Tom Stenzel, president and CEO of the United Fresh Produce Association talks about changes in consumer behavior in the USA, the growing trend for fresh-cut and fresh fruit combined with proteins as a healthy diet in his interview with the Fruit World at Fruit Logistica 2018.
Tom Stenzel is President and CEO of the United Fresh Produce Association, a position he has held since 1993. United Fresh is the pre-eminent trade association for the produce industry in shaping legislative and regulatory policies; providing scientific and technical leadership in food safety and nutrition; and developing educational programs for its members. Founded in 1904, United Fresh represents the interests of companies from small family businesses to the largest international corporations throughout the global fresh produce supply chain.
United Fresh is widely known for its work in government affairs, agricultural policy, food safety and nutrition, working to promote political and environmental change to help the next generation of children double their consumption of fresh produce. The United Fresh Foundation addresses food safety challenges, nutrition and health, sustainability, and leadership development within the industry through a variety of educational programs. United Fresh is a founding partner of the Let’s Move Salad Bars to Schools campaign, in partnership with First Lady Michelle Obama’s Let’s Moveinitiative.
Tom is a frequent speaker on industry issues and has been recognized often by the produce industry throughout his career. He was honored as the 2002 Produce Man of the Year by The Packernewspaper, and currently serves as Chairman of the International Federation for Produce Standards, a global body representing national produce associations from the UK, Europe, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, Chile, Canada and the United States. He is also a member of the Key Industry Associations Committee of the American Society of Association Executives. He has served in many government and industry leadership positions, including the first U.S. Department of Agriculture Fruit and Vegetable Industry Advisory Committee, President George W. Bush’s Transition Advisory Team for Agriculture, and as an advisor on the U.S. Agricultural Policy Advisory Committee for Trade.
Registration has opened for United Fresh 2018 – an event where attendees will discover more come June 25-27, in the South Hall of McCormick Place in Chicago. This year, a 5th event – the SmartFood Expo – expands the show floor opportunities co-located with United FreshTEC Expo, United FreshMKT Expo, the Global Cold Chain Expo and the International Floriculture Expo.
Growing off last year’s success, United Fresh said that they expect to attract 10,000 attendees and more than 700 exhibitors, as they continue to innovate its education and expo offerings, while attracting more diverse buyers and media influencers to support the produce industry.
“We’re excited to welcome attendees and exhibitors to experience all five targeted expos & conferences this June in Chicago,” said United Fresh President & CEO Tom Stenzel. “Our expanded formats will allow industry decision-makers to discover a total store solution driven by consumers’ desire for more healthy and better-for-you food options as well the technologies and solutions that support a safe, efficient perishable supply chain. By bringing in these partners, we help the fresh produce industry grow in consumer and retail impact, direct sales and consumption, and of course, profitability.”
United Fresh attendees can experience a half-day industry leading education on Monday, June 25 where one badge allows access to all education taking place concurrently, including the United FreshMKT, United FreshTEC, Global Cold Chain, SmartFood and the International Floriculture education conferences. As part of the conference agenda, attendees also will interact with companies participating in the Snack Break, showcasing on trend products to meet today’s consumer lifestyles. Attendees also will get a glimpse at what’s next in the University Showcase where leading educational institutions are bringing new concepts and ideas to life. Finally, conclude the day by catching up with friends and peers during the official 2018 Opening Party kick-off event at Chicago’s Field Museum.
United Fresh will continue to offer two industry agenda setting and industry accolades events in the General Session Breakfasts held on Tuesday and Wednesday morning prior to each expo day. The Opening General Session Breakfast will focus on the industry headwinds that challenge us all, and how we can use them to propel our businesses forward. The follo wing day, salute the best-of-the-best at our Retail-Foodservice Breakfast honoring the top 25 produce managers on the front lines and chefs excelling in implementing fresh produce strategies in the kitchen.
Food safety remains a top priority on and off the trade show floor. This year, attendees can participate in the Listeria Learning Lab – a hands-on educational workshop connecting industry peers with the products and service that support their listeria efforts. The biggest “supermarket” buyer in town – School Foodservice Directors – will have a chance to dive into the challenges and opportunities they face on a daily basis to provide healthier and fresh options to students at the School Foodservice Forum. Attendees will discover new products available and clever marketing campaigns created by fresh produce brands to attract young eaters.
United FreshTEC and United FreshMKT will continue to address the innovative solutions in the industry in response to the challenges faced throughout the supply chain. United FreshTEC will showcase the latest developments in technology, robotics, and other supply chain solutions while United FreshMKT will highlight the marketing and product development trends that have consumers adding fresh fruit and vegetables to their carts in grocery stores across the country.
According to United Fresh, the new SmartFood Expo is the only B2B event focused entirely on better-for-you nutrition across all food and beverage categories. SmartFood product categories are expected to include allergy-free grocery products, gluten-free products, plant-based foods, specialty/gourmet products and more. With the addition of this event, fresh produce companies will find new collaborations and be exposed to more retail and foodservice buyers than before.
The SmartFood Expo will focus entirely on better-for-you nutrition
Global Cold Chain Expo, now in its third year, provides tech solutions to ensure quality control throughout the cold chain from field to table. Attendees will experience and find innovation throughout the full supply chain, ensuring improved cold chain services and food safety and quality maintenance and accountability.
International Floriculture Expo, the largest floral B2B trade show in North America, showcases anything a floral category buyer might need for their department, from cut flowers and potted plants to giftware and accessories. Attendees can learn about the latest industry topics, including merchandising trends, sustainability and eco-labeling, pricing analysis and cost-savings and more.
The All Access Package provides attendees and exhibitors with the ultimate show experience: networking opportunities and special events to interact with key customers, suppliers, and colleagues, as well as admittance to the United FreshMKT Expo, United FreshTEC Expo, SmartFood Expo, Global Cold Chain Expo, and International Floriculture Expo. This all-encompassing pass includes United Fresh’s traditional Opening Night Reception on Monday, as well as the Retail Foodservice Celebration Breakfast on Wednesday honoring outstanding retail produce managers and innovative chefs across the industry. Attendees also will enjoy a morning general session on Tuesday before the opening of the trade show, and the annual Reception Honoring Women in Produce, also on Tuesday.
Early bird rates for 2018 are available through May 15. United Fresh encourage to register for an All Access Package and gain unlimited exposure all five conferences & expos while also ensuring that you don’t miss any networking opportunities. Explore these details, register for the event, and more by visiting www.unitedfreshshow.org