MenuDirections is the only culinary-focused and networking event for all noncommercial foodservice segments. Leaders focused on the noncommercial segment lead an agenda designed around the food & culinary, tech & innovation and data & analysis.

MenuDirections conference is organized by Winsight, a leading B2B information services company focused on the food and beverage industry, providing insight and market intelligence to business leaders in every channel consumers buy food and beverage – convenience stores, grocery retailing, restaurants and noncommercial foodservice – through media, events, data products, advisory services, and trade shows.

The Harvest Table Culinary Group had members from across our portfolio attend to stay current on industry trends. Here are some of the things we learned about:


From Noma to K-12: How a High-end Chef is Tackling Noncommercial Foodservice

Peter Romeo, Editor-at-Large, Winsight Media
Dan Giusti, Founder, Brigade

Brigaid founder, and former Head Chef of Noma in Copenhagen (perennially named the best restaurant in the world), Dan Giusti discusses his transition from the restaurant world to K-12 school foodservice.


Annual State of the Foodservice Industry

Joe Pawlak, Managing Principal, Technomic

Technomic’s Joe Pawlak lays out the economic drivers, consumer demands and legislative landmines impacting the noncommercial segments today.

Potatoes: Your Plant-Forward Performance Food

RJ Harvey RDN, CEC, Global Marketing Manager, Foodservice, Potatoes USA

How many ingredients are an indigenous part of almost every global cuisine? Now how many of those are plant-based? Gluten-free? A strong source of potassium, fiber, complex carbohydrates and other nutrients that are essential for both athletes and everyday performers alike? Potatoes check every box. This session will focus on innovative uses for potatoes to build healthier and more globally inspired menus across all dining needs and dayparts. We will showcase several innovative techniques and share tastings of these delicious dishes, taking inspiration from Latin America, the Middle East, Asia and India. Prepare to have your eyes opened to the amazing possibilities with potatoes that go far beyond baked, mashed and fried.

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Potato Tostone with Guacamole & Coja

Potato Tostone with Guacamole & Coja

Building a Plant-Forward Menu with Lentils

Amber Johnson, Manager of Market Promotion,
Marie Molde, RD, Account Manager, Registered Dietitian, Datassential
Chef James Bickmore-Hutt, Corporate Chef,

Consumers are continuing to move toward plant-forward eating. This session explores the latest trends driving the plant-forward movement impacting your operation. From shifting consumer eating patterns, next-gen health and wellness notions, and emerging flavors and inspirations from around the world - we’ll review the important role lentils play in satisfying your customer’s interest in plant-forward menu items. Join this exciting session to identify how to offer and execute your plant-forward strategy harnessing the craveability and plant-power of lentils. Through the eyes of consumer data and a culinary demonstration, we will explore flavor-building strategies and on-trend applications of lentils in plant-animal blends and power bowls.

Sustainability: Meeting the Needs of Today's Diners and Protecting the Diners of the Future

Ferd Hoefner, Senior Strategic Advisor | Speaker, National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition

Sustainability is the responsibility of all members of the food community, from farmers and laborers to foodservice operators and consumers. How does noncommercial foodservice fit in? What is its unique responsibility and contribution to the growth of the sustainable agriculture community?


Sustainability in Action

Pat Cobe, Senior Editor | Moderator, Restaurant Business Magazine and FoodService Director Magazine
Keith Soster, Director of Sustainability, University of Michigan
Steve Solomon, Foodservice Channel Director, Mushroom Council
Abigail Darwin, Senior Health Promotion Student, University of Georgia College of Public Health

Best-in-class noncommercial operators discuss how they further a sustainable mission in their operations, including strategies, return-on-investment, and innovative, outside-the-box practices.