Please join me in congratulating the deserving companies recognized through the results of FE&S' 2011Best in Class study. Click below to see which companies our subscribing operators, dealers and consultants selected as the best of the best.

After pouring over the results of the 48 foodservice equipment and supplies categories the study evaluates, what strikes me most is just how competitive so many of these categories remain year after year.

But this study represents a great way to measure your experience with specific brands against those of your peers. That's because our Best in Class study evaluates the factory performance across seven areas that impact the purchasing process, as defined by you, our readers. Sure, we could base the awards on market share or total number of units sold but that's not what we want to accomplish here.

Rather, the goal of FE&S' Best in Class study is to make sure that we convey the collective voice of all our readers to the manufacturing community through the cumulative results this study generates.

A special thank you goes out to the operators, dealers and consultants who participated in this year's study. We understand that participating in such a comprehensive study requires an investment of your time and expertise, both of which are very valuable. If you see ways we can improve the study, do not hesitate to reach out to me or Joe Carbonara, our editor.

If you were unable to participate in this year's study, we hope that you do so next year. The more foodservice professionals that participate in this study the stronger the voice presented back to the factory community.

Speaking of hearing your voice, many of you have told us how much you appreciate the convenience of receiving the digital edition of FE&S each month. For some of you the electronic version has replaced the printed form altogether. For others the digital edition offers a convenient supplement to the print version as dictated by time and circumstance. In an attempt to further evolve along with you and technology, October marks the introduction of FE&S' iPad app.

Available through iTunes, the free FE&S app allows you to download our monthly issues to your iPad, enabling you to view issues of the magazine where you want and when you want.

Our goal is to continue to make the contents of FE&S relevant and then to make it available to decision makers in their desired format, be that in print, online or both.

If you have access to an iPad, check it out...we think you're gonna love it!