International Convention Centre Sydney(ICC Sydney) is driving economic development and delivering societal health and environmental benefits, according to a study from University of Technology Sydney (UTS) released at IMEX Frankfurt.
Launched in December 2016, Australia's premier convention, exhibition and entertainment precinct has already established a network of more than 60 local farmers, directly and via co-op and boutique providores – just one part of its unique Feeding Your Performance philosophy.
Through a new research partnership with UTS, ICC Sydney will measure the economic and social impacts of its New South Wales-focused food and beverage supply chain over time, and deliver annual updates.
UTS Business School Associate Professor, Carmel Foley, said ICC Sydney's Feeding Your Performance program is an industry-first approach that is already benefiting regional communities, delegates, its own people and the environment.
"Through its creation of a local supply chain, ICC Sydney is fostering significant employment opportunities and business growth across New South Wales. Its unique partnerships see the precinct working with suppliers from planting to plate, providing assured income and financial security. It is fantastic to see a major venue like ICC Sydney commit to supporting regional communities and their economic development."
Geoff Donaghy, CEO of ICC Sydney, said the research project has been designed to track key indicators for convention centre success, including CSR objectives, host city economic impact, the economic impact on farming communities and delegate experience.
"For the first time in our industry, we are measuring the full impact a venue can have on its supply chain. We'll be reporting on the success of our suppliers' businesses, as well as the communities in which they're located," he said.
"Our Feeding Your Performance philosophy creates a platform to showcase local suppliers to international audiences. It celebrates the hard work of our farmers and also highlights provenance through menus which offer nutritious dishes packed with the best produce from across the State.
"By raising awareness of the importance of fresh and healthy food for business, event and delegate success, we are not only improving the experience for our guests but seeking to drive behaviour change," said Donaghy.
New South Wales Minister for Industry, Niall Blair, said ICC Sydney's Feeding Your Performance philosophy has the potential to generate exciting tourism benefits for regional communities across the State.
"ICC Sydney is having success in winning the hearts and minds of event organisers and delegates through its mouth-watering menus. This is a great opportunity to showcase regional food bowls as pre and post touring destinations where delegates can experience rural Australia, taste fabulous food and wine, and enjoy the stunning landscape."
The ICC Sydney Feeding Your Performance Case Study is one of the first projects to be submitted to the Joint Meetings Industry Council (JMIC) Case Study Program, which is aimed at measuring the legacy impacts of the business events sector.