27th Annual Chef Culinary Conference

Riding the Momentum of Change
University of Massachusetts, Amherst June 8-10, 2021 (Virtual Conference)

Free Registration

Riding the Momentum of Change

Dear All,

Spring is almost here! I hope you are all doing well and staying healthy during this time. What a difficult year it has been, but it seems there is light at the end of the tunnel.

During a recent survey, many of you provided feedback indicating that you would like us to conduct the 2021 Tastes of the World Chef Culinary Conference, albeit in virtual format. We intend to condense our usual week-long conference to a three-day period, June 8-10, 2021.

As always, the conference will include keynote speakers, panel discussions, information sessions and live virtual chef workshops with demonstrations. With the generous support from our sponsors, once again we plan to offer the sessions for free. Everyone is welcome to join us and expect over 1200 people will tune in.

While we cannot yet meet in person, we are committed to supporting the foodservice community through this time of transition.

Our 2021 theme is Riding the Momentum of Change.

There will be a focus on the areas of culinary strategy, innovation, planetary and human health, education and communication, all while serving our Gen Z customers. We have invited several nationally renowned speakers and chefs to join us and will hear from a number of universities about their shift in dining operations. We’ll look at what we might expect for Fall 2021 and a year from now.

Thank you for your continued support of the Tastes of the World Chef Culinary Conference. Let’s work together and support each other to get through this trying time.

We look forward to having you join us from a distance.




Ken ToongKen ToongKen Toong
Executive Director and Chair

"I’ve been fortunate to be apart of this conference for almost eight years. It only gets better each year. The caliber of Chefs and experts that Ken Toong assembles is unparalleled, the knowledge that attendees receive in the week at Umass can only be matched by traveling around the world. I’m looking forward to seeing new and familiar faces again this year."

− Jet Tila

"Taste of the World Chef Culinary Conference is a great conference. It is a wonderful opportunity to learn cuisine from chefs from all over the world. Ken and his culinary team do it right. This will be my seventh year and the conference continues to exceed expectations!"

− Greg Gefroh, University of North Dakota

"We look forward to the conference every year. From the culinary classes with world renown chefs, the culinary competition and the great hospitality of the UMass staff, I dare you to find a better conference that is reasonably priced"

− Craig Mombert, Davidson College

"The UMASS chef conference is the best conference that I have attended. I have been there the last 6 years and I have been lucky enough to have taken my daughter to the last few. She has gotten to meet chefs from all over the world and they have made a lasting impression on her and myself. I have learned more in the one week at his conference from the presenters and chefs from other schools. It is well worth the investment to send as many of your current chefs as you can. There are so many different hands on classes that you will want to have someone in each of them."

− Paul Nicolini, Penn State

"The Chefs’ Conference organized by UMass is the perfect venue for Chefs to get out of their comfort zones and really get back to the basics, great food! An outstanding event perfectly organized with great speaker and demonstrations. A must for all chefs."

− Oliver de Volpi I, McGill University