Food Entrepreneur

KANSAS CITY — Thousands of innovators, product developers, food scientists and company leaders will convene at IFT FIRST, the Institute of Food Technologists’ annual event in Chicago July 16-19. An expanded Startup Pavilion on the show floor is set to feature 100 food and food technology exhibitors who will participate in a multi-day pitch competition.

In this episode of Well FEd by Food Entrepreneur, Corrine Calice, PhD, senior director of knowledge and learning experiences for the Institute of Food Technologists, discussed how food and beverage startups can benefit from attending or exhibiting.

Dr. Calice oversees the development of all educational programming for professionals in the science of food as well as IFT’s annual Global Food System Challenge and the Certified Food Scientist credential.  

“Startups have been a major market force in the food industry,” Dr. Calice said. “IFT did a research project a few years ago on our food science education degree program. We found that 35% of new graduates in food science are considering entrepreneurship as a career path. We also found that an awful lot of food startups are not familiar with IFT and all that we offer to assist them in building their business, finding suppliers or partners, getting to market, staying compliant with food laws and regulations. We want to be sure to spread the word that IFT is the place to be … especially for food and beverage startups because they may not have a food science professional on their staff… IFT has education, networking and resources to help food companies both large and small.”

The conversation also touched on trending ingredients and innovative solutions to significant food system challenges.

“The event is focusing on innovation in the face of crisis, and I think it’s really timely,” Dr. Calice said. “We’ve got so many different crises whether it’s supply chain constraints or legal — we’re seeing a titanium dioxide issue bubble up right now — all kinds of different challenges that product developers and food entrepreneurs have to face in order to bring healthy food to market and address things like climate change or geopolitical conflict.”

Tune into this episode of Well FEd byFood Entrepreneurto learn more about the upcoming event and opportunities for food and beverage startups.

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