Dear Fellow IFMA Members:

I have had the remarkable honor to serve as IFMA’s board chair for two years. And what years they have been! Navigating a post-pandemic business landscape turned out to be an ideal time for IFMA to reevaluate our mission and goals. We began to review our purpose and relevance in 2022, and last month we announced our results.


IFMA has a new long-range plan – Level Up 2027. Early work to achieve the plan includes revisions to our vision, mission, and purpose statements to ensure that we provide leadership to the expanded ecosystem of our industry. Next year, the evolution of IFMA will become even more apparent as we expand our membership roster and build additional cross-industry initiatives.

If you haven’t reviewed Level Up 2027, I encourage you to take a few minutes and read it.

Review the Level Up 2027 plan now >>

2023 also saw us add 47 new member companies! We’re grateful to know that our membership is valued, and we intend to continue to enhance our benefits to serve businesses of varying sizes and needs across all of food-away-from-home.

In other achievements:


  • Education & Webinars – IFMA hosted 29 webinars this year with a combined 6,300+ registrants. We continue to offer our popular Foodservice Fundamentals course both digitally and in-person and have customized the in-person course for teams at several companies.


  • The Foodservice Leadership Councils – The five councils are made up of more than 150 operators. They represent the major segments of foodservice: Elementary & Secondary Schools, College & University, Business & Industry, Healthcare, and Restaurants. FLCs provided integral thought leadership throughout the year, including to our long-range plan and IFMA’s annual forecast. They also spent the year creating useful and substantive guidebooks that provide best practices for working with their segments. The guidebooks are being offered to IFMA members as benefits of membership. Learn more about the guidebooks >>


We are heading into 2024 with an optimism and energy that you will experience through your IFMA membership. This organization has big plans, and we are honored that you are with us as we move to implement a new membership structure, new branding, and enhancements to our benefits and services.

I am very pleased to be passing the torch of Board Chair to Custom Culinary President, Ben Wexler next month. Ben has provided invaluable service in building out the new direction for IFMA and I will be honored to support his leadership as we move to implement those efforts.

Thank you for your continuing membership and for the opportunity to serve.

Happy Holidays to all! I wish you a wonderful and prosperous New Year!


Herb Ring 

Chair, IFMA Board of Directors

National Foodservice Director, The Hershey Company