Sunday, October 2, 2022 MST
AFFI Board of Directors Fall Meeting
Monday, October 3, 2022 MST
Profiles in Frozen Food Leadership
The J.M. Smucker Co., a family business founded on fruit spreads, is now a multicategory consumer food powerhouse with leadership in frozen, coffee, snacks, pet food and pantry items. Led by the high-growth Uncrustables brand sandwiches, Smucker continues to invest in the brand and its capacity to grow. After opening a new 430,000 square foot manufacturing facility in Colorado in 2018, the company recently announced the construction of a new facility in Alabama to come online in 2025. Leading all this ambitious growth is Tina Floyd, Senior Vice President and General Manager, Consumer Foods, at The J.M. Smucker Co. Tina will join us to talk about the company’s view of the frozen category, her approach to leadership, and the steps the company has taken to build this large and fast-growing business over the last 25 years.
360 Degrees of Frozen Innovation
AFFI and FMI – The Food Industry Association created the Frozen Food Forum in 2021 as a way to bring frozen food manufacturers and retailers together to discuss opportunities to grow the category. During this session, participants will leave with an understanding of the top-ten areas within the frozen food category that are growth areas and examples of recent frozen food innovations from the U.S. and overseas. During the panel discussion, manufacturers and retailers will also discuss the recent dynamic of private label growth in the category, its impact on future category sales, and how we can develop new frozen food products and sell them in a way that creates innovation in the aisle but doesn’t cannibalize our existing portfolio of products. Attendees will leave this session with some insight on a process moving forward that will be successful for both the retailer and manufacturer when it comes to innovation in the aisle.
Unlocking Opportunities in E-Commerce
In collaboration with our E-Commerce Working Group, AFFI has been working to investigate opportunities and vulnerabilities for frozen food e-commerce. Now, with a common base of knowledge and opportunities identified for precompetitive collaboration – be that in click and collect programs working with retailers or exploring direct to consumer options – the industry can move forward on frozen food e-commerce, and be successful for both the retailer and manufacturer when it comes to innovation in the aisle. During this session, attendees will have an understanding of the frozen food online shopper, trends, an immediate solution to optimize frozen online and a future-looking opportunity.
The Here and Now
Working Lunch: The State of Our National Politics
A.B. Stoddard will offer a non-partisan perspective of the political landscape of the day and our nation’s upcoming elections. Frequently meeting with sources and politicians of all stripes, Stoddard has her finger on the pulse of Washington, DC, as she offers detailed and smart political and electoral analysis. In a talk as up-to-date as the headlines, she covers the five biggest stories in the news, the most up-to-date happenings between Congress and the White House, ongoing budget battles, and the electoral prospects for the two parties.
Driving Growth in Foodservice
This session will uncover the results of AFFI’s second edition of Power of Frozen in Foodservice, in partnership with Technomic, to provide: an understanding of foodservice operator attitudes and practices regarding selection and usage of frozen foods and beverages in the foodservice industry overall as well as within key segments of the marketplace; preferences for frozen foods and competitive formats (ambient/shelf-stable and fresh/perishable) within various applications and product categories; assessment of macro trends on frozen food acceptance among operators, including labor shortages, supply chain, smaller restaurant/unit footprints, more off-premise business, technology, etc.; and an outlook for the frozen food category in foodservice and drivers/inhibitors to growth
The Keys to a Food Safety Culture
“You’re responsible, and you’re accountable.” That’s how Kerry Bridges, Vice President of Food Safety at Chipotle Mexican Grill, sums up food safety culture. In 2019, Bridges joined Chipotle to lead a team of individuals who are committed to enforcing Chipotle’s zero-tolerance policy and industry-leading processes, focusing on supply chain, in-restaurant practices, food prep and employee hygiene and training. Food safety is more than a collection of programs and processes for Bridges; it’s part of Chipotle’s culture.
Bridges will be joined by Cargill’s Global Vice President of Food Safety, Quality and Regulatory Affairs, Sean Leighton, to lend his broad responsibility perspective on the need to have process control and traceability of raw materials and end products. Furthermore, Leighton will bring together what current supply chain challenges mean for your business risks and what he sees as critical when it comes to food safety culture. Together, Bridges and Leighton will explore the essentials of cultivating a culture of food safety, especially in a world that is constantly evolving new innovations and yet is challenged with persistent supply chain and economic disruptions.
Frozen’s Role in Building a Healthier Future
The COVID-19 pandemic highlighted the overall cost of obesity in terms of healthcare and loss of life. The resurgence of the health and wellness agenda is here as the Biden Administration, the FDA and the USDA are under pressure from non-governmental organizations and influential members of Congress to move forward with new rules, regulations and guidelines impacting salt and sugar, front-of-pack nutrition labeling, ultra-processed foods, as well as radical changes to the Dietary Guidelines for Americans. This session will explore this current dynamic and frozen’s role in a future of food that seeks to end hunger, improve nutrition and physical activity, reduce diet-related disease, and close the disparities around them.
Tuesday, October 4, 2022 MST
A Focus on AFFI’s Sustainability Initiatives
Sustainability is a priority for the frozen food industry and a core strategic pillar of focus for AFFI. Given the industry’s reliance on energy, AFFI is creating a framework that brings members together to better understand their carbon footprint and how to decarbonize by reducing the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions generated through energy use and other activities. Recognizing that companies are at different stages of their sustainability journey, this session will provide an overview of what decarbonization means for frozen foods and highlight how companies are setting goals and taking action.