The North American Meat Processors Association (NAMP) reaches out to industry management with its 51st Annual Management Conference, to be held at Chicago’s Drake Hotel March 28-30.

The NAMP Conference is debuting several features as it begins another half-century. The most important feature is a focus on E. coli O157:H7 and ways to deal with the food industry’s biggest issue.

The conference will allow NAMP and industry members to hear the latest policies on E. coli from Dr. Dan Engeljohn of the U.S. Department of Agriculture and Dr. Bill Anderson, head of the Canadian Food Inspection Agency’s new E. coli Working Group. Participants also will learn what slaughterhouses are doing to combat E. coli and get practical advice on how to manage a recall from companies that have dealt with the issue themselves. The conference will also feature a round table of experts including Dr. Kerri Harris, Bob Hibbert and NAMP’s own team of Ann Wells, Dr. Jim Marsden, Dr. “Reddi” Thippareddi, and Robert de Valk.

E. coli may be one of the biggest issues the industry is dealing with today, but it’s not the only one. The Conference has other new features for attendees to cover other management areas.

Participants will be able to consult with NAMP’s new College of Experts. Private one-on-one appointments with College of Experts members will be available only to NAMP members. More information on the College is available on the members-only section of the NAMP Web site. Members of the College who will be at the conference include:

• Dr. Jim Marsden, NAMP Senior Science Advisor, Kansas State University

• Dr. “Reddi” Thippareddi, NAMP Science Advisor, University of Nebraska

• Dr. Kerri Harris, Associate Professor of Meat Science, Texas A&M University and president and CEO, International HACCP Alliance

• Bob Hibbert, Partner, Kilpatrick & Lockhart Preston Gates Ellis LLP

• Dr. Melvin Hunt, Professor of Meat Science, Kansas State University

• Dr. Chance Brooks, Assistant Professor of Meat Science, Texas Tech University

• Dr. Rich Mancini, Assistant Professor of Meat Science, University of Connecticut.

Former Notre Dame football hero Daniel “Rudy” Reuttiger will be the conference’s keynote speaker on March 28. Reuttiger became well-known after he sacked a quarterback in the last 27 seconds of the only game of his entire college-football career. He is the only player in the history of Notre Dame to be carried off the field by his teammates. The 1993 movie “Rudy” is based on his story. His keynote address is titled “Rudy’s Game Plan for Winning in Life — Turning Risk into Reward and Opportunity.”

Education sessions will take place all day March 28 and 29, beginning after Reuttiger’s keynote speech. Along with the focus on E. coli issues, attendees will receive education on topics such as employment law, HACCP and regulatory updates, packaging and product color, and sales and marketing.

Throughout the weekend, there will be opportunities for networking and relaxing. The traditional Beer & Pretzels Reception takes place on March 28, following the First-Timers Early Reception. Breakfasts on March 29 and 30 will also offer opportunities to meet others in the industry. Attendees will be able to see the latest offerings from NAMP members during the NAMP Showcase Reception on March 29, with the latest and best products of the group’s regularmembers.

For more information on the 51st Annual Management Conference, contact Sabrina Moore at (703) 758-1900 or