The Institute of Food Technologists (IFT) recently announced that it will transition the 2021 annual event and food expo, slated for July 19-21 at McCormick Place in Chicago, to a fully digital experience. The move comes in an effort to prioritize the health and safety of participants and the broader community throughout ongoing developments of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“After thoughtful consideration, IFT’s Board of Directors made the decision to transition IFT’s onsite annual event and food expo into a fully digital experience,” said IFT President Noel Anderson, PhD. “We believe this to be the best and safest course of action in light of the evolving COVID-19 pandemic developments.”

Since its onset 80 years ago, IFT’s annual event has convened professionals and solutions providers from around the world to share and highlight the latest trends, ingredients, product solutions, research, and insights shaping the future of food. The 2021 digital experience is being designed with the same purpose in mind and will allow event participants to explore the topics and content that matter most to them in the safest possible manner. Announcing this change now allows IFT’s valued award recipients, attendees, exhibitors, and stakeholders the time needed to make necessary planning adjustments, as well as keep focused on their important work of ensuring the safety and availability of our global food supply.

“This was not an easy decision for our Board to make, but the health and well-being of our members, partners, colleagues, exhibitors, and attendees is our top priority. We believe a digital experience is the safest option,” said IFT CEO Christie Tarantino-Dean. “We have been planning several new and innovative ways to engage the global food community through a new state-of-the-art platform and are excited to be sharing more information soon.”

Details regarding the new virtual experience will be shared in the coming weeks through a variety of communications and on Frequently asked questions regarding this transition are also provided at