Specialty Food Association Welcomes UNLV Harrah College of Hospitality Students as Winter Fancy Food Show Junior Trendspotters

UNLV Harrah College of Hospitality Graduate Students and Professors at the Specialty Food Association 2022 Winter Fancy Food Show

NEW YORK — The Specialty Food Association hosted 10 graduate students and two professors from the University of Nevada Las Vegas (UNLV), Harrah College of Hospitality during the 2022 Winter Fancy Food Show.  Running from February 6-8 at the Las Vegas Convention Center, the Show featured over 800 exhibitors and thousands of products from around the world.

“It was great to experience the exciting trends fueling innovation in food and beverage. The networking and engaging relationships between people, products, and business ideas is certainly inspiring to see first hand. With the University of Nevada Las Vegas (UNLV) Hospitality College involved, it is extra special since our students and faculty had the opportunity to connect with this specialty event that helps us develop new ideas along with innovative and cutting-edge research to inform our academics,” said Joseph Lema, Ph.D, Professor/Chair, Food & Beverage and Event Management. “The size, scale, and organization of this complex event was impressive in itself, and we appreciate the support of the Specialty Food Association in connecting us with this important aspect of elevating the food and beverage experience in Las Vegas that so many visitors and residents have come to expect. Las Vegas is a great place to have the Fancy Food Show!”

The Winter Fancy Food Show Junior Trendspotters identified the following top five trends:

  • Animal Protein Alternatives, jackfruit dumplings, and plant-based versions of cheese and yogurt
  • Focus on Allergens, edible cookie dough that meets top allergen needs, and a natural date spread for those with nut allergies
  • Single Serving Portions For Convenience, everything from individual fondue to granola bites, and pourover coffee
  • Sustainability and Environmental Awareness, including packaging materials, production methods, and actual products (edible cutlery)
  • Unexpected Flavors, ranging from gummies flavored with chile to oatmeal in toasted black sesame

The SFA 2022 Winter Fancy Food Show Junior Trendspotter Panel was composed of 10 UNLV William F. Harrah College of Hospitality grad students, under the guidance of Professor Lema, Seyhmus Baloglu, Ph.D. Professor/Chair, Margaret Hausbeck, Assistant Dean, and Dr. Cervantes Lee:

  •  Mallory Bali
  • Huying (Sophie) Zhang
  • Kyle Bledsoe
  • Yuang-Sheng (Ken) Chiu
  • Shaihong (Jade) Huang
  • Alaa (Michael) Huwaykim
  • Jihyun (Jennet) Kim
  • Yuanchi (Jerry) Li
  • Jehun (Hoon) Moon
  • Whitney Mulaj

A full Trendspotter Panel report from the Winter Fancy Food Show can be found online here.

The next Fancy Food Show will be held June 12-14 in New York at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center. Open only to the trade, the Summer Fancy Food Show requires registration and qualification. For additional information visit specialtyfood.com.

About the Specialty Food Association
The Specialty Food Association (SFA) has been the leading trade association and source of information about the $170.4 billion specialty food industry for 70 years. Founded in 1952 in New York City, the SFA represents manufacturers, importers, retailers, distributors, brokers,  and others in the trade. The SFA is known for its Fancy Food Shows; the sofi™ Awards, which have honored excellence in specialty food and beverage for 50 years; the Trendspotter Panel Show reports and annual predictions; the State of the Specialty Food Industry Report and Today’s Specialty Food Consumer research; the ecommerce enabled SFA Product Marketplace, where members showcase products and sell directly to qualified buyers; SFA Feed, the daily source for industry news, trends and new product information, and Spill & Dish: A Specialty Food Association Podcast.

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About UNLV Harrah School of Hospitality
The UNLV Harrah College of Hospitality is consistently ranked as one of the top hospitality programs in the world (#1 in the nation and #2 globally by QS Top Universities). Studying just blocks away from the epicenter of the hospitality industry — the Las Vegas Strip, Hospitality College students enjoy unparalleled access to hands-on, industry-relevant professional experience. Each year the college helps organize nearly hundreds of internships, welcomes more than 100 national hospitality brands to recruitment events, and pairs an average of 175 industry mentors with students. And with the completion of the college’s state-of-the-art academic building Hospitality Hall, students are ushering in a new era of excellence in hospitality education. Visit unlv.edu/hospitality to learn more.