation, The Wendy’s Company)
    • Marion Gibson (Culinary Development Director, Aramark)
    • Farley Kaiser (Senior Director of Culinary Innovation, McLane Fresh)
    • Ana Maria Rodriguez (Chief Food Innovation & Quality Officer, Pizza Hut International)
    • Robin Rosenberg (Vice President, Chef de Cuisine, Levy Restaurants)
    • Bret Thorn (Senior Food & Beverage Editor, Informa Food & Restaurant Group)

Ana Maria, Chief Food Innovation & Quality Officer at Pizza Hut Global and 2024 judge, added, “The FABI Awards are the pinnacle of recognition in the food industry. Winning a FABI Award means that experienced judges from across the food industry have all agreed that your product is truly 'the best of the best.’ We welcome all companies, from startups to industry giants, to participate because culinary creativity knows no boundaries. I'm eagerly looking forward to celebrating our next FABI Award recipients at the 2024 Show!"

The deadline for FABI Award submissions is January 10, 2024. The awardees will be officially announced in March 2024. To qualify, all FABI submissions must have been introduced within 24 months prior to the 2024 Show. Application information for the 2024 FABI Awards including the fee to apply, is available online.  

For more information and to register, visit Connect with the Show online on X (Formerly Twitter), Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn for event updates.

The National Restaurant Association Show, Hotel-Motel Show is owned and operated by Winsight LLC in partnership with the National Restaurant Association.

About Winsight LLC
Winsight LLC is a business-to-business information, event and market intelligence company serving the restaurant and noncommercial foodservice, convenience and petroleum retailing and grocery industries. Winsight provides research and analytics, branding solutions, face-to-face opportunities, lead generation initiatives, and content marketing services through products including subscription data products, reports, research tools, research programs, fully custom studies, conferences, custom marketing services, meetings, print, digital trade media and tradeshows, including the National Restaurant Association Show.

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