The founder of realEats.org, Joel Feigenheimer PhD., provides expert-witness testimony in the hospitality industry and maintains an online resource that helps restaurants find suppliers and vendors committed to providing healthy, sustainable products. Joel Feigenheimer concurrently teaches at the Florida International University (FIU) Chaplin School of Hospitality and Tourism Management. His 35 years of experience offer broad and deep insight into the hospitality industry from restaurants and hotels to event management and consulting.
His doctoral dissertation entitled “Perceptions and Purchase Intentions of Genetically Modified Foods by Commercial Food Buyers” is the only study of its kind to analyze the views of multi million dollar, commercial food buyers pertaining to genetically modified products. Genetically modified (GM) foods are a controversial topic which include undercurrents of science, health, ethics, economics and more. There are literally thousands of research papers on GM Foods and respondent’s individual perceptions of such products, however the buying power of this group of individuals is hard to harness and therefore offers minimal market impact as individual buyers. This research was unique in that respondents were required to be commercial food buyers. These “super buyers” were responsible for purchasing food volumes from $200 million to $9 billion in 2016. This paper provides insight into the education, perceptions, GM product knowledge and purchase intentions of impactful buyers.
Dr Feigenheimer’s vast knowledge of industry operations and his experience as a professor has enabled him to be an outstanding expert witness for the restaurant/hospitality field. His ability to take complex issues and deconstruct them into logical, bite sized blocks have allowed him to connect with both students and juries alike. Feigenheimer has provided testimony for dram shop, contract, employee and other restaurant and hospitality related issues. His history as an entrepreneur, professor and consultant combine to continually improve and update his knowledge and abilities as an expert restaurant/hospitality witness.