William Caruso FFCSI reflects on how the pandemic changed his own life and the wider foodservice sector as he looks ahead to brighter times
It’s hard to believe that a year has passed since the advent of the Covid-19 pandemic. I’m sure that you are all like me: willing on the vaccines to help rescue the world from this awful problem.
For me, it’s been quite a change from living on airplanes weekly, to attending Zoom meetings while sitting in my home office. I know all of you share my feelings on this. Now that the virus seems to be ramping up again everywhere, we are all asking ourselves: “When will we be able to get some sense of normalcy back into our lives?” I, for one, am an optimist who feels better times are not far away, and that we will beat this thing soon. I say to all of you: just hang on a while longer. We’ll get there.
In talking to our Worldwide board of directors over the last year we all feel this. We have all seen the resiliency of our membership during tough times. Members helping others survive in various countries around the world where famine has emerged – when children and the elderly have needed help – and the result has been that lives have been positively impacted by their kindness and generosity.
Camaraderie and social interaction
This is who we are. A proud worldwide family of caring and understanding professional colleagues helping each other and helping others in their communities who are in need. In recent surveys that have been undertaken among both Professional members and Allied, one key feature has stood out and that is our members want, more than anything else, the opportunity to meet face-to-face once again; to share the camaraderie and social interaction that we all are known for and enjoy. We continue to plan for this and although these plans have had to be adjusted in an ongoing way, they will happen. I am confident of that.
Our EAME Division plans for an April Conference in the suburbs of Paris have been postponed until June. Our TAD conference in conjunction with the NAFEM show in Orlando, Florida, is planned for August and, god willing, it will go ahead and be a resounding success. Last, but not least, the APD Division continues to plan for a number of shows and exhibits in various parts of their territory. We continue to look forward to these occurring. Let’s keep pushing forward and never lose hope that better times are coming, because they are just around the corner.
Finally, let’s applaud who we are and what we have all accomplished as part of the greatest industry going, as worldwide friends and colleagues and members of one of the finest professional organizations on this planet: FCSI. Through our combined efforts we are united in the belief that through supporting one another, we will advance the goals and objectives of who we are as individuals and professionals.
William Caruso FFCSI