The Institute of Food Technologists (IFT) announced that it will transition the IFT20 Annual Event and Food Expo, slated for July 12-15 at McCormick Place in Chicago, to a virtual event experience. The move comes in an effort to prioritize the health and safety of participants and the broader community throughout current and anticipated developments of the COVID-19 pandemic.
IFT’s board of directors decided to transition the onsite annual meeting and food expo into a virtual experience.
“After thoughtful consultation with leaders and partners within the food industry and academia, IFT’s board of directors decided to transition IFT’s onsite Annual Event and Food Expo into a virtual event experience. We believe this to be the best and safest course of action in light of the evolving COVID-19 pandemic developments,” said IFT president Pam Coleman.
The board made this decision now to transition to a virtual platform and to allow attendees, exhibitors, and stakeholders the time needed to make necessary travel and planning adjustments, IFT said.
This new virtual direction provides the community an even more inclusive opportunity to support IFT’s overarching purpose of gathering the global science of food and food innovation community together to share, learn, connect, and inspire the future of food.
IFT staff are currently working through details to support this transition and we will be sharing updates via this website and IFT’s social media sites.
The IFT Annual Event and Food Expo, which has taken place for 79 years and attracts upwards of 20,000 global attendees, highlights the latest trends, solutions, and insights shaping the food ecosystem.
“It would be a disservice to the members of our community and the broader food ecosystem if we were to cancel IFT’s annual event in its entirety. We chose to transition to a virtual event to provide a safe and inclusive platform for the global science of food community to convene, share, and learn—a purpose that is more important than ever before. We are excited about the new opportunities this presents and look forward to providing informative virtual programming,” said IFT CEO Christie Tarantino-Dean.
More details regarding the virtual format will be shared in the coming weeks through a variety of communications and on iftevent.org. Frequently asked questions regarding this transition are also provided at ift.org/ift20faq.