By Bill Guyton, Executive Director of FCIA
Since its inception in 2007, FCIA has grown to over 350 members. This year alone, 34 new companies and individuals have joined our association to support the fine chocolate movement in the United Sates and abroad. Our growing membership base enables us to leverage and negotiate various group rates for shipping, conferences, retail outlets and international tours.
Shipping Discounts: FCIA members who attended the Elevate Chocolate Event in New York on June 22, 2019 may have noticed promotional materials from PerhiShip which, through negotiations, is offering significant discounts to FCIA members. PeriShip reports that since the end of June, several companies have already taken advantage of this benefit. Within the short time period, these discounts more than offset FCIA membership dues for associate and small businesses.
Festival and Trade Show Discounts: FCIA has developed "Affiliate Organization Partnerships" with trade associations, research institutes and trade festival organizers. Through these agreements, affiliate partners offer discounts to FCIA members who attend or exhibit at their events. We reciprocate by offering space at our Elevate Chocolate Gallery Showcase.
One of our most recent Affiliate Partnerships is with the Salon du Chocolate in New York on November 15-17, 2019. Earlier this year, the show organizers offered FCIA members a 20% discount on exhibit space and no corner charge. By mentioning "FCIA newsletter," FCIA members can still receive a 15% discount over the next few days. We are seeking similar arrangements with other conference organizers.
Retail Store and Cocoa Tour Discounts: A third category of benefits involves retail store and cocoa tour discounts. FCIA member company KahKow is offering members a 10% discount at their store in Brooklyn though the end of this year. FCIA companies and partners operating in Latin America are also providing discounts to members for tours of cocoa producing regions in different countries.
Seeking Your Suggestions: FCIA's membership committee is exploring other opportunities to provide value and benefits to our members. If you have suggestions of other ways FCIA can leverage our network of companies, please let us know.
For additional information on discounts, contact Bill Guyton or Jennifer Wicks.