It seems like just a few months ago that the curtain closed on another successful International Baking Industry Exposition (IBIE). But we began planning for IBIE 2016 just a couple of months after the show wrapped up. Every group involved, including ABA, has been pressed to step up its game.

ABA is bringing tremendous additional value to the show. Specifically, ABA is leading a number of educational innovations for IBIE 2016, including: “Mid-Year Consumer Update” from Todd Hale; “Closing the Workforce Gap” to retain and attract new industry talent; “Developing Future Leaders” focusing on leadership and management skills; “Policy Priorities for Bakers,” an interactive dialogue with the ABA policy team; and “Energy Efficiency,” on practical, cost-effective, how-to tips to save bakers considerable energy costs.

ABA has also secured a strategic partnership with the Global Cold Chain Alliance (GCCA) creating an innovative cold storage pavilion at IBIE. This will allow bakers to explore the potential benefits of cold and frozen storage—and will allow GCCA members to network and discuss cold-storage solutions with bakers.

ABA also is aggressively promoting a revamped Corporate Meeting Program for ABA members to conduct strategic planning, sales and marketing, or management meetings steps away from the IBIE floor. These meetings will draw a deeper level of participation from member companies, as well as allow for interaction with suppliers and even customers. The response has been strong and continues to grow.

The most important contribution ABA will add to IBIE is a very highly motivated group of customers on the show floor conducting business with exhibitors. Baker attendance is tracking ahead of IBIE 2013’s record-breaking attendance. ABA members, according to our survey data and economic analysis, are projecting to invest over $486 million in capital expenditures in the coming year. It is IBIE time indeed!