100+ Most Influential Restaurant Industry Associations

15. The Independent Restaurant Coalition (IRC)

Saving local restaurants affected by COVID-19

Founded by an independent group of chefs to save local restaurants affected by the global COVID-19 crisis, the Independent Restaurant Coalition is growing fast.

Local, independent restaurants contribute $1 trillion to the U.S economy and represent 4% of the GDP. IRC estimates that $150 billion of cash flow is needed for this segment to be able to pay their bills, rent, and taxes in these challenging times. And that is without taking the cost of salaries into account. As of April 2020, approximately seven million people within the industry in the U.S. had been laid off.

IRC aims to create a powerful movement with the mission to get the Congress to establish an Independent Restaurant Stabilization Fund of at least $120 billion to help restaurants with the necessary capital and support to reopen, stay open, and empower the local economy again.

OVERVIEW

  • Founded: 2020
  • Location: Across the U.S.
  • Community: Chefs and restaurateurs around the country. Organizations like Food Policy Action, the James Beard Foundation, and others working to support the restaurant community.
  • Number of members: Not specified
  • Website: www.saverestaurants.com

MEMBERSHIP

  • Membership categories: Not specified.
  • Member benefits: Networking, a united voice to speak directly to lawmakers making decisions about the future of the restaurant industry, daily information and insights about key legislative updates, marketing collateral to help mobilize your community and network.
  • Cost and payment options: Not specified.
  • How to join: Enter your email address via the Independent Restaurant Coalition’s webform. They will then get in touch to tell you more about the process. Anyone that shares the same mission can join.

OTHER PROGRAMS & USEFUL INFORMATION

  • The Independent Restaurant Coalition proposes changes to the CARES Act, which you can read more about on their website. 

16.The International Foodservice Distributors Association (IFDA)

The premier trade organization representing the foodservice distribution industry

With a combined annual sales volume of approximately $300 billion, foodservice distributors play a significant role in the economy of the U.S. This industry segment ensures a productive and safe supply chain of food and products for more than one million restaurants and foodservice outlets in the U.S.

The International Foodservice Distributors Association (IFDA) is the leading trade organization representing the foodservice distribution industry in the U.S. IFDA member companies manage facilities in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and around the world.

OVERVIEW

  • Founded: 1906 
  • Location: Headquarters in Virginia, with a presence throughout the country.
  • Community: IFDA member companies operate more than 800 distribution facilities in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and around the world.
  • Number of members: Not specified
  • Website: www.ifdaonline.org

MEMBERSHIP

  • Membership categories: Distributors, Manufacturers, Allied.
  • Member benefits:  Assistance with government relations, industry introductions, education, research, and more. 
  • Cost and payment options: Not specified.
  • How to join: You can download the application form online.

OTHER PROGRAMS & USEFUL INFORMATION

  • See industry news & insights on IFDA’s website.

17.International Special Dietary Foods Industries (ISDI)

The leading global expert association representing the special dietary food sector 

International Special Dietary Foods Industries (ISDI) is the leading expert association on special dietary foods. It brings together American as well as international associations specialized in this segment from more than 20 countries across all continents.

ISDI is also an industry platform for debate on regulatory, technical, and scientific issues regarding special dietary foods.

OVERVIEW

  • Founded: Not specified. 
  • Location: New York, with global presence.
  • Community: National and regional associations active in the special dietary food sector from more than 20 countries, representing the entire special dietary foods sector.
  • Number of members: Not specified
  • Website: www.isdi.org

MEMBERSHIP

  • Membership categories: Not specified.
  • Member benefits: Facilitation of the dialogue between policy makers, government, and the industry. Privileged access to worldwide expertise and the latest science, industry research, guidance, events, and much more. 
  • Cost and payment options: Not specified.
  • How to join: If you are interested in learning more about becoming a member or are ready to join ISDI, enter your email address via their webform. ISDI will then get in touch.

OTHER PROGRAMS & USEFUL INFORMATION

  • See industry publications & resources on ISDI’s website.

18. The Sustainable Food Trade Association (SFTA)

Building a more socially just and environmentally sound food system

The Sustainable Food Trade Association’s (SFTA) core objective is to build the capacity of the organic food trade to transition to sustainable business models. SFTA serves as a platform that unites businesses to learn, improve, and share best practices.

SFTA believes that the organic sector must integrate environmentally sound, socially just business practices using a systems-based approach in order to reach its full potential. The association supports its members in implementing creative and sustainable business practices across the supply chain, from farm to retail.

OVERVIEW

  • Founded: 2008 
  • Location: Headquarters in Boulder, Colorado.
  • Community: A mix of organic producers, processors, manufacturers, distributors and retailers, as well as related vendors, suppliers, aligned organizations and individuals.
  • Number of members: Not specified
  • Website: www.sustainablefoodtrade.org

MEMBERSHIP

  • Membership categories: Full Members and Friends.
  • Member benefits: Support and resources to integrate sustainability from farm to retail. This includes educational tools, annual consultations, analytic modules, networking and leadership recognition to define, measure, and improve sustainability performance.
  • Cost and payment options: Not specified.
  • How to join: You can sign up online using the link above where the membership benefits are outlined. To learn more about the benefits, fees, and application process, visit each category on SFTA’s website.

OTHER PROGRAMS & USEFUL INFORMATION

  • See insights about Sustainable Reporting – Measure what matters on SFTA’s website.

19. The International Food and Beverage Technology Association (IFBTA)

Promoting the utilization of technology within all segments of the global food and beverage industry

The International Food and Beverage Technology Association (IFBTA) promotes the use of technology within the global food and beverage industries.

It’s especially focused on education, certification, standards, research, and networking. IFBTA also collaborates with other industry associations and groups in support of their technology-related initiatives to reach common goals more efficiently. 

Managed by a board of top-level food and beverage IT executives, the IFBTA incorporates operator and supplier participation and input to promote all areas of technology education, networking, and solutions used in the food and beverage industries.

OVERVIEW

  • Founded: Not specified. 
  • Location: New York, with presence throughout the U.S.
  • Community: All segments of the global food and beverage industry, including restaurant/foodservice, hospitality/lodging, gaming, onsite, beer/wine/spirits retailing, c-stores, catering, travel and other related segments of the food and beverage industry.
  • Number of members: Not specified
  • Website: www.ifbta.org

MEMBERSHIP

  • Membership categories: Individual, Corporate, Industry – with several subcategories within each.
  • Member benefits: Local chapter membership, certifications, resources, events, networking, and much more.
  • Cost and payment options: Starts from $50 USD
  • How to join: You can sign up online.

OTHER PROGRAMS & USEFUL INFORMATION

  • The IFBTA and Round It Up America Announce Alliance to Deliver Charitable-Giving Technology to the Hospitality Industry. More details on IFBTA’s website.

20. Association of Nutrition & Foodservice Professionals (ANFP)

The expert in Foodservice Management and Food Safety

The Association of Nutrition & Foodservice Professionals (ANFP) is the leading organization of professionals involved in the management of nutrition and foodservice in the U.S.

Dedicated to providing optimum nutritional care through foodservice management and food safety, ANFP is also home to the Certified Dietary Manager (CDM), Certified Food Protection Professional (CFPP) credential. These certifications translate to having passed the nationally-recognized CDM Credentialing Exam and fulfilling the requirements needed to maintain certified status as a Certified Dietary Manager.

OVERVIEW

  • Founded: 1960
  • Location: New York, with presence throughout the U.S.
  • Community: ANFP members work in hospitals, long-term care, schools, correctional facilities, and other non-commercial foodservice settings.
  • Number of members: 15,000+
  • Website: www.anfponline.org

MEMBERSHIP

  • Membership categories: Pre-professional, Professional, Allied Professional.
  • Member benefits: Publications and resources, employment services, education, professional development, and certification programs. ANFP also monitors industry trends and legislative issues, and publishes one of the industry’s most respected magazines. 
  • Cost and payment options: Starts from 37 USD (Half Year) 
  • How to join: You can sign up online.

OTHER PROGRAMS & USEFUL INFORMATION

  • See a detailed overview of ANFP’s approved training programs on their website.

21. American Culinary Federation (ACF):

The largest professional chefs’ organization in North America

The American Culinary Federation, Inc. (ACF), a professional organization for chefs and cooks, was founded by three chefs’ organizations: the Société Culinaire Philanthropique, the Vatel Club and the Chefs de Cuisine Association of America.American Culinary Federation

Today, ACF is the leader in offering educational resources, training, apprenticeship, competitions and programmatic accreditation designed to enhance professional growth for all current and future chefs and pastry chefs. Moreover, ACF operates the most comprehensive culinary certification program in the world. ACF is also home to ACF Culinary Team USA, the official representative for the United States in major international competitions.

OVERVIEW

  • Founded: 1929
  • Location: Headquarter in New York with presence across the U.S.
  • Community: Chefs and cooks belonging to more than 150 chapters in four regions across the U.S.
  • Number of members: 15,000 members
  • Website: www.acfchefs.org

MEMBERSHIP

  • Membership categories: Membership categories are designed to follow your professional culinary career. See detailed overview of membership types on ACF’s website. 
  • Member benefits: Certifications, education, competitions, industry resources, networking, and much more. 
  • Cost and payment options: Not specified. 
  • How to join: You can sign up online.

OTHER PROGRAMS & USEFUL INFORMATION

  • ACF is the leader in offering educational resources, training, apprenticeship, competitions and programmatic accreditation designed to enhance professional growth for all current and future chefs and pastry chefs. 

22. The American Association of Meat Processors (AAMP):

North America’s largest meat trade organization

The American Association of Meat Processors (AAMP) is North America’s largest meat trade organization. AAMP’s mission is to provide quality service, industry insights, education, regulatory representation, and networking opportunities to grow its members’ businesses.

OVERVIEW

  • Founded: 1987
  • Location: Headquarters in Elizabethtown. Represented all over the world.
  • Community: Medium-sized and smaller meat, poultry and food businesses: slaughterers, packers, processors, wholesalers, in-home food service business, retailers, deli and catering operators, and industry suppliers. AAMP members are from the U.S., Canadian provinces and several foreign countries.
  • Number of members: 1,300+
  • Website: www.aamp.com

MEMBERSHIP

  • Membership categories: Processor, Supplier, Allied, Associate.
  • Member benefits: On a daily basis, AAMP assists a number of processors with inspection-related issues. Whether it is assisting processors on how to respond to noncompliance reports or providing the facts of what the regulation really is. 
  • Cost and payment options: From $50 to $350 USD.
  • How to join: Fill out a request for membership on their website.

OTHER PROGRAMS & USEFUL INFORMATION

  • AAMP presents several industry resources and insights on their website.

23. Council of Restaurant and Hotel Trainers (CHART):

The leading resource for hospitality training professionals

With more than 700 members from more than 400 multi-unit restaurant and hotel companies, CHART represents a workforce of almost five million. Based on its 4 guiding principles (Learning, Sharing, Growing, and Caring) and key strategies Chart improves performance and advances hospitality industry training.

OVERVIEW

  • Founded: 1970
  • Location: Headquarters in New Jersey with presence across the U.S.
  • Community: A mix of hospitality trainers from foodservice, restaurant, and lodging companies.
  • Number of members: 450+ members from more than 300 of the top multi-unit restaurants and lodging companies in the U.S.
  • Website: www.chart.org

MEMBERSHIP

  • Membership categories: Individual Memberships and Company Memberships. 
  • Member benefits: Access to networks, education, and resources, and much more. 
  • Cost and payment options: Individual memberships: $295 to join, annual renewal is $195. Company plans start from 5 memberships for $1,000.
    How to join: You can sign up online.

OTHER PROGRAMS & USEFUL INFORMATION

  • CHART offers many opportunities and levels of involvement for volunteerism and community service. They also offer scholarships.

24. International Corporate Chefs Association (ICCA):

The first chefs association designed exclusively for corporate chefs

The International Corporate Chefs Association (ICCA) is the first chefs association designed exclusively for corporate chefs from the largest U.S. chains and multi-unit operations. ICCA is focused on providing chefs with the tools needed to advance in their career, as well as creating a network of corporate chefs from the nation’s leading multi-unit foodservice operations. The board of directors has been set-up to include most major industry segments.

Being a relatively new association, the events of ICCA are exclusive, smaller, and ideal for networking. Only members, selected media, and a small sponsor community are on the guestlist. 

OVERVIEW

  • Founded: 2002
  • Location: Headquarter in Florida with presence across the U.S.
  • Community: Membership is limited to corporate chefs from the top 200 multi-unit foodservice operations in the nation.
  • Number of members: 145+ (ICCA can accommodate up to 200)
  • Website: www.iccachefs.com

MEMBERSHIP

  • Membership categories: Membership is restricted to only the leading culinarian in each of the top 200 multi-unit foodservice operations. Consultants aren’t permitted to apply for membership – all members must work directly for the multi-unit operator. 
  • Member benefits: Access to up-to-date information on trends, training techniques, current issues, menu development, networking events, and other topics that affect your culinary staff and daily operations. 
  • Cost and payment options: Not specified. 
  • How to join: You can sign up online if you meet the requirements.

OTHER PROGRAMS & USEFUL INFORMATION

  • ICCA has a detailed FAQ section centered around their organization and the membership on their website.

25. International Franchise Association (IFA):

The world’s largest franchising membership organization

The International Franchise Association (IFA) started with the goal to serve the national franchising community and transformed into a global resource to enhance and promote franchising, advocating and protecting their community and their businesses. IFA is all about advancing the future of franchising.
International Franchise Association

Bridging the gap between franchise businesses and diverse communities, strengthening the franchising community, and implementing strategic initiatives that drive change around the world for many years. And, as IFA themselves put it, “we’re just getting started“.

OVERVIEW

  • Founded: 1960
  • Location: Headquarter in New York with presence across the U.S.
  • Community: Restaurants and other foodservice businesses 
  • Number of members: 1,150 franchisor members
  • Website: www.franchise.org

MEMBERSHIP

  • Membership categories: Franchisor, Franchisee, Supplier. 
  • Member benefits: IFA supports all your franchising needs, ranging from education, to mentoring, networking, and advocacy: A vibrant community, practical content, and tools that empower franchise growth are also a part of the package
  • Cost and payment options: Not specified. 
  • How to join: You can sign up online.

OTHER PROGRAMS & USEFUL INFORMATION

  • Franchise Action Network is IFA’s award-winning advocacy program.

26. International Foodservice Manufacturers Association (IFMA):

65+ years of experience serving Foodservice Manufacturers

The International Foodservice Manufacturers Association (IFMA) has established itself as a leading player focused on improving industry practices and relationships, while serving every foodservice manufacturer with the tools needed to navigate the future with confidence.

By providing insights, developing best practices and fostering connectivity through events and collaboration, IFMA motivates change that contributes to growth for its members and the foodservice sector. In close collaboration with its community and partners, IFMA enhances the foodservice experience all the way down to the consumer.

OVERVIEW

  • Founded: 1954
  • Location: Headquarter in Chicago with presence across the U.S.
  • Community: Foodservice manufacturer businesses 
  • Number of members: Not specified.
  • Website: www.ifmaworld.com

MEMBERSHIP

  • Membership categories: Franchisor, Franchisee, Supplier. 
  • Member benefits: Exclusive research, best practices, insights, events, and more. 
  • Cost and payment options: Based on annual foodservice sales volume. More details on their website.
  • How to join: Fill out the form on their website for general membership inquiries.

OTHER PROGRAMS & USEFUL INFORMATION

  • See detailed overview of IFMA’s programs & initiatives on their website.

27. The International Luxury Hotel Association (ILHA)

The luxury hospitality’s largest trade association

The International Luxury Hotel Association (ILHA) brings together leading hotel and travel companies, professionals, and governments with the common goal of improving standards and promoting innovation in the luxury segment of the hotel industry.

Through education, training and communication in three key areas that differentiate the luxury segment for the rest of the hotel industry: service, design and technology, they contribute to pushing the luxury hospitality industry forward.

OVERVIEW

  • Founded: 1955
  • Location: Headquarter in Florida, with a global presence.
  • Community: Professional luxury accommodation providers all over the world. 
  • Number of members:Not specified.
  • Website: www.luxuryhotelassociation.org

MEMBERSHIP

  • Membership categories: Student, Hotel, Vendor, Professional.
  • Member benefits: Industry research, education, consulting, events, seminars, discounts, and much more. 
  • Cost and payment options: Pricing ranges from $75-450 USD a year.
  • How to join: You can sign up online.

OTHER PROGRAMS & USEFUL INFORMATION

  • See detailed overview of events by FHRAI on their website.

28. Multicultural Foodservice & Hospitality Alliances (MFHA):

Building bridges and strengthening its members’ Cultural Intelligence

The Mission of MFHA is to bring the economic benefits of diversity and inclusion to the food and hospitality industry by building bridges and delivering solutions. MFHA commits to delivering more connections and opportunities to build its Members’ Cultural Intelligence to effectively engage multicultural employees, customers, and communities.

MFHA develops Cultural Intelligence products and services that enhance your value proposition and execution strategies.

OVERVIEW

  • Founded: 1996
  • Location: Headquarter in Providence with presence across the U.S.
  • Community: MFHA members include some of the most prominent, successful, and innovative brands in the foodservice and hospitality industry. Dedicated to building Cultural Intelligence within their companies & organizations.
  • Number of members:  Not specified.
  • Website: www.mhfa.net

MEMBERSHIP

  • Membership categories: Corporate and Individual. 
  • Member benefits: Exclusive research, connections and opportunities to build your Members’ Cultural Intelligence to effectively engage multicultural employees, customers, and communities. 
  • Cost and payment options: Individual membership costs between 0-75 USD/year.
  • How to join: Fill out the form on their website for corporate membership inquiries.

OTHER PROGRAMS & USEFUL INFORMATION

  • Showcase of the Stars is MFHA’s interactive career exploration event for multicultural high school and college students, designed to encourage the pursuit of a rewarding career in foodservice & hospitality.

29. The National Frozen & Refrigerated Foods Association (NFRA)

Promotes the Sales and Consumption of Frozen & Refrigerated Foods

The National Frozen & Refrigerated Foods Association (NFRA) is uniquely positioned as an all-industry trade association, representing the interests of every segment of the Frozen and Refrigerated Foods industry.

The mission of NFRA is to promote the consumption of Frozen & Refrigerated Foods through: Education, Training, Research, Sales Planning and Industry Dialogue.

OVERVIEW

  • Founded: Not specified. 
  • Location: Harrisburg, PA, with global presence 
  • Community: All segments within Frozen & Refrigerated Foods. See detailed overview of members on NFRA’s website. 
  • Number of members: Not specified.
  • Website: www.nfraweb.org

MEMBERSHIP

  • Membership categories: From Manufacturer to Sales Agent: There are several categories to choose from.
  • Member benefits: Resources, mentor programs, exclusive association and industry information, and much more. 
  • Cost and payment options: Specified under each membership type on the website.
  • How to join: You can sign up online.

OTHER PROGRAMS & USEFUL INFORMATION

  • NFRA is the sponsor of the March National Frozen Food Month, June Dairy Month, June/July Ice Cream and Novelties promotion and October Cool Food for Kids educational outreach program.
  • The organization also holds the annual Executive Conference in April and the National Frozen & Refrigerated Foods Convention in October.

30. The National Food Truck Association (NFTA):

Providing food trucks from coast to coast with great resources

The National Food Truck Association is a collection of regional Associations Nationwide. The group works together to enhance the industry through regulatory changes, education and outreach. As a united team, they ensure that food trucks are provided great resources and access to information needed to optimize their business results.

NFTA’s goal is to support food truck owners, regional associations and government agencies. They also act as a singular point of contact for the public looking to engage with food trucks. 

OVERVIEW

  • Founded: Not specified
  • Location: Headquarter in Los Angeles. 
  • Community: Vendors and associations within the Food Truck sector.
  • Number of members: Not specified.
  • Website: www.nationalfoodtrucks.org

MEMBERSHIP

  • Membership categories: Not specified.
  • Member benefits: The organization helps vendors and associations work cooperatively with municipalities and governmental bureaucracies to review codes, ordinances, and procedures so they can better address the realities of this new industry. It also works to provide members with better prices on supplies and services all food trucks use. Access to NFTA’s podcast, some consulting, events, and other insider information in your region. 
  • Cost and payment options: Not specified. 
  • How to join: You can sign up online.

OTHER PROGRAMS & USEFUL INFORMATION

  • NFTA also offers catering and location management services to make it easier for the public to take advantage of food truck services nationwide.

31. The National Grocers Association (NGA):

Exclusively focused on representing the independent supermarket sector

For nearly 40 years, the National Grocers Association (NGA) has represented independent supermarket operators in every district across the U.S., and the wholesalers that service them. 

Today, the National Grocers Association remains the only trade association exclusively focused on representing the independent sector of the food industry.

OVERVIEW

    • Founded: 1980
    • Location: Headquarter in Arlington. 
    • Community: Independent supermarket operators in every district across the country, wholesalers, affiliated associations, manufacturers, and service suppliers as well as other entrepreneurial companies that support NGA’s Mission and Philosophy.
    • Number of members: Not specified.
    • Website: www.nationalgrocers.org

MEMBERSHIP

  • Membership categories: Retailer, Wholesaler, Associate
  • Member benefits: Education, training, networking, support with government relations, and more. 
  • Cost and payment options: Not specified. 
  • How to join: You can sign up online.

OTHER PROGRAMS & USEFUL INFORMATION

  • NGA also focuses on training the next generation of foodservice operators.

32. The Specialty Coffee Association:

Representing 1,000s of coffee professionals all over the world

The Specialty Coffee Association represents thousands of coffee professionals, from producers to baristas, all over the world. Built on foundations of openness, inclusivity, and the power of shared knowledge, their global coffee community is focused on making specialty coffee a rewarding and sustainable activity for the entire value chain.

The SCA acts as a unifying force within the specialty coffee industry and works to make coffee better by fostering a global community and raising standards worldwide through a collaborative and progressive approach. As a member, you can lean back on SCA’s years of insights and inspiration from the specialty coffee community.

OVERVIEW

  • Founded: 1980
  • Location: Offices in California and Chelmsford in the UK. Represented all over the world.
  • Community: From coffee farmers to baristas and roasters, the membership spans the globe, encompassing every element of the coffee value chain.
  • Number of members:Not specified.
  • Website: www.sca.coffee

MEMBERSHIP

  • Membership categories: There are several different Company Member Categories.
  • Member benefits: Education, networking, advocacy, industry visibility, and more. 
  • Cost and payment options: From 285 to 1,600 Euros, depending on revenue.
  • How to join: You can sign up online.

OTHER PROGRAMS & USEFUL INFORMATION

  • SCA also offers Coffee Education Programs.

33. The Specialty Food Association

The leading advocate for the 150+ billion specialty food industry

The mission of the Specialty Food Association is to champion, nurture, and connect members to deliver innovative products and expand consumption of specialty foods.

Their Strategic Plan: “Forward 2022” maps out how the association will deliver on its mission through content (research, data, and insights), engagement (live and online events), and enablers (talent and technology) to position members for even more success.

OVERVIEW

  • Founded: 1952 
  • Location: Headquartered in New York, with a global presence 
  • Community: A mix of food artisans, importers and entrepreneurs.
  • Number of members: 3,500
  • Website: www.specialtyfood.com

MEMBERSHIP

  • Membership categories: Tailored membership programs and services designed to help guide, support and grow your businesses
  • Member benefits: Resources, mentor programs, exclusive association and industry information, and much more. 
  • Cost and payment options: Not specified.
  • How to join: You can sign up online.

OTHER PROGRAMS & USEFUL INFORMATION

  • See details about shows and events by the Specialty Food Association on their website.

34. National Association for Catering and Events (NACE)

The premier resource and community for catering and event professionals in the U.S

The National Association for Catering and Events (NACE) is the go-to resource and community for catering and event professionals all over the U.S.

By providing industry-leading education, resources, and a vibrant community to learn and grow from, NACE has been empowering catering and event professionals for more than 60 years. 

NACE is the first non-profit national organization that provides education, certification and a network of resources for catering and event professionals in all segments of the hospitality industry

OVERVIEW

  • Founded: 1958 
  • Location: Headquartered in Columbia, with a global presence 
  • Community: A mix of catering and event professionals all over the U.S.
  • Number of members: More than 40 chapters across the country and 3,500+ members.
  • Website: www.nace.net

MEMBERSHIP

  • Membership categories: From non-profit, to professional, legacy, and more.  
  • Member benefits: Education, resources, coaching, networking, local events at one of more than 40 chapters across the U.S., access to the NACE Membership Directory, volunteer leadership opportunities, money-saving programs, and more. 
  • Cost and payment options: Ranges between $55-415 USD.
  • How to join: You can sign up online.

OTHER PROGRAMS & USEFUL INFORMATION

  • See essential resources by NACE to grow your business on their website.

35. National Restaurant Association (NRA):

The world’s largest foodservice trade association

Representing and advocating on behalf of more than 500,000 restaurant businesses, The National Restaurant Association is the world’s largest foodservice trade and restaurant association.

Their mission is to advance, protect and lead America’s restaurant and foodservice industry into a new era of success and cooperation, improving the quality of life of its members. National_Restaurant_Association

NRA’s annual industry trade show, comprehensive industry research insights reports, and series of respected awards, are just a few examples of how they support and drive the restaurant industry forward. Its state associations also run regular networking and educational events.

NRA serves as a trusted adviser and frequently develops resources in different formats centered around key issues like food safety, sustainability, and credit card processing.

The National Restaurant Association Show is the largest event gathering foodservice and restaurant professionals being held in the U.S. annually. The show presents restaurant innovations, foodservice trends, and an opportunity for networking.

OVERVIEW

  • Founded: 1919
  • Location: Headquarter in Washington, DC. 
  • Community: Over 95% of the members are foodservice establishments. All segments of restaurants and foodservice operations and allied industries are represented, ranging from suppliers and distributors, to consultants, and students.
  • Number of members: 40,000+ members representing nearly 500,000 foodservice establishments across America. 
  • Website: www.restaurant.org

MEMBERSHIP

  • Membership categories: Restaurant, Allied, Faculty, Student, Government Funded Facility with Foodservice, International.
  • Member benefits: Access to research and benchmarking best practices to the 400,000 member locations. Industry advocacy is one of NRA’s standout features, benefiting members and nonmembers. As a member, you have the opportunity to engage in the advocacy process. The membership benefits vary by category. 
  • Cost and payment options: The NRA has a dual membership agreement with 53 state restaurant associations, therefore the cost to join NRA varies by state. Annual invoicing to be paid in full.
  • How to join: You can sign up online.

OTHER PROGRAMS & USEFUL INFORMATION

  • Training the next generation of foodservice operators is another main focus of NRA through its Education Foundation, providing scholarships, and its ProStart two-year program for high school students, complete with culinary competitions.

36. The Women’s Foodservice Forum

Advancing Women Leaders in the foodservice sector 

As a response to the fact that women often face barriers when aiming for career advancement, in the form of inconsistent opportunities, pay gaps, a lack of representation in critical decision-making roles, and more – the Women’s Foodservice Forum was born.

Every day, WFF works to accelerate the advancement of women leaders in the Food Industry. Their core belief — that work environments that create greater opportunities for women create greater opportunities for everyone — lays the foundation for everything they do.

OVERVIEW

  • Founded: 1989
  • Location: New York, with presence throughout the U.S.
  • Community: Women leaders and executive women in the industry.
  • Number of members: Not specified.
  • Website: www.wff.org

MEMBERSHIP

  • Membership categories: Women’s Foodservice Forum offers an annual standard membership for individuals, while companies can become partners.
  • Member benefits: Leadership development, role modeling and strategic networking for women and supports the Food Industry in cultivating the next generation of leaders. In 2020 WFF will launch new online Partner and Member Portals to provide daily inspiration and solutions for companies striving to advance women leaders and members building their careers.
  • Cost and payment options: Pricing starts from $99 per year.
  • How to join: You can join in different ways: 1) Register for an Event: You receive a complimentary one-year membership to WFF when you register for the Leadership Conference or a Leadership Development Workshop; 2) Company Partnership: If your company is a WFF Partner, there may be a WFF membership available to you through your employer; 3) Purchase a Membership online

OTHER PROGRAMS & USEFUL INFORMATION

  • See detailed overview of WFF’s events on their website.

37. The American Society of Baking:

Advancing the grain-based food industry, with representation in 40+ countries

The American Society of Baking is a community of baking industry professionals passionate about providing education, networking opportunities and professional development. Colleagues share knowledge, encourage and promote skill development and create resources that advance the industry and its workforce.

The Society’s mission is to facilitate this interaction by promoting personal growth and professional development through education and collaboration. It is through these interactions and contributions of its community that meaningful business relationships are created.

OVERVIEW

  • Founded: 1924
  • Location: Chicago, with global presence.
    Community:
    Commercial bakers, food technologists, engineers, and the suppliers of equipment, ingredients, and services in the grain-based food industry
  • Number of members: 1,400+ members in 43 other countries
  • Website: www.asbe.org

MEMBERSHIP

  • Membership categories: ASB offers four different membership levels, three of which – Professional, Young Professional and Student – are open to prospective members. The fourth, our Lifetime membership is a level current members may upgrade to, should they meet the necessary requirement. 
  • Member benefits: Education, networking opportunities, and professional development.
  • Cost and payment options: Pricing starts from $120 per year for the Young Professional Membership.
  • How to join: You can sign up online or download the paper application

OTHER PROGRAMS & USEFUL INFORMATION

  • BakingTech is the baking industry’s leading technology conference and exposition. ASB’s annual conference offers technical solutions, insight and experience. Over 1,000 baking professionals participate in a number of venues where knowledge and information is shared.

38. Foodservice Consultants Society International (FCSI):

Promoting professionalism in foodservice and hospitality consulting

The Foodservice Consultants Society International (FCSI) is the premier association promoting professionalism in foodservice and hospitality consulting.

The profession and association grew out of the widespread cultural and social changes in North America following the Second World War. Over time, resulting in a broadened influence and increased market share with new members in Europe, Asia, and across the globe.

FCSI has been transformed into a foodservice association that benefits from a global outreach and sharing of ideas, techniques, and approaches. Today, FCSI is the go-to source for the latest developments and trends in the foodservice industry.

OVERVIEW

  • Founded: 1955
  • Location: Springfield, with global presence.
  • Community: FCSI members offer a wide range of consulting services including concept development, feasibility studies, food safety, design, marketing, operations, and training. Membership requirements are stringent and FCSI members are recognized as industry experts.
  • Number of members: 1,300 members in over 46 other countries
  • Website: www.fsco.org

MEMBERSHIP

  • Membership categories: Student, Consultant, Corporate, and Affiliate. 
  • Member benefits: Education, resources centered around the industry, connections with various retail and institutional industry components, referral service, events, and much more  
  • Cost and payment options: Pricing starts from $25 per year for students. 
  • How to join: You can download the application form online.

OTHER PROGRAMS & USEFUL INFORMATION

  • The Worldwide content section on FCSI’s website covers industry trends and more.

39. The Institute of Food Technologists (IFT):

A scientific global community dedicated to the advancement of the science of food and food technology

Since its foundation, the Institute of Food Technologists (IFT) has been a forum for passionate science of food professionals and technologists to collaborate, learn, and contribute all with the goal of inspiring and transforming collective scientific knowledge into innovative solutions for the benefit of all people around the world.

As a scientific community grounded in purpose, IFT is contributing to a world where science and innovation are universally accepted as essential to a safe, nutritious, and sustainable food supply for everyone.

OVERVIEW

  • Founded: 1939
  • Location: Chicago, with a global presence.
  • Community: A community of global scientific scholars, innovators, visionaries, and achievers all passionately dedicated to the advancement of the science of food and food technology.
  • Number of members: 17,000
  • Website: www.ift.org

MEMBERSHIP

  • Membership categories: From Student to Premier membership. 
  • Member benefits: Resources and services necessary to enhance and advance their community’s work. Access to research, learning resources, networking opportunities, and events all created with the goal of helping you to become a stronger science of food professional and better positioned to be a vital contributor to the future of food. and more. 
  • Cost and payment options: Pricing starts from $99 per year (plus section dues) as a Networking & Engagement member. 
  • How to join: You can sign up online.

OTHER PROGRAMS & USEFUL INFORMATION

  • See news and publications on IFT’s website.

40. The Research Chefs Association (RCA):

The leading professional community for food research and development

Founded by a group of research chefs dedicated to overcoming challenges facing the food product development professional, the Research Chefs Association (RCA) has transformed into the premier source of culinary and technical information for the food industry.

RCA members are the pioneers of the fast-growing discipline of Culinology®, the blending of culinary arts and the science of food to elevate product development. The Research Chefs Association cultivates collaborations between the chefs and food science professionals who develop food to increase innovation, quality and speed-to-market.

OVERVIEW

  • Founded: 1996
  • Location: Headquarter in Chicago with presence across the U.S.
  • Community: A diverse mix including chefs, food scientists and other industry professionals who are shaping the future of food research and development.
  • Number of members: 2,000+
  • Website: www.culinology.org

MEMBERSHIP

  • Membership categories: Membership categories are designed to follow your professional culinary career. See detailed overview of categories on their website. 
  • Member benefits: From industry research, to trends, accreditation, international competitions, access to a Million-Member Intercontinental Society, and much more. 
  • Cost and payment options: Not specified. 
  • How to join: You can sign up online.

OTHER PROGRAMS & USEFUL INFORMATION

  • RCA Awards: Every year the Research Chefs Association pays tribute to the most accomplished, deserving professionals in the food product development industry.

41. The Society for Hospitality and Foodservice Management (SHFM):

Representing the most influential professionals in the industry

The Society for Hospitality and Foodservice Management (SHFM) serves the needs and interests of executives in the corporate foodservice and workplace hospitality industries.

SHFM members are influential industry professionals, representing all areas of corporate foodservice and workplace hospitality. From cafés and retail operations to catering, vending, fitness centers, child care services and conference planning and support, including audio/visual services. SHFM represents the people who directly provide these services and oversee purchasing decisions for hundreds of business campuses and millions of employees.

OVERVIEW

  • Founded: 1979
  • Location: Headquarter in Louisville, KY, with presence across the U.S.
  • Community: Client liaisons and self-operators, Major global, national and regional foodservice contract management companies and integrated facility management companies, Companies that provide products and services to our industry, Faculty and students from HRI programs across the United States.
  • Number of members: Not specified.
  • Website: www.shfm-online.org

MEMBERSHIP

  • Membership categories: From Student and Young Professionals, to Operator, and more. 
  • Member benefits:From conferences and scholarship programs, to industry insights, resources, and much more. 
  • Cost and payment options: Ranging from $75-590+ USD.
  • How to join: You can sign up online.

OTHER PROGRAMS & USEFUL INFORMATION

  • SHFM offers education ranging from overall business management to more specific areas.

42. Women Chefs & Restaurateurs (WCR):

Connects women across the Culinary Industry

The mission of Women Chefs & Restaurateurs WCR is to advance the voice of women across the culinary industry through education, connection, promotion, and inspiration.

WCR is an active resource for women seeking to advance culinary education and gain recognition in various areas of the food and beverage industry. WCR helps leverage the voice of talented women, helping to elevate their position while building a strong connection of industry partners. These connections have influenced the careers of many notable chefs today.

OVERVIEW

  • Founded: 1993
  • Location: Headquarters in New York, presence across the U.S.
  • Community: A diverse mix of culinary educators, chefs, restaurateurs, caterers, artisan farmers, charcutiérs, cheese makers, marketers, authors, publishers, bloggers and more.
  • Number of members: 2,000+
  • Website: www.womenchefs.org

MEMBERSHIP

  • Membership categories: Friend, Professional. 
  • Member benefits: From industry research, to mentorship, networking, education, and more. 
  • Cost and payment options: Ranging between $25-150 USD.
  • How to join: You can sign up online.

OTHER PROGRAMS & USEFUL INFORMATION

  • WCR Scholarship and Internships: The scholarship and internship opportunities are hosted by annual partners all over the world across all fields of the hospitality industry.

43. The United States Personal Chef Association (USPCA):

The largest professional association for personal chefs from North America

The United States Personal Chef Association (USPCA) is the leading organization for personal and private chefs, representing both chef companies and individual personal and private chefs.

Members represent almost every sector of the home dining field. USOCA supports the profession at every stage, by proactively communicating and emphasizing the value of the Personal Chef profession.

OVERVIEW

  • Founded: 1991
  • Location: Headquarter in New Jersey with presence across the U.S.
  • Community: USPCA is the essential organization for personal and private chefs, representing both chef companies and individual personal and private chefs. Members represent almost every sector of the home dining field.
  • Number of members: Not specified.
  • Website: www.uspca.com

MEMBERSHIP

  • Membership categories: From Student to Premier Membership. 
  • Member benefits: USPCA provides the resources you need to effectively and efficiently manage your growing business. From one-stop shopping for products and services to a network of sharing and caring members.
  • Cost and payment options: Ranging from $90-400 USD.
  • How to join: You can sign up online.

OTHER PROGRAMS & USEFUL INFORMATION

  • USPCA offers education to improve both your business and culinary skills. From business management to planning to culinary arts, the association serves as a one-stop destination for Personal Chef business education needs.

44. International Association for Food Protection (IAFP):

Protecting the global food supply, represented in 50+ countries

IAFP consists of more than 4,500 food safety professionals committed to Advancing Food Safety Worldwide® by providing food safety professionals with a community to exchange information on protecting the food supply.

IAFP members collaborate through networking, educational programs, events, career opportunities and numerous other resources, to realize the association’s mission.

OVERVIEW

  • Founded: 1911 
  • Location: Headquarters in Iowa, global presence.
  • Community: Food safety professionals committed to advancing food safety worldwide, currently represented in 50+ countries. Ranging from educators and government officials to microbiologists, food industry executives, quality control professionals and more.
  • Number of members: 4,500+
  • Website: www.foodprotection.org

MEMBERSHIP

  • Membership categories: There are several options – ranging from Student to Honorary Life. See more information under membership benefits details below. 
  • Member benefits: From discounts and education to online resources, events, workshops, industry reports and more.
  • Cost and payment options: Depends on membership type. Student pricing starts from $27.50 (annual fee + additional fees for extra services). See details under each membership type on IAFP’s website.
  • How to join: You can fill out the online application or print out the PDF application and either fax or mail it to Des Moines at the Iowa office.

OTHER PROGRAMS & USEFUL INFORMATION

  • See industry resources by IAFP on their website.