Convenience Store Food Service Consultant- Dean Dirks: News, Articles, Events

June 17, 2010

Speaking Schedule Update: 2010 Foodservice at Retail Exchange

My speaking schedule at the 2010 Foodservice at Retail Exchange will be as follows:

Tuesday, June 29, 2010
12:45 – 1:45 PM

Breakout 3

Opportunities in Today’s Economy
Speaker: Dean Dirks, Dirks & Associates

This breakout session focuses on the economic factors that affect the foodservice segment: unemployment, low customer counts, lack of disposable income, increased fuel prices, and fear of job losses. While the challenges may be overwhelming, they also create opportunities.

Analysis from convenience store, grocery, fast casual and fast food will be presented. Trends from all segments will be reviewed and analyzed. While each segment is different, common trends can help operators draw conclusions. These trends include home meal replacement, organic, obesity, green operations, labeling regulation, and healthy foods, to name a few. All segments are struggling with the same issues, but some are reacting differently. Some companies are pulling out of foodservice or scaling it down, others are getting more aggressive with discounting and promotions, and others are merchandising menus.

Expense categories and opportunities will be discussed, primarily labor and food costs. There are no magic bullets when it comes to expense management. Well-managed food service is operated on a few basic principles but the key is execution. This session will offer operators excellent ideas on how to increase revenues while lowering expenses.


June 2, 2010

2010 Foodservice At Retail Exchange (FARE) June 28-30 2010

I will be speaking at this event later this month:

2010 Foodservice At Retail Exchange (FARE)
Monday, June 28, 2010 – Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Intercontinental Chicago O’Hare
(847) 544-5300
5300 N. River Road
Rosemont, IL 60018
United States

Session: Title TBA – Tuesday, June 29, 2010; 12:45pm – 1:45pm

Visit for more information or Register here.

April 19, 2010

Convenience Store News – Foodservice Roundtable

Was a Guest Speaker at This Recent Event.

April 12-13, 2010
Dress: Business casual

Monday, April 12

3:00 – 6:00 p.m. All guests arrive in New York City
Check into Cooper Square Hotel
25 Cooper Square
New York City
Phone: 212-475-5700

7:00 p.m. Cocktails and Dinner
Table 8 (hotel restaurant)
25 Cooper Square

Tuesday, April 13

Roundtable location Nielsen/CSNews Headquarters
770 Broadway (entrance on 9th Street, between 4th Avenue and Broadway, short walk from Cooper Square Hotel)

8:30 a.m. Continental Breakfast

8:50 a.m. – 9:00 a.m. Welcome Remarks and Introductions
Michael Hatherill, Publisher, CSNews

9:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m. 2nd Annual CSNews Consumer Foodservice Study
Results of exclusive consumer study on how shoppers perceive and purchase foodservice from c-stores.
Don Longo, Editor-in-Chief, CSNews
Linda Lisanti, Senior Editor, CSNews

10:00 a.m. – 10:30 a.m. Coffee and Networking Break

10:30 a.m. – 11:15 a.m. Guest Speaker: Tim Powell, Director, Convenience Store Foodservice, Technomics

11:15 a.m. – Noon Group Discussion: Hot Dispensed Beverages
• What do you need to have a first-class hot beverage program?
• Benefits of house branded vs. generic coffee program
• Best practices in coffee: quality, water, hold times, controlling waste
• What does it take to have a successful specialty coffee program – flavored, cappuccino, espresso?
• How are other hot beverages performing – tea, hot chocolate, Chai, hot milk beverages? Any rising stars?
• Promotional strategies that work

Noon – 1:00 p.m. Catered Lunch

1:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m. Group Discussion: Prepared Foods
• Focus on fresh – full steam ahead or slowing down?
• High touch, some touch, no touch – which is the right tactic for you?
• What’s new with roller grills?
• Shifts in daypart traffic?
• Consistency, execution, quality control and food safety: what are the best practices?
• Best selling/fastest-growing food items
• New trends in flavor – ethnic foods growing?
• New or emerging foodservice technologies/equipment

2:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. Group Discussion: Cold & Frozen Dispensed Beverages
• What makes a first-class cold dispensed program – best practices in quality control, brixing, water, flavor offerings
• What’s selling best at the fountain?
• Relationship between packaged beverage sales and fountain volume
• Frozen beverages – coming back?

3:00 p.m. Wrap-Up & Departures
Transportation will be provided to the three local airports and Penn Station

October 12, 2009

Webinar: Trends in Eating and Drinking — High Touch, Some Touch or No Touch, Foodservice Is Key to Future of Convenience Retailing

Here is the link to the CSNews exclusive summary of the webinar I participated in “Trends in Eating and Drinking — High Touch, Some Touch or No Touch, Foodservice Is Key to Future of Convenience Retailing,” back in September.

December 10, 2008

The 2009 Convenience Store Decisions/National Convenience Store Advisory Group (NCSAG) Foodservice Conference & Exposition Feb. 23-25

Filed under: Events — Tags: , , , , , , — deandirks @ 3:55 am

Las Vegas, February 23-25

I will be speaking at this conference on the 24th of February, 2009.

9:30 a.m. to 10:30      Daypart Marketing: Breakfast


Coffee sales are hot, but McDonald’s Dunkin’ Donuts and Starbucks are convenience store customers with new products, competitive prices and an enhanced convenience offering. Retailers need to maintain control of this at this all-important daypart by committing to quality and value.


Presented by:

* Dean Dirks, President, Dirks Associates LLC

* Richard Pajak, Category Manager, Wilson Farms Neighborhood Food Stores

September 11, 2008

The Foodservice Distribution Conference & Expo October 12-14, 2008 Pittsburgh, PA

Filed under: Events — Tags: , , , , , — deandirks @ 7:43 pm

I will be speaking at this conference in October:

The Foodservice Distribution Conference & Expo October 12-14, 2008 Pittsburgh, PA
David L. Lawrence Convention Center / Pittsburgh, PA

October 12, 2008 9:30-10-30 am. – Session I will be speaking.
Session CS01 
Using Foodservice Programs to Build Profits in C-Stores
It’s not just cigarettes and snacks anymore: Today’s consumer demands drive many c-stores to invest in and grow the foodservice section of their businesses. Reports indicate that the most successful c-stores are dedicating a large percentage of their business to foodservice. By recognizing these opportunities, c-store distributors also stand to increase their profits. Attend this session and explore the opportunities available when investing in foodservice.

For more information or to register for this event:

July 28, 2008

FOODSERVICE AT RETAIL EXPO – August 11-13, 2008 Renaissance Hotel & Convention Center | Schaumburg, IL

Filed under: Events — Tags: , , — deandirks @ 5:39 pm

In August I’ll be speaking at this event.

Wednesday August 13, 2008
8:30 AM –9:30 AM   Diamond Sponsor Breakfast Forums (Choice of 3)
Topic: Due Diligence
Before any operator seriously considers entering or expanding into the profitable and at the same time risky realm of foodservice, he/she has much to consider. A thorough & objective analysis must be initiated to determine if the operator meets internal and external minimum requirements for success. The hard questions must be asked and this discussion will help lay your plan for being able to answer them..
Presented by: Dean Dirks, CEO of Dirks & Associates Consulting
Sponsored by: Piccadilly Circus Pizza
Location: Nirvana A

For more information visit:

June 19, 2008

Convenience Store Petroleum Food Service Conference, Chicago, Ill – August 11, 2008

Filed under: Events — Tags: , , , , , — deandirks @ 10:48 pm

I will be speaking at the Convenience Store Petroleum Food Service Conference in Chicago, Illinois – August 11, 2008
The topic I will be speaking on is FOOD SERVICE DUE DILIGENCE.

April 29, 2008

Pinnacle Summit 2008 – Grapevine, Texas

Filed under: Events — Tags: , — deandirks @ 5:44 am

This upcoming weekend I’ll be speaking at the 2008 Pinnacle Summit in Grapevine, Texas at the Hyatt Regency DFW Airport.

Saturday, May 3 – 10:15-11:15
THE PERFECT STORM AND HOW TO NAVIGATE IT: I’ll be discussing how to survive with skyrocketing food costs, rising labor costs, elastic pricing and static sales.

Pinnacle Summit 2008
Hyatt Regency DFW Airport
May 2-4, 2008
Event Information

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