Thank you for visiting the Rhode Island Food Dealers Association website. The Association was established in 1909 and today it continues to foster the same mission. The Rhode Island Food Dealers Association is committed to serving the food industry through education, member services and by providing a unified voice for the industry before state and national government, thereby benefiting the industry with knowledge, strength and fellowship.

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The RI Food Dealers is a proud member of the the RI Business RI Alliance for Business Resilience!

The Rhode Island Alliance for Business Resilience (the Alliance) is a self-governed public-private partnership focused on improving the resilience of Rhode Island businesses and local communities.

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Click here to see the latest FDA recalls and safety alerts!

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Retail Member of the Month

The odds of a new independent supermarket making it in a small New England town are long at best–especially when it sets up shop midway between a thriving Shaw’s and Super Stop & Shop. But then the oddsmakers didn’t figure on Jack Siravo. He’s taken Belmont Fruit, his family’s wholesale and produce business seasonal fruit stand, and turned it into Belmont Market, Wakefield, R.I.’s premier supermarket shopping experience.

Established in 1947 as a seasonal fruit and vegetable stand, Belmont was named by Siravo’s grandfather, “a great aficionado of the ponies,” after New York’s famed Belmont Park racetrack.

Belmont Market boasts the best bakery in town–not only because items like the scones are made in-store from scratch, but because it features products delivered from the best bakeries throughout Rhode Island. Siravo has had a relationship with many of the bakeries stretching back to the days when they supplied his fruit stand. There are breads from Buono’s, Daily Bread, Seven Stars Bakery, Olga’s, Palmieri’s, Provencal, and Allie’s Donuts.

Because Belmont runs its own wholesale produce operation and sources locally whenever possible, its product is often days fresher than that of its chain store counterparts. “We work with a lot of the local farmers and try to keep it as downhome-farmstandy as possible, but in very chic kind of surroundings,” Siravo says.

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Distributor/Supplier Member of the Month

Chex Finer Foods, Inc. is a third generation, family owned specialty and natural foods distributor built on a commitment to quality and service.

In 1965, Jay Isenberg, at the age when most men retire, had the vision and fortitude to start a specialty food company with the support and encouragement of his beloved wife Dorothy. They started out of a small garage in Sharon, Massachusetts. Along with their son David, they worked tirelessly to build an enduring family business committed to honesty, hard work, and an unending dedication to both valued customers and loyal employees.

Almost 50 years later, the business has grown immensely and continues to thrive. With the third generation of Isenbergs (Jeremy and Michael) now leading, Chex Finer Foods is the leading specialty and natural foods distributor in New England; committed to the needs of independent retailers in the Northeast. We take a partnership approach to our business, both with our vendors and customers. We are passionate about what we do and are dedicated to helping our customers grow and succeed through exceptional customer service, high-quality products, and customized sales programs.

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UPCOMING EVENTS

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SAVE THE DATE FOR THE 2019 RIFDA ANNUAL MEETING AND HOLIDAY GALA!

SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 23, 2019

AT THE NEWPORT MARRIOTT IN NEWPORT, RI!

Click here for the 2019 RIFDA Annual Meeting and Holiday Gala Registration Form!

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APPLY NOW FOR THE RIFDA SCHOLARSHIP PROGRAM!

All application materials are due to the RIFDA office by October 25, 2019 (email, fax, drop off or US Mail).  RIFDA is offering monetary one time non-renewable scholarships in the amount of $1,000.

Please Click Here For The Scholarship Application!

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PAST EVENTS

RI Business Leaders Day Presented by Senator Jack Reed and Hosted by RIFDA

September 18, 2019

Senate Hart Building, Constitution Avenue & 2nd Street, NE Washington, D.C., DC 20002

This event is presented by Senator Jack Reed. It is a substantive agenda from a roster of nationally-known speakers with knowledge of the federal policies and debates that support and affect Rhode Island Businesses.

The speakers discuss a broad range of subjects including the economy, commerce, the budget, housing, and national security, along with a host of other public policy issues. Top Cabinet officials, Senators, Congressmen and other government and media professionals offer their insights on these and other current affairs.  The event seeks to provide information on the important issues which impact the economies of both our State and Nation.

This day-long event also includes round trip airfare (or conference only option), ground transportation, catered food & beverage and a post conference reception all in the company of Senator Jack Reed and his staff.

This year the attendees heard from a variety of energetic and dynamic speakers, including: Professor Darrell M. West, U.S. Senator Mitt Romney, Margaret Brennan (Moderator of “Face the Nation”), Jelena McWilliams (Chairman of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation), Elaine Chao (Secretary of the U.S. Department of Transportation), U.S. Senator Maggie Hassan, U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown, Admiral Michael Mullen and U.S. Senator Lisa Murkowski.

 

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2019 Cliff Johnson-RIFDA Annual Golf Tournament 

Each year, RIFDA works very hard to upgrade and improve our annual tournament. The event format was well received by all; friendly registration, golfer welcome gift, the tournament golf award cash prizes, bigger and better door prize give-a-ways and a (50/50) raffle paying out over $600!
Kirkbrae Country Club is a perfect location for an all day event: BBQ lunch on the terrace, shot gun start including 3-$1,000 & 1-$10,000 hole in-one cash opportunities, cocktails, dinner, golf awards, prize presentations, and the 50/50 raffle drawing.

Thanks to our members for their outstanding support of the 2019 Cliff Johnson-RIFDA Golf Tournament, it truly was a success!

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2019 RIFDA Annual Convention

What more could you ask for? A picturesque setting at the Red Jacket Beach Resort in South Yarmouth, MA, a private beach,  great accommodations, The Bayberry Hills Golf Tournament, upbeat ambiance, welcome reception, excellent food, camaraderie, an open hospitality house, great laughs, Chairman’s Dinner with Exceptional Entertainment, beach front dinners, door prize give-a-ways and much more!

 

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2019 RIFDA Annual Trade Day

RIFDA hosted their Annual Trade Day on March 21st at Kirkbrae Country Club.  The RIFDA Trade Day featured the state’s Best Bagger Competition and new inductees into their Hall of Fame. The Best Bagger contest is an exciting event and determines the Rhode Island’s Best Bagger who is eligible to compete in the National Grocers Association’s “National Best Bagger Contest” held annually in San Diego.  This year’s event was coordinated and run with the efforts of Dave’s Marketplace and Shaw’s Supermarket.  The Best Bagger contest is always very competitive among the member participants especially this year with 18 contestants, as well as their co-workers who come to cheer them on. This year’s winner was Samantha Falkowski from the Dave’s Marketplace in Coventry.  She will represent Rhode Island in the national competition; Good Luck Samantha!

The evening featured an industry networking cocktail reception, followed by our annual RIFDA Industry Dinner. This year’s dinner program featured our guest speaker, Secretary of State, Nellie M. Gorbea.  The evening’s program concluded with the presentation of the 2019 RI Food Dealers Hall of Fame Inductees.  These included William Candon who was awarded the RIFDA Outstanding Service Award, Mesa Fresca who won the 2019 Spirit of RI Award, and Dino’s Park-n-Shop who was honored as the RI Food Dealers Member of the Year.  All three worthy recipients distinguished themselves by their outstanding performance, their overall success, and their outstanding contributions to the food industry in the state of RI.

The day’s events proved to be both informative and entertaining and the association was excited with the level of interest members displayed. This event serves the food industry of RI well and provides a unique opportunity to network, learn, and celebrate its members in an exciting format.

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RIFDA 2018 Annual Meeting and Holiday Gala  

Saturday, November 17, 2018

The 2018 Rhode Island Food Dealers Association Annual Meeting & Holiday Gala was held this year at the Newport Marriott in Newport, Rhode Island on November 17, 2018. The evening was very well received and very well attended. This event brings RIFDA members together in a festive holiday environment.  The location was wonderful, the food was great, and the grand raffle and door prizes continue to get bigger and better each year.  The music by Andre Arsenault was also very entertaining throughout the cocktail reception and the dinner.  The event was a true success thanks to the Rhode Island Food Dealers Association’s members.  Their support throughout the year is what makes these events happen.

The evening was inspired by a rustic fall theme. Corn stalks and bales of hay were adorned with lace, baby’s breath and sunflowers. The evening was energetic and the ambiance was full of cheer and smiles.  Fun and joy filled the cool November air.

The evening’s schedule started with a cocktail hour and entertainment at 5:30 PM, followed by the Annual Meeting at 7:00 PM. Steve Arthurs, President of RIFDA, gave an overview of the RIFDA’s activities and goals. At the end of the Annual Meeting, scholarship awards were distributed to the winning applicants. This year, RIFDA awarded five $1,000 scholarships to: Steven Amaral (Stop & Shop), Constantine Coclin (Coclin Associates), Samantha Falkowski (Dave’s Marketplace), Natalie Harris (Polar Beverages) and Matthew Skirzenski (Clements’ Marketplace).

This excitement was followed by the installation of the newly appointed Officers and Board of Directors. Brian Pacheco of Clements’ Marketplace fulfilled his term as acting Chairman and Scott Danis of Stop & Shop was inducted as the 2019 Chairman of the Board.  Following the induction, David Dulude of Imperial Distributors was recognized for his dedication and commitment over the past forty years in the industry and as a member of the Board of Directors of RIFDA.  He will be retiring at the end of the year. A surf and turf dinner was served at 7:30 PM. The Newport Marriott did an exceptional job with dinner. The room was full and the guests enjoyed a delectable dinner in an ambient setting.

Coming up next was the centerpiece drawing, door prize raffle, and then the grand prize raffle. The Grand Prize Raffle consisted of 5 packages full of marvelous prizes: a Weekend in Newport, a Weekend in Cape Cod, a Family Package, a Sports Package and a Golf Package…each package was valued around $1,000. There were 30 Door Prizes…and almost everyone won something! Many attendees turned the special occasion into a weekend getaway with hotel accommodations at a group rate.

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