It is hard to believe, but this year is nearly over. When a year comes to an end we often stop and reflect. What did I accomplish? What were the significant events throughout the year? What am I grateful for? 

Angie Burlison
Angie Burlison
Executive Director, Retail Confectioners International

At RCI we have accomplished a lot throughout this year. We started with a historic tour of Pennsylvania, then held our 93rd Annual Convention in Cincinnati and finished in Buffalo, New York. At our Fall Regional in Buffalo, RCI members were able to tour seven confectionery-related companies. During their tour days they learned the ins and outs of sponge candy, a local favorite. They also had the unique opportunity to tour some key suppliers in the industry. The event included a full education day. Attendees learned key business practices including succession planning, employee relations through emotional intelligence and the history of moulding. And, at the Candy Clinic members shared their own accomplishments such as new products, marketing ideas and ways to communicate and train their growing staff.

Another significant event was our first Mechanics of Chocolate Moulding course held immediately after the Fall Regional. The course offered students an in-depth training on various moulding techniques. In 2014, we plan to continue to focus on education for our members at our events and through special courses. Chocolate Boot Camp continues to be a key education course for the fundamentals of chocolate making. Registration is now open for this four-day course in February 2014; sign up at

We are grateful for the successful year we have had and we’re looking to the future. We have been working on 2014 and have some exciting events coming up, including:

  • A Winter Getaway in Barbados in January
  • Our 94th Annual Convention & Industry Expo in St. Louis in June
  • Our fall regional event in Las Vegas in August. 

More information is available on all of our events at 

I am particularly grateful for the opportunity to join the confectionery industry this year. I have already had the chance to meet so many wonderful candy makers who have welcomed me and I look forward to meeting many more. Spending time in various retail shops watching candy makers at their craft has given me a new outlook on the world of confections, and I see it as much more than just a sweet treat. 

I hope you have a great end to your 2013 and wish you a Happy New Year!  

Upcoming RCI Events & Education Courses:

RCI Winter Getaway
Jan. 20-24, 2014
Bridgetown, Barbados
Hilton Barbados Resort

Chocolate Boot Camp
Feb. 24-27, 2014
Joplin, Mo.
Candy House Gourmet Chocolates
Registration is open


94th Annual Convention & Industry Expo
June 16-20, 2014
St. Louis, Mo.
Hyatt Regency St. Louis at the Arch


 For more information about upcoming RCI events, visit