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FEA merges committees as virtual events developed

The Foodservice Equipment Association (FEA) has just announced that it will be merging two of its key committees, the marketing committee and exhibition liaison committee.

The move was initiated by Malcolm Harling (pictured), who is stepping down as chair of the revenue and marketing committee.

Harling explained, “The overlapping responsibilities of the two committees meant that there was good reason to restructure in line with our strategic plan. A lot of the work in marketing was involved in our exhibitions, so it makes sense to combine the two and avoid duplication.

“On another point, I hope the merger will allow us to bring younger blood into the committee as we build for the future.”

John Whitehouse, chair of FEA, said, “Malcolm has certainly served his time – he first joined the marketing committee back in 2001. I’d like to say a personal thank you to him for his sterling work. The FEA’s profile has gone from strength to strength in recent years, in no small measure that’s been down to his leadership of, support of, and input into the marketing effort.”

While he is stepping down from chairing one committee, Harling, who is sales and marketing director of Williams, will continue to chair the FEA refrigeration product group forum and remains a member of FEA Council. Meanwhile Simon Lohse, who is managing director of Rational UK, will chair the new combined revenue and marketing and exhibition liaison committee.

The pandemic has seen a rise in the exploitation of digital technology, offering opportunities to develop virtual events to replace exhibitions and other activities. FEA has established a digital marketing expert group to support the committee’s objective to develop the events, training, exhibition and statistics elements of FEA’s service to the industry.

Currently it is is looking into organising a series of virtual events that will offer a forum where operators can meet suppliers to find out about the latest advances and advice in key areas of FEA work as well as current issues such as food waste and FOG (Fats Oil and Grease), connectivity and BREXIT.