Food Safety Summit to Feature 70 Speakers and 2 Dozen New Sessions

FLORHAM, NJ - The 7th Annual Food Safety Summit and Expo next month will focus on the latest developments in protecting the nation's food supply from being compromised by any potential food safety or food security incidents, including everything from E-coli to Salmonella to intentional contamination by terrorists, according to the organizers here.

More than 1,800 food manufacturers, food processors, restaurant executives and food retailers are expected to attend the Summit on March 16-18, at the Washington DC Convention Center. The Conference program has been developed in conjunction with the Food Products Association (FPA), the National Restaurant Association (NRA), and other institutions.

"We have added many new and exciting elements to this year's Food Safety Summit including new sessions, new networking opportunities, new simulation exercises, new exhibitors and more," said Scott Goldman, president of Eaton Hall Exhibitions, producers of the event. "In addition, we will once again bring together top government officials and executives from food manufacturers, restaurant chains, foodservice establishments and the food industry to share ideas on how best to ensure a safe, secure and wholesome food supply."

Secretary of Agriculture Mike Johanns will keynote on Friday, March 18, followed by a "power panel" on the latest in US-Canadian agreements on cross- border beef shipments and BSE (Mad Cow disease). Leaders from both countries will discuss the state of beef imports in North America. Carlos Gutierrez, secretary of commerce and the former chairman of the board and chief executive officer of Kellogg Company; and Walt Freese, ceo of Ben & Jerry's, have also been invited to keynote.

More than two dozen new sessions have been added to this year's program, including FDA's updated Good Manufacturing Practices; New Tools for Testing; HACCP: In Your Hand; CSI: Your Food Plant, Biotech and Food Safety; Predictive Microbiology, Biosensors, Nanotech; and, the Future of Food Safety.

On Wednesday, March 16, the Food Products Association and Booz Allen Hamilton will present "Food Security & Bioterrorism: Tabletop Exercise and Simulation." At the workshop, front-line leaders in government, law enforcement, and corporate security will discuss protecting products, securing facilities, and watching suppliers and staff. Attendees will experience a "live-fire" drill where they will develop an actual response plan to a food security scenario.

The National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation (NRAEF) will sponsor the Restaurant and Foodservice Track. The track will provide cutting-edge, educational sessions to outline and address the positive and proactive efforts performed by the restaurant industry in maintaining food safety as a top priority.

Educational workshops in the restaurant and foodservice track include: Train the Trainer: The Skills You Need to Motivate Your Team for Safety; HACCP In Your Hand: Mobile Data Collection and Monitoring Using Handhelds and more; Regulatory Reality for Restaurants: An Up-Close Q&A With Washington's Top Food Regulators; and, Building Food Safety Into Food: Advancing Quality and Safety Through Biotechnology.

More than 70 speakers will discuss solutions for the industry with real world QA strategy for commercial companies during the three-day event. Executives from such household name food companies as Kraft, Tyson, McDonald's, Campbell's Soup, Pepsi-Cola, Kellogg Company, Gerber Foods, Sara Lee, ConAgra, Land O'Lakes, Dean Foods and Burger King will present several sessions. Attendees at the Food Safety Summit include executives in quality control, food safety, plant operations and sanitation as well as top leaders from the processing, restaurant and retail food industry, representatives from Capitol Hill, the White House and key regulatory officials.

In addition to the conference program, attendees will be able to visit the exhibit area where over 200 booths of several brand new technologies, including the new food security simulation exercise, will be on display.

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