press release -
International Housewares Association

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Contact: Deborah A.Teschke
Senior Manager, Public Relations & Communications
Email Debbie Teschke
847-692-0110


IHA COUNCIL EXTENDS SUPPORT FOR INDEPENDENT RETAILERS


ROSEMONT, ILL (April 29, 2009) — The Gourmet Trade Development Council, an advisory group to the International Housewares Association (IHA) made up of industry suppliers who are IHA members, affirmed its mission to offer support to independent retailers at its meeting just before the International Home + Housewares Show last month. As a step in that process, the Council announced that it will author a series of Best Practices Reports detailing processes and activities that have been shown to be the most effective in relationships between buyers, sellers and sales representatives. The Council is currently recruiting sales representatives who are active in gourmet trade and will share the results with the industry. The documents will be available later this year.

The Gourmet Trade Development Council was established in 2008 after several IHA members and concerned industry participants suggested that more resources were needed to support participants in the gourmet category. The Council sponsors IHA’s Specialty University held the day before the International Home + Housewares Show, free consulting to independent retailers offered during the Show and IHA’s partnership in an annual retailer education conference. The Council is instrumental in bringing gourmet industry issues to the attention of IHA’s Board of Directors.

“IHA and the Council are dedicated to providing support for this very important segment of the housewares industry,” said Robert Laub of Harold Imports who chairs the Council. “These Best Practices documents will go a long way toward developing more effective working relationships between retailers and reps and between reps and suppliers.”

A list of Gourmet Retailer Development Council members is available on IHA’s website at http://www.housewares.org/iha/about/committees.aspx#development.