Do you have trouble finding the right people to join your restaurant or new hires don’t always work out the way you thought they would? The National Restaurant Association (NRA), in partnership with the U.S. Department of Labor, set out to solve that problem and this week introduced the industry’s first-ever Food and Beverage Service Competency Model that will help identify the best potential employees and the skills needed to excel.

Beef prices last year in the United States were the highest they have been since 1987 because of the country’s declining cattle supply and increased demand. This year, however, we expect the industry to see the price of beef fall as the country begins to import beef from Ireland.

With all the scrutiny the food industry has been under with consumers demanding more transparency on the food they consume, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration added to the industry’s responsibilities last month by finalizing its menu labeling requirements for food establishments. “Americans eat and drink about one-third of their calories away from home and people today expect clear information about the products they consume,” FDA Commissioner Margaret A. Hamburg, M.D. said in a press release.

Two of the largest wine and food festivals in the United States are four-day, star-studded gatherings that showcase the talents of the world’s most renowned wine and spirits producers, chefs and culinary personalities. But behind the glitz and glamour of the two festivals are noteworthy causes and a school that were really the driving forces for creating these two events.

Debra Levy Picard was first intrigued with cooking as a child. She remembers watching Julia Child and writing down her recipes and preparing them for her family at just 14 years old. After doing some market research, Picard found that men have a desire to enter the kitchen, but the motivation, support and resources were not available.

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