A World of Possibilities

The latest supplies, equipment, and ingredients for the food industry can be found at the upcoming Worldwide Food Expo.
This fall, Chicago’s McCormick Place convention center will be filled with machinery, supplies, ingredients, and several thousand food industry professionals. The International Meat, Poultry, & Seafood Convention and Exhibition will be held from October 26 to 29, as part of the Worldwide Food Expo.
The Worldwide Food Expo is a biennial, global food and beverage technology event, combining both the Meat, Seafood & Poultry Convention and the Food, Dairy and Beverage Exposition, and it will cover a wide range of food categories, including meat, prepared meals, poultry, seafood, frozen foods, and snacks. More than 1,200 exhibitors will be showcasing their equipment, supplies and services within 1.2 million square feet of exhibit space.
The Worldwide Food Expo is sponsored by the American Meat Institute (AMI), the International Association of Food Industry Suppliers (IAFIS), and the International Dairy Foods Association (IDFA).
Food industry professionals choose the Worldwide Food Expo to find the latest solutions in the manufacturing process, from receiving and blending, to processing and packaging, to material handling and distribution. Executives, plant managers, operations managers, and many more come to the Worldwide Food Expo to find equipment, ingredients, and services to help their companies run more efficiently, offer new products, and improve profitability.
The show floor will be featuring special exhibits on sanitation, food safety, and packaging. Product development and refrigeration and freezing will have separate pavilions devoted to them. A new material handling and distribution pavilion will feature robotics, trucks, containers, and conveyor systems.
Educational opportunities
Meat Tech, part of the AMI Expo, will feature 12 presentations from show exhibitors about a range of new technologies.  Meat Tech is designed to provide exhibiting companies and their customers with a unique opportunity to showcase new technological developments.
The sessions will be offered from October 26 through 28, from 8:30 to 9:45 a.m. Presentations will be grouped by key categories: validation, recent analytical methods of pathogens, and application of sanitary design principles for meat and poultry processing equipment and facilities. This year’s presentations include a variety of topics, including Listeria control, cleaning exhaust emissions, and expansion and renovation of meat plants.
The 12 presenting companies are: Herdon & Redmond Engineer/Architects, Hixson Architecture & Engineering, Kemin Food Ingredients, Mepaco, Munters Corp., Praxair Inc., Purac America, Quickdraft, Smiths Heimann, Synergetics Installations Worldwide, Unitherm Food Systems, and Vineberg Communications.
The Meat Tech sessions are just a part of the educational opportunities available at the AMI Expo. The Expo features more than 45 educational workshops, featuring more than 75 hours of specially designed programs for plant managers, engineers, chief executive officers, and quality assurance/control managers.
“Manufacturing Solutions” is a special track of sessions focusing on what matters most on the production side of the food industry. The sessions are designed to help food and beverage plants implement leaner, more efficient, and more profitable processing and manufacturing operations. Additionally, credit for Continuing Education Units, Professional Development Hours, and Learning Units is available from the IAFIS for these sessions. Manufacturing Solutions courses include “Improved Plant Efficiencies Through Smart Engineering,” “Innovation in Product Development,” Implementing Lean Manufacturing at Plant Level,” and “Plant Maintenance Short Course.”
New to this year’s show are six Super Sessions, led by top management, food research, and business trend experts. They will be addressing critical topics, such as:
• Leadership in Turbulent Times: Unlocking Potential: Robert Cooper, author of Good to Great are the Enemies of Possible and The Other 90%, explores how exceptional leaders and teams can liberate untapped potential and excel under pressure.
• Connecting Brands to Evolving Customers: Kevin Lane Keller, professor at Dartmouth’s Tuck School of Business and author of Best Practice Cases in Branding, explores keeping a brand relationship alive and fresh while still leveraging brand equity.
• The Antidote for Anti-Corporate Activism: Consultant James Lukaszewski shares insight gained from coaching organizations on tough and touchy corporate communication issues to help attendees gain a better understanding of anti-cororate activism trends.
• Business Ethics in a Changing World: Marianne Jennings, professor of legal and ethical studies at Arizona State University, looks at business ethics and provides clear tips on how corporations can establish values up front and create an ethical climate within an organization.
• Forecasting the Impact of Macro Trends and Demographics: Author, forecaster, and design strategist Andrew Zolli helps multinational corporations see, understand, and respond to emerging change by connecting trends in demographics, technology, geopolitics, and business.
• Micro Trends Matter: Understanding Retail Food and Consumer Trends: Tom Rubel, president and chief executive officer of Retail Forward Inc., will identify the next major trends in the way consumers live, shop, and eat, as well as the opportunities and challenges that retailers and food manufacturers will face.
Timely conference topics
The Meat Industry Research Conference (MIRC) held in conjunction with the AMI Meat, Poultry, & Seafood Expo, takes place October 25 and 26, and will focus on allergens, food defense, and culinary arts. MIRC is co-sponsored by the AMI and the American Meat Science Association. A welcome reception is scheduled for October 25, sponsored by the Solae Company, a leader in the research and application of soy protein.
The conference, free to registered AMI Expo attendees, is targeted at those responsible for food safety, product development, regulatory compliance, and research and development. Food industry executives and experts will lead the education sessions on allergens, natural and organic opportunities, the affects of animal diet on meat consumption, and processing characteristics of pork, culinary arts, food defense, and other hot topics. MIRC is now fully integrated into the AMI education program. After the conference concludes at noon on October 26, attendees can head for the exhibit floor.
AMI awards
The AMI is also offering opportunities to network with other professionals in the meat and poultry industries on Friday, October 28, with two ticketed events, the Washington Insider Breakfast in the morning and the AMI Chairman’s Gala in the evening. The Insider Breakfast will bring industry professionals together to learn about what is going on in Washington and how it will affect their businesses. Along with recognizing industry PAC contributors, the breakfast will feature a to-be-announced political figure as a guest speaker. Guests will be able to interact with elected officials, while the officials will hear about the issues impacting the industry.
The AMI Chairman’s Gala reception and dinner will be held at the Chicago Hilton and Towers and will feature a “Roaring ‘20s” theme, complete with a speakeasy and jazz music. The association will also present its four annual awards:
• The Edward C. Jones Community Service Award, for a company that has shown a strong commitment to the communities in which it operates;
• The Supplier of the Year Award, for a supplier that has shown a spirit of partnership and made an outstanding contribution to the success of the meat and poultry industry;
• The Industry Achievement Award, for an individual, group, or company whose work has contributed to the success of the meat and poultry industry;
• The Scientific Achievement Award, for an individual within the industry, academia, or government whose professional achievements have had a significant contribution to the scientific knowledge of the meat and poultry industry. NP
For information about the International Meat, Poultry & Seafood Convention and Exhibition and the Worldwide Food Expo 2005, contact the Convention Management Group at (703) 934-4700, fax (703) 934-4899, or visit www.worldwidefood.com