Seatrade Cruise News is part of the Informa Markets Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them. Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

In Focus: F&B@Sea

Big name cruise lines to feature in F&B@Sea keynote panel

Melanie Hansche will lead the panel comprising Wes Cort and Cornelius Gallagher (left) and Richard Morse and Jacques van Staden (right). (Photo of Jacques van Staden: Getty Images for MSC Cruises)
Representing the four major cruise groups, executives from the food and beverage sector will headline the State of the Cruise F&B Industry Keynote at F&B@Sea in Fort Lauderdale later this month.

The panel, which kicks off the inaugural edition of F&B@Sea, will delve into industry trends, initiatives and solutions.

Featured panelists include Richard Morse, SVP food & beverage, Carnival Cruise Line; Cornelius Gallagher Jr., VP food & beverage operations, Celebrity Cruises; Wes Cort, VP food & beverage operations, Norwegian Cruise Line; and Jacques Van Staden, SVP food & beverage, MSC Cruises.


The two-day experience catering to the cruise food and beverage community will take place March 28-29 at Port Everglades’ Terminal 2, running in tandem with Seatrade Cruise Global, March 27-30 at the nearby Greater Fort Lauderdale Broward County Convention Center.

Labour, regulations and supply chain

The State of the Cruise F&B Industry Keynote, 12:30 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. March 28, forms the event’s opening session and brings together industry leaders to discuss some of the pain points revolving around labour, regulations and supply chain. Moderated by Food & Wine Deputy Editor Melanie Hansche, the conversation taps those at the helm of cruising's largest F&B programs to gain insight into overcoming challenges and continuing to excel in the years to come. Sustainable sourcing and operations will also be addressed.

‘Incredible lineup’

‘It’s an exciting honor to bring forth our first-ever State of the Cruise F&B Industry Keynote to our cruise community and our many shipboard and shoreside partners in the food and beverage space,’ remarked Chiara Giorgi, global brand and event director for Seatrade Cruise.

‘We’re proud to welcome an incredible lineup of renowned experts to the Seatrade stage to shine a spotlight on this multibillion-dollar sector which is an essential pillar of the cruise experience,’ she added.

Among demonstrations and interactive content by top chefs and mixologists, panels include discussions on emerging beverage trends and the rise of chef-driven dining concepts at sea.

Chef-driven F&B programs at sea

This panel will look at the challenges of transitioning well-regarded, chef-driven F&B concepts to sea which can provide marketing benefits and drive bookings. Offering lessons from experts in the field, the panel will comprise Rob Floyd, celebrity mixologist & liquid chef, cocktail ambassador at Rob Floyd Entertainment, Princess Cruises; Sami Kohen, VP, food & beverage, Princess Cruises; Rudi Sodamin, head of culinary art & master chef, chairman and founder of the Culinary Council at Princess Cruises, Holland America Line.

Beverage Trends

From topics like low ABV to zero-alcohol cocktails, to nutrient-rich beverages and drinks with herbs and spices, this session offers insights from leaders in the beverage industry, dissecting the trends expected to take off in the coming years.

Featured panellists include Luis Ortega, director, beverage development & operations, Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings and Zachary Sulkes, senior director, beverage operations, Carnival Cruise Line.