TIA technical conference addresses industry growth

by Joanie Spencer
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At the opening session of the TIA technical conference, CEO Jim Kabbani identified factors that are contributing to tortilla sales growth and expressed the association’s commitment to help members meet increasing tortilla demand.

The tortilla industry is growing — in 2015, sales hit around $1.5 billion — but not for all the reasons you might expect. At the Tortilla Industry Association (TIA)’s technical conference, co-located at IBIE, the association is examining this growth and how to improve production and processes to meet growing demand.

According to Jim Kabbani, TIA CEO, tortilla growth is, of course, due to the continually increasing Hispanic population. But it’s about more than that, too. Non-Hispanic consumers are increasing demands, thanks to dietary and nutrition considerations that lend themselves to items such as wraps. And greater varieties of tortillas such as kosher, organic, gluten-free and new flavors are also driving sales.

In this changing and expanding market, TIA’s primary objective is to maximize success of its members. In Friday’s opening session, Mr. Kabbani expressed to attendees TIA’s commitment to the industry. “If you’re currently producing tortillas, we can help you achieve new levels of excellence, profitability and business connections,” he said. “If you’re new to the business, we can help you hit the ground running.”

IBIE attendees can still sign up for the second day of the TIA technical conference, which is taking place in room N250. In addition to this event, the TIA annual convention is scheduled for May 1-2 at the Paris Las Vegas resort. For more information, visit www.tortilla-info.com.
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