Blog: just-food - At the Summit
Ben Cooper | 2 October 2012
The Sustainability Summit, jointly convened by the Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA) and the retailer association, the Food Marketing Institute (FMI), gets underway in Washington DC tomorrow (3 Oct), and just-food will be attending all three days.
Apart from what promises to be a stimulating conference, it is of course an extremely interesting time to be in Washington, as election fever mounts before next month's Presidential Election.
As well as being an extremely good opportunity to evaluate the progress the US food sector is making on sustainability, it will also be very interesting to hear what industry professionals around the conference are saying about the election.
The US food sector has had something of an up and down relationship with President Obama, notably on the diet and health issue. He made the fight against childhood obesity a key priority and children's TV advertising was firmly in the sights of Obama appointees at key government agencies. Aggressive lobbying and significant adjustment in self-regulatory measures has put paid to the imposition of official government guidelines which was at one stage feared.
On the other hand, the First Lady's Let's Move campaign has actively welcomed corporate involvement and the industry has taken up that opportunity enthusiastically.
The relationship with legislators regarding environmental issues will of course be much discussed at the conference, which is billed as "the premier sustainability event for the food and consumer products industry, bringing together retailers, manufacturers, government and advocacy groups to learn together, network and seek common solutions".
So what will the event cover? The organisers say the conference, which has "Uncovering the Possibilities" as its overall theme, has been designed to "help companies with all levels of awareness, expertise and experience incorporate sustainability into every aspect of their business model". It will take in topics such as emerging trends, consumer and employee engagement, technology and innovation and supply chain management.
The conference kicks off tomorrow with expert panel discussions on sustainable agriculture and sourcing high-impact products such as palm oil, cocoa, coffee, soy and beef.
Another critical aspect of the conference is that it is being jointly hosted by the GMA and FMI so in itself represents retailers and food manufacturers coming together to tackle pressing sustainability issues and reduce impacts.
Nestle, set to welcome a new CEO on 1 January, has announced more changes to the make-up of its senior management team....
Blue Bell Creameries is trying to win back the trust of consumers after a fatal listeriosis outbreak last year was linked to its products - but in recent days the US ice cream maker has issued another...
The UK's competition regulator has given the all-clear to Hain Celestial's bid to buy UK food and beverage group Orchard House Foods, nine months after the US group announced the deal....
- Interview: Mondelez's outlook for China
- Interview: Mondelez eyes sweet success in China
- General Mills on Q1, innovation, margins
- What next for Bernard Matthews? - comment
- How food companies involve staff in sustainability
- Ireland unveils national plan to tackle obesity
- ConAgra acquires Frontera Foods' "gourmet" brands
- Aryzta FY profits fall
- Nestle close to finalising Garoto deal
- Nestle launches Nesquik Protein Plus for adults
- The Big 15: Strategies and Priorities of Top Packaged Food Players in Comparison
- Global Chocolate Confectionery Overview: Challenges, Opportunities and Risks
- Global Foodservice Market 2016-2020
- Constellation Brands, Inc. (STZ) - Financial and Strategic SWOT Analysis Review
- Global Food and Drinks Closures: Performance and Opportunities