National Restaurant Association Show Taking Applications for Kitchen Innovation Awards

It’s time, once again, to showcase the gold standard of foodservice equipment innovation. The National Restaurant Association Show, the premier event to learn about foodservice technology innovations, unique ingredients, and emerging trends in the restaurant industry, is now accepting applications for the 2021 Kitchen Innovation (KI) Awards. The KI Awards program recognizes the year’s most forward-thinking and cutting-edge innovations that meaningfully improve foodservice operations.

“Each year, we wait in anticipation for the KI Awards submissions so we can hear about the industry’s latest and most ingenious products that are certain to shape the future of the industry,” says Tom Cindric, President of Winsight Exhibitions. “Given today’s challenges, we are more excited than ever to honor companies that develop progressive equipment that increases efficiencies, productivity, and ultimately, the bottom line.”

The KI Award products are traditionally honored for helping industry growth through a focus on automation, efficiency, safety improvements, sustainability, waste solutions, and more. Each 2021 KI Awardee will be featured in the KI Showroom at the 2021 Show, to be held May 22-25 at McCormick Place in Chicago.

The KI Showroom draws high-profile crowds with dedicated exhibit space for each KI Awardee, open spaces for conversations, and Fireside Chats where experts share insights about implementing innovative equipment solutions. Throughout the four-day event, the KI Showroom will welcome operators, dealers, consultants, and media professionals where they will have the opportunity to see product demonstrations and connect with each award recipient.

"As a global company, the KI Award accreditation has given UNOX industry wide credibility for bringing innovative solutions to customers worldwide,” adds Mark Klindera, President of UNOX North America. “Our 2020 KI Awarded EVEREO – THE HOT FRIDGE technology has quickly been adopted by operators as a solution for food preservation during the pandemic. The combined timing of receiving the award and roll out of EVEREO could not have been better."

All KI Awardees receive industry-wide exposure before and after the Show. This prestigious endorsement can open doors with operators, media, and dealers. Additional benefits as a return on the investment include:

Validation and credibility from a panel of expert industry judges, including operators, consultants, and specifiers

Turnkey exhibit space in the highly trafficked KI Showroom

KI Awards logo and custom signage for use in marketing efforts for the life of the product

High-profile exposure on and off the Show floor

Increased media coverage and visibility with influential dealers and operators

Exposure through Show attendee marketing, including listings on the National Restaurant Association Show’s website and emails

Manufacturers’ recognition as an industry leader

Sale increases from top quality attendees at the Show

Chosen by an independent panel of judges comprised of industry leaders and internationally recognized food facility consultants, multi-unit executives, and design experts, the 2021 KI Award recipients will reflect the trends and topics most important to foodservice operators today—and showcase the future of the industry. The deadline to apply is December 16, 2020. To qualify, all equipment innovations must have been introduced within 24 months prior to the 2021 Restaurant Show. Application information for the 202 KI Awards is available online.

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