The North American Association of Food Equipment Manufacturers’ board of directors has canceled The NAFEM Show 2021. The association described its decision as being “in response to rapidly changing circumstances caused by the pandemic.” The NAFEM Show was expected to draw thousands of foodservice professionals from across the U.S.
The NAFEM Show will return to its regular time slot in 2023. The event will take place, as scheduled, Feb. 1-3, in Orlando’s Orange County Convention Center. It will mark a four-year gap between NAFEM Shows, the first time that has happened in the association’s history. Until 2021, The NAFEM Show had taken place every other year since 1973, a run of 26 exhibitions.
“This is a disappointing decision but one that prioritizes the integrity of The NAFEM Show experience,” said Rob Connelly, CFSP, NAFEM President, Henny Penny Corporation in a release announcing the news.
The 2021 NAFEM Show was originally set to take place Feb. 1-3 in New Orleans. But, as the country tried to get its arms around this public health crisis, NAFEM proactively moved the show to Aug. 26-28 in Orlando, Fla.
NAFEM is not alone in cancelling its 2021 event. In February of this year, show organizers canceled the 2021 National Restaurant Association Show, which was to take place May 22-25 in Chicago’s McCormick Place. This was the second consecutive NRA Show to fall victim to COVID-19. In March of that year, show organizers pulled the plug on the 2020 NRA Show.