Wednesday, September 14, 2011

NRA seeks innovation entries

National Restaurant Association Seeks Cutting-Edge Equipment for 2012 Kitchen Innovations Awards
Award recipients to be recognized in exclusive pavilion at NRA Show 2012

( Chicago) The National Restaurant Association ( is calling on foodservice equipment manufacturers to apply for its 2012 Kitchen Innovations™ Awards. Selected by an independent panel of experts, the award recipients represent the most groundbreaking equipment on the market that will cut costs and improve productivity and food quality in restaurant operations. They will be featured in the Kitchen Innovations Pavilion at the 2012 National Restaurant Association Restaurant, Hotel-Motel Show® (May 5-8 at Chicago’s McCormick Place).

As the global restaurant and hospitality industry’s premier trade show, the NRA Show brings together more restaurant and hospitality buyers and equipment manufacturers than any other industry event. Previous Kitchen Innovations award recipients have received national and international attention for their revolutionary products.

“Our previous Kitchen Innovations Award recipients have gained recognition as industry-leading manufacturers of foodservice equipment that significantly helps restaurant operator profitability and efficiency, so we are excited to see this year’s award submissions,” said David Gilbert, Chief Operating Officer of the National Restaurant Association. “Product innovation is an important driver toward restaurant sales growth and cost management. By identifying back-of-the-house equipment that is truly cutting edge, we hope to help the nation’s nearly one million restaurants grow and succeed.”

Award recipients will be showcased in the Kitchen Innovations Pavilion in its new central location on the exhibit floor. Throughout the four-day NRA Show, there are countless opportunities to interact with U.S. and international dealers, distributors and chain, multi-unit and independent operators, corporate decision-makers and news media during one-on-one, interactive demonstrations.

All applications are judged by an independent, expert panel of industry leaders. New this year to the judging panel is Jim Krueger, Jr., chief F&B research and development, Headquarters, of the Air Force Services Agency HQ AFSVA. Krueger will be joining  other notable panelists including Dan Bendall (principal, FoodStrategy, Inc.), Martin Cowley (senior manager design and standards, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts), William Eaton (chairman of the board, Cini-Little International), Robert Forrester (principal, Restaurant Industry Solutions), Foster F. Frable Jr. (founding partner, Clevenger Frable LaVallee), Aaron LaMotte (director, Sodexo Performance Interiors), Robert Marshall (vice president, U.S. operations, McDonald's Corporation), and Kathleen H. Seelye (managing partner, Ricca Newmark Design).

The deadline to apply for the 2012 Kitchen Innovations Awards is December 21, 2011. Award recipients will be announced in February. Companies interested in applying or receiving more information should visit, or call Eric Rude at 312-853-2525.

The annual National Restaurant Association Restaurant, Hotel-Motel Show is the largest single gathering of restaurant, foodservice and lodging professionals. NRA Show 2012 will be held May 5-8, at McCormick Place in Chicago. The event attracts 58,000+ attendees and visitors from all 50 states and 100+ countries, and showcases the latest products, services, innovative ideas, up-to-the-minute information about trends and issues and other growth opportunities than any other industry event. For more information, visit the Show Web site at

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