St. Louis, MO - While Innovations 2019 wrapped up only two months ago, plans are already underway for the 2020 show.

Dot Foods Trade Show Manager Christine Iovaldi said Innovations is scheduled to take place April 15-17, 2020, in St. Louis, Missouri.

The invite-only trade show will be open for one day only. But in the past, Innovations attendees received the VIP treatment on the days leading up to the event with seminars, networking opportunities, and a private concert. Past headliners included Goo Goo Dolls, Little Big Town, Darius Rucker, and Earth Wind & Fire.  

Dot has hosted a food show for its customers and manufacturer partners since 1997. Each year the show brings together and inspires distributors, national account operators, and manufacturers and brands from around the world.

"Dot does such a great job showcasing new ideas (and helps) connect those dots from ideation to what this actual physical product looks like-and then connecting a face to that is even more powerful," said Nels Storm, senior director - culinary at AMC Theatres. "This isn't stuff that was relevant 10 years ago; this is stuff that is going to be relevant 10 years going forward."

Iovaldi said that most of the Innovations 2020 itinerary won't be released until later this year, but since it will be Dot Foods' 60th anniversary, everyone can expect to see some big surprises throughout the event.

"We take the survey feedback we receive from attendees every year very seriously, and we are always looking for ways to surprise and delight our Innovations attendees," Iovaldi said. "We can't wait for our 2020 show and are looking forward to expanding our educational opportunities for attendees."

One aspect of the show that attendees can still anticipate: Dot Foods CEO Joe Tracy's keynote, The Industry Update. Since 2013, the Industry Update has been one of the most popular aspects of the show. In previous years, Tracy shared his foodservice industry research and opinions on the topic; he then gave the crowd an inside look at Dot.  

"If we aren't doing business to put you in a position to win, then our business isn't sustainable," Tracy said in his 2019 keynote. "That's why we are focused on adding to our natural and specialty offering and adding to that as fast as we can."

Dot has added 53 natural and specialty brands since 2017, many of which show-goers saw on the show floor soon after the Industry Update commenced.

Iovaldi said eligible Dot Foods manufacturers can sign up to exhibit starting in October, and she encourages customers to save the date now for the 2020 show.

"There are countless opportunities to have big conversations with people," Storm said. "It is absolutely worth the trip."

Stay tuned for more information about the Innovations schedule and lineup as it's released. But in the meantime, check out our 2019 recap video to share in the excitement.