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WFC Announces RFP for Super Regionals

The World Food Championships announced plans to partner with cities, destinations or tourism organizations to host Super Regional qualifying events throughout the United States.

Now in its third year, the World Food Championships is the world's largest culinary competition, featuring special food challenges, surprise ingredients and a multi-category tournament structure that whittles 500 competitors down to a Final Table face-off between nine category champions. The championship, which has occurred in Las Vegas the past two years, is the culmination of a year-long, world-wide search for the best team, cook or chef in the world of competition food. At stake are hundreds of thousands of dollars and TV fame through a reality show on the FYI network.

Competitors come from all walks of life, as evidenced by the two past champions Robert Butler, a professional chef from Las Vegas, and Dave Elliott, a marketing manager from Olathe, Kan. Butler won in 2012 with his "Bahn Mi in France" sandwich, while Elliott surprised the field with his "Mom's Carrot Cake," a family-treasured home recipe. Each winner bested more than 250 other culinary champions as they earned their way to the Final Table and ultimately the title "World Food Champion.

"Culinary competitions are one of the fastest growing event ideas in America," said Mike McCloud, President and co-founder of the World Food Championships. "Not only do people love food, but they want to be engaged and educated in the world of food sport. That, plus the fact that our competition has leveled the playing field for amateurs and professionals alike, is why the World Food Championships has become the hottest property in food entertainment."

Also garnering attention is the economic impact of the World Food Championships. In 2013 alone, the WFC had a $15 million economic and publicity impact on the city of Las Vegas. The 2013 event will be aired this summer in a special six-episode series on A&E Networks' new lifestyle network FYI. Along with potential TV exposure, the super regional qualifiers will feature a mobile competition kitchen that is powered by Kenmore, WFC's official appliance partner.

"As more visibility has begun to shine on the World Food Championships our event has grown exponentially," said Larry Oliphant, Vice President and co-founder of the World Food Championships. "Introducing Super Regionals in 2014 will help us funnel the growth of the event into other exciting destinations that are known and respected for their culinary heritage."

To learn about the RFP process for a Super Regional event, including proposal requirements and guidelines, contact the World Food Championships at Proposals for potential host cities or destinations will be accepted through March 31, 2014.

2013 World Food Championships Multi-Channel Media Impressions and Executive Summary (PDF)


Below is a link to the RFP response document that details the WFC Super Regional events, and the process for submitting questions, intent to respond and your actual response. When your response is received, the primary contact will receive notification of receipt. To maximize efforts in a timely and efficient manner, follow-up interviews/teleconferences may occur after receipt of RFP response and in advance of the final submission date.

Please note, you have until March 3 to submit a Notification of Intent to Respond. Responses to the RFP document will be accepted in digital or print format through March 31.



What is a Super Regional Event?

For the first time ever the World Food Championships is offering an opportunity for cities, events and/or venues to host a Super Regional Qualifying event. By partnering with national brands like Kenmore and Tyson Foods, the World Food Championships is able to create a mobile kitchen unit that can be set up at nearly any venue for the creation of a high-stakes food competition unlike anything else. Four to six cities, events and/or venues will have the opportunity to host a Super Regional in 2014. Due to the nature of the food competition, and our expertise of running and managing food competitions, the Super Regional events are scalable in size. The number of competitors, judges, celebrities and fans will vary in size based upon the size and scope of the events that are created. More rounds and competition means more competitors, which means more judges. The specific event size and scope will be discussed with all serious respondents during the teleconference round, immediately following the response submission period.

Super Regionals can scale from 10 to 50 competitors at its base size, with the ability to grow even larger with the addition of extra categories. The competition will take place in the Kenmore kitchen arena where multiple competitors will cook through multiple rounds to find the best of the best from each city's event.

Super Regionals can also be used to supplement an existing festival (food related or not) and bring more entertainment and excitement to a previously existing event. Additionally, Super Regionals and affiliation with the World Food Championships, will boost the culinary prestige of the host venues. Many cities are great "food towns" across the country, very few have an opportunity to showcase themselves on this stage and at this level.

Currently, the World Food Championships is in the process of negotiation for an extension of our television series. Once those deals are finalized, and the Regional Events are in place, the overall vision is to use some of these Regional Qualifiers as opening episodes for the television series. This information is simply to provide general vision, no extensions of the television series have been finalized at this point. The initial launch of the show's first season (filmed in 2013) is scheduled to air this summer (July).

More information about the FYI Network and the World Food Championships show:

Here is our recent segment on ABC Nightline:

1. How big a space is required to host a super-regional?

As outlined in the RFP document, the World Food Championships events are scalable. The size and the scope of the event will be determined by the host location, certain categories and competition add-ons require more space than others. Potential respondents are welcome to submit multiple location options in their response that represent the size and scale of the event they would like to have. As a minimum requirement we estimate 5000 square feet of available space. Seven of our nine competition categories will fit in this space. If a host would like to add Barbecue (as an example) to their event, as it is not considered one of the three core categories, additional space will be required.

2. What are the typical hotel needs for your event?

As the Super Regional events are scalable, hotel numbers will vary based on the number of categories, and additional factors that change the size of the event. After the preliminary round of responses are received, we will hold a teleconference round for serious respondents. Our intent is to specifically discuss the scale of the proposed event and further define the hotel needs based on those individual conversations.

The World Food Championships, this past November in Las Vegas, fulfilled then superseded our initial room block commitment of 1500 room nights with our four hotel partners and eventually finished at almost 2000 total room nights. This only accounts for rooms within our designated block (and subsequent room block extension) and does not take into consideration anyone reserving outside of our block and for the last month leading up to the event. During the World Food Championships, every major casino/hotel in Downtown Las Vegas sold out including Golden Nugget, The D, The Plaza, Binion's, Four Queens, Downtown Grand and the El Cortez.

3. How many days are required to host a Super Regional?

The size and scope of the event will be determined by the host location and will vary. Our recommendation is a 2 to 3 day event which would include a day of registration, plus competition and awards. If potential hosts would like additional categories, the time length of the event would scale to meet that requirement.

4. How many categories are Super Regional events?

The size and scope of the event will be determined by the host location. The minimum required of competitions for a stand alone Super Regional event is three, of which one will include Bacon. Events can be scaled to accommodate for more categories, additional demonstration events and grazing events.

5. Are there any exclusions to the local partners/sponsors we acquire?

To help the venue host ensure a successful event and offset their internal costs, the World Food Championships allows local venues to acquire local partners and sponsors for the Super Regional events. The only exclusions WFC has, will be any partnership that is a direct, in category, conflict with one of our National Partners at the Super Regional events. Local venues are encouraged to seek and secure numerous local partners who will benefit from the WFC marketing platform. Currently the World Food Championships will be partnering with Kenmore and Tyson Foods (Wright Brand Bacon) to produce these qualifying events. All non-conflicts are welcome and any partnership discussion will be welcome.