Wednesday, July 9, 2014

IDEA ZONE at the #LRAEXPO14: Rest your feet, gain some valuable insight

With all the excitement that’s in store for you at the Louisiana Restaurant Association's 61st Louisiana Foodservice & Hospitality EXPO, we urge you to pace yourself. You’ll be doing a lot of walking, but we’ve got a solution if you need a little time out from all the show floor happenings—the IDEA ZONE. While taking a seat, you’ll gain expert insight into running your restaurant more smoothly and legally in some cases.

Now in its third year, the IDEA ZONE was designed to offer restaurateurs, quick, informative express presentations right on the show floor. Here’s the Sunday line up of topics for your consideration as you map out your itinerary for the EXPO.

The health care law implementation deadline is right around the corner and the Affordable Care Update kicks off the Sunday series at 11:30 a.m. What’s on the horizon as it pertains to the healthcare law? Do you know? Are you sure? If you aren’t or need a refresher, UnitedHealthcare’s Kimberlee Vandervoorn and BancorpSouth’s Scott McKnight will school you on the latest deadlines and regulations and how you can prepare for the newest effects on your business.

The Catering Coach Sandy
Korem presents How to
price a menu for off-site
catering, Sunday, Aug. 3
1:45 p.m. in the IDEA ZONE.
Are you in the market for new restaurant equipment? If the answer is yes, stop by the IDEA ZONE at 12:30 p.m. for Energy efficiency for your restaurant with Frank Johnson, PhD of the Gas Technology Institute. Dr. Johnson will give you a quick historical overview of and the drivers behind the development of appliances for commercial foodservice facilities. By installing more efficient appliance, you’ll also learn how efficiency can help you save time AND money. Who in our business can’t use more time and money?

More and more restaurants are tapping into the catering business because it’s a great way to add a lucrative profit stream to your existing restaurant business. The Catering Coach Sandy Korem brings you her 20 years of expertise in the 1:45 p.m. session How to price a menu for off-site catering. Korem will help restaurant owners learn the ins and outs of pricing a catering menu for off-site events. These tips will help you immediately generate money through catering.

Up next is a topic that’s becoming more and more relevant in this day in age—Food allergies: myths busted. The number of Americans affected by food allergies is estimated at 15 million and that number is trending higher every year. Dining out can be a challenge for them and their families and friends. National Restaurant Association’s David Crownover will bust those myths for you and share the benefits of the ServSafe Allergens online training resource so you and your staff can serve this guest population safely and earn you their repeat business. Read more about the benefits of ServSafe Allergens training in our article, Serving guests with food allergies safely can grow your business here.

Locally-sourced ingredients topped the list of the 2014 NRA Chef’s Hottest Trends Survey. With the rise in beef prices due to drought conditions in the West and Midwestern U.S., we bring you the session Keeping Louisiana cattle and beef local. Anne Babin and John Lalla of Natco Food Service Merchants will share their business experience and led an open discussion with local ranchers who are passionate about bringing you the best Louisiana genetics, which guarantees you the highest quality steaks.

Located at the end of Aisle 100, the IDEA ZONE is located conveniently next to the Community Coffee trolley and features seating and high boy tables in the back for your convenience. Of course, we don’t expect you to spend your day listening to presentations, but hopefully, you’ll find one or two that can help you become an even more successful restaurant owner. Plan to grab a cup of joe (or a cocktail from one of our exhibiting beverage companies) and pull up a seat!

To attend sessions in the IDEA ZONE, you need to register to attend the EXPO. LRA restaurant members receive four complimentary admissions to the EXPO and registration is easier than ever before here

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