By Jeff Scudillo, Promotion in Motion
President, National Association of Concessionaires
Since its inception as ShoWest many years ago, the National Association of Concessionaires (NAC) has been an active and engaged stakeholder in what has now become CinemaCon. Many of our members, now well over 600 strong and growing, belong to both NATO and NAC, so it is a very synergistic and natural partnership that continues to thrive. Don’t forget to visit our members on the trade show floor, and please stop by the NAC booth #1030F to say hello.
This long-standing commitment to a strong affiliation with the exhibition industry and its trade groups may never be as important as this year. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced on December 1, 2014, that within one year all food-service operations with 20 or more outlets must list calorie counts on all menus and menu boards. These new regulations also mandate that upon request food-service operations must also provide complete nutritional analysis of all products served. These new regulations incorporate movie theaters with 20 or more facilities.
In an effort to address these new regulations and make the mandates more tolerable, NAC, in conjunction with NATO, is hosting a workshop at CinemaCon entitled, “The How-To Guide for the FDA Menu Labeling Regulations.” This session will take place on Wednesday afternoon, April 22, 3:30 to 4:45 p.m., and will feature Dr. Claudine Kavanaugh of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), who will also be available to answer your questions. This panel will discuss all aspects of the new regulations while providing real-world and practical solutions so that you may be able to comply effective December 1, 2015. Don Lear, the Hershey Company and Government Relations Committee Chair for NAC, will moderate.
NAC activities at CinemaCon get started much earlier in the week. On Monday, April 20, we hosted the 31st Annual Al Lapidus / Variety Boys & Girls Club Golf Classic at the beautiful Bali Hai Golf Club just minutes from Caesars Palace. All proceeds from the event benefit Variety Boys and Girls Club Scholarship Foundation, the Will Rogers Motion Pictures Pioneers Foundation, and NAC Educational Programs. We are pleased to report that sponsorship and participation are up significantly over the past few years, making this an extremely successful fund-raising event for some very important causes.
We are also quite proud to play a part at the All-Industry Breakfast on Tuesday, April 21. Adam Gottlieb, ACS, EVP sales and procurement for Continental Concession Supplies Inc., has been selected as the 2015 Bert Nathan Memorial Award Honoree. The award designates active involvement in NAC, providing positive leadership direction, significant contributions to the development and professionalism of the concessions industry with significant accomplishments and longevity to the theater concessions industry, and current, active involvement in theater concessions at the executive level. We hope that you will join us in congratulating Adam.
In addition to our presence at CinemaCon, NAC is a daily advocate for all things concessions. We are just wrapping up a two-year cycle of the popular Regional Seminar Series featuring “Building the Experience,” a four-hour educational experience for entry-level managers, supervisors, and those interested in concessions management. The seminar has already traveled to the Caribbean, South America, the Middle East, and Asia.
I would also take this opportunity to invite you to our very own Concession & Hospitality Expo that will take place July 21-24, 2015, at the Hyatt Regency Cincinnati and the adjacent Duke Energy Convention Center. The annual event brings together the top food-and-beverage concession leaders in the recreation and leisure-time industry. Expo is an educational conference in its 33rd year, covering a wide range of concessions and food-service topics.
It would take several pages to fill you in on everything going on with NAC, but rest assured we are as active, vital and relevant as ever and are delivering great value to our members and the industry. To find out more about us, I would recommend you visit www.naconline.org. We thank and congratulate Mitch and his team on another great CinemaCon, and wish everyone involved a great show!