Program 2019

7:45 AM - 8:45 AM

Registration & Refreshments

8:45 AM - 8:55 AM

Chair’s Opening Remarks

Sanjay Gummalla, Vice President, Scientific and Regulatory Affairs, American Frozen Food Institute (AFFI)

Introductory remarks by the Chair in the plenary room

8:55 AM - 9:30 AM - Keynote

Safety, Compliance and Risk Management

Effective Food Allergen Management Strategies

Michael Cramer, Sr. Director, Food Safety & Quality Assurance, Ajinomoto Foods North America, Inc.

  • Basics of Food Allergens
  • Allergen Ingredient Receiving, Identification and Storage
  • Allergen Ingredient Handling in Process
  • Label Verification and Application
  • Effective Sanitation and Monitoring

9:30 AM - 10:05 AM - Keynote

Food Security and the FBI

Robert Simmons, Supervisory Special Agent, FBI Chicago

Christopher Young, Intelligence Analyst, FBI Chicago

Your FBI is responsible for food security, not food safety. We investigate potential threats to the food sector and crimes or attacks against the food sector. But in order to protect your people, your products and your facilities, we need your help.

10:10 AM - 10:45 AM - Solution Spotlights

Safety, Compliance and Risk Management

Driving Food Safety Compliance with Key Performance Indicators

Robert Burgh, President, KLEANZ Food Safety and Sanitation Management

  • How KPIs bring accountability to Food Safety
  • Structuring Food Safety functions for optimum brand risk mitigation
  • Optimizing efficiency and labor hours by connecting them to Food Safety
  • Confirming audit readiness

Driving to Zero: An Executive Discussion on the Impact of Exceptional Manufacturing Performance

Jordan Workman, Director of Client Development, Performance Solutions by Milliken

  • Thinking differently about performance measurements and problem-solving with zero-loss thinking
  • Creating and sustaining a culture of engagement that impacts the customer
  • Defining the foundational components to manufacturing excellence for food manufacturers and distributors

10:45 AM - 11:45 AM

iSolve Meetings & Networking Refreshments

11:45 AM - 12:20 PM - Case Studies

Promoting Quality and Food Safety Culture within the Organization

Jeff Vaca, Head of Quality & Food Safety – Region Americas, Barilla America, Inc.

Put products at the center of the organization as everyone has the opportunity to participate in exciting product experiences to foster knowledge and product awareness.
    • Conducting product quality reviews – protect core products, benchmark and    create conversation around new opportunities
    • Providing educational sessions – spread among the organization knowledge about products through dedicated topics like ingredients, processing, packaging, quality and food safety
    • Teaching product development from the basics – build meaningful connections with employees and products through the fundamentals of assembly like meal creation in the kitchen, nutrition and culinary expertise

Safety, Compliance and Risk Management

Predicting the Future of Food Requires Us to Learn from the Past

Dr. Darin Detwiler, LP.D., M.A.Ed., Assistant Dean, Professor, Northeastern University

This session will look at the true burden of disease in order to examine how tools such as Blockchain align with
  • Food defence needs,
  • Food fraud concerns,
  • Supply chain risk assessment,
  • Compliance with food safety laws and regulations,
  • Workforce engagement, and
  • A culture of safety and quality

12:25 PM - 1:00 PM - Case Studies

Safety, Compliance and Risk Management

Consumers vs. Experts: Views on Food Safety Risks

Fabien Robert PhD, Director NQAC zone America, Nestle Quality Assurance Center

External environment is changing faster than ever. Not only the consumer trends but also the regulatory playground, the scientific knowledge, the general information level of people as well as the global food trade are also evolving very quickly.  This evolution offers a lot opportunities for improving food safety but also a lot of challenges for ensuring consumer protection.

Consumer perception regarding food safety is very different from the view of the scientific and technical experts. This is why communication and education around this topic from the different stakeholders including the media is essential to avoid misunderstanding and misconception. The communication part is an essential element to make sure that the food safety and food fraud risk can be contained to the minimum and to gain consumer trust with transparency and facts

While consumers are asking more and more for local food, organic label, authenticity and transparency the overall food trade worldwide is increasing. This obviously triggers some challenges for ensuring food safety both for private and public sectors. Food safety incident can happen anywhere in the supply chain under multiple forms. Understanding the risks and having a plan in place is critical for every food business in order to protect its consumers. This management includes among others understanding the risk factors by building awareness internally and externally, promoting best practices, development of prevention plan as well as robust analytical set-up to verify effectiveness of system and process established.      

Strategies in Foreign Material Control

Evan K. Lewis, Senior Food Safety Manager, Applegate

  • Technology for Foreign Material Control
  • Supplier Preventive Practices
  • In-Plant Preventive Controls
  • Employee Incentives for Foreign Material Control

1:00 PM - 2:00 PM

Networking Lunch

The Path to Supply Chain Risk Management

Roundtable led by:

2:00 PM - 2:35 PM - Solution Spotlights

Risk Assessing your Food Supply Chain

Chris Domenico, Territory Manager – North America, Safefood 360

  • Emerging best practice in assessing the risks present in your food supply chain
  • Methodologies for conducting risk assessments on supplier facilities and products
  • Special focus will be paid to the requirements of FSMA and will also focus on the criteria that should be applied when conducting these assessments

Learn more about the ComEd Energy Efficiency Program!

Tom Johanson, P.E., Senior Energy Efficiency Program Manager, ComEd Energy Efficiency Program

The ComEd Energy Efficiency Program provides instant discounts, rebates, home and facility assessments, technical services and whole-building solutions to help customers reduce energy use. Residential, commercial, industrial and public sector customers have saved more than $3.5 billion since the program’s inception in 2008. To learn how the ComEd Energy Efficiency Program can help you save money and energy, visit

2:40 PM - 3:15 PM - Case Studies

Safety, Compliance and Risk Management

Listeria monocytogenes in the Frozen Food Industry: Challenges and Opportunities

Sanjay Gummalla, Vice President, Scientific and Regulatory Affairs, American Frozen Food Institute (AFFI)

Frozen foods are at an important intersection in the industry’s evolution, especially from the perspective of enhancing food manufacturing practices and meeting consumers’ changing needs. From a food safety perspective however, frozen foods have in recent years been subject to frequent food recalls and even attributed with illnesses and outbreaks worldwide. These events highlight the public health risks posed by the presence of Listeria monocytogenes and other pathogens in frozen foods and have raised significant concern among food manufacturers, regulatory agencies, and consumers alike.

At the heart of this challenge is the trend towards more convenient foods and the perception that all frozen foods are innately ready-to-eat (RTE) food products. This presentation will outline AFFI’s holistic strategy and current efforts to combat food safety risks associated with frozen foods: through scientific research, enhancing best manufacturing practices, consumer labelling and education initiatives; and practical regulatory approaches.


How to Build a Culture of Food Safety in a Risk- Based Supply Chain Environment?

Dr Liliana Casal-Wardle, Senior Manager Food safety and Quality Latin America, The Hershey Company

The Food manufacturing industry has been enhancing programs and requirements for the Supply Chain, to guarantee that the products manufactured are safe for consumers. The regulatory environment has created stronger awareness through strict regulations: Food safety Modernization Act (FSMA) in the US, stricter regulations on the EU, Safe Food Australia among others. In this tough environment, a culture of behaviors with a risk management approach for Food safety, is the path that the industry is taking.

 This model consists of a comprehensive approach to manage direct risks within the process as well as the indirect risks due to inadequate cleaning & sanitation programs, traffic management, GMPs. Environmental Microbiological Monitoring has become a much more relevant tool to assess hidden risks in the facilities, with the mindset of Seek & Destroy.

Safe Food Manufacturing has evolved to manage hazards and/or eliminate them through a risk-based strategy.   The Global regulatory environment has developed new to a more holistic analysis of risks and how they are to be managed and / or eliminated.  In the US, the Food Safety Modernization Act opened the doors to a broader overview on how to guarantee consistent Food safety on every product manufactured. Compliance requires an in-depth analysis of direct food safety risks, such as kill step for microbiological hazards, allergen management for chemical hazards, and foreign material controls, for physical hazards. Indirect risks have also become very relevant such as adequate cleaning, sanitation programs, Environmental Microbiological Monitoring programs.

How to build a culture of Food Safety in a risk-based Supply Chain environment?  It is critical to enhance understanding of critical risks and provide the tools for the employees to own the responsibility of delivering safe foods for the consumers.

3:15 PM - 4:15 PM

iSolve Meetings & Networking Refreshments

4:15 PM - 4:50 PM - Solution Spotlights

Technology & IoT

Case Studies: Automating Supply Chains for FSMA and GFSI

Gary Nowacki, CEO, TraceGains, Inc

Technology transforms the way companies operate their business and accelerates development that creates massive efficiency gains. Hear how leading companies are using emerging technologies in radical ways.  

  • Learn how to update your quality management processes in ways that are economical and scalable
  • Gain insight on how to harmonize extreme growth, acquisitions, and SAP
  • Hear how to accelerate and harmonize PLM, Nutritional Labeling, and Supplier Data
  • Explore how to accelerate complaint resolution and reduce overall complaint numbers

Is Steam an Important Component of your Recipe?

Neil Davies, Market Development Manager, Spirax Sarco

In this presentation, specifically targeted at the Food and Beverage industry, the importance of Steam Quality is defined and explained. Contamination risks occur when steam comes into contact with food and drink products. Ensuring the correct quality and purity of steam is applied in these applications eliminates risk and supports Food and Beverage company corporate goals. Learning and detailing contamination risks through HACCP methodology provides opportunities for risk reduction and elimination.

4:55 PM - 5:40 PM - Panel Discussion

How to Engage Your Workforce and Align Their Practices with Your Food Safety & Quality Culture

Dr. Darin Detwiler, LP.D., M.A.Ed., Assistant Dean, Professor, Northeastern University

Fabien Robert PhD, Director NQAC zone America, Nestle Quality Assurance Center

Heidi Lammers, Senior Quality Leader, Land O’Lakes

Dr Liliana Casal-Wardle, Senior Manager Food safety and Quality Latin America, The Hershey Company

The safety and quality processes you implement will only work if the whole workforce is brought on board and engaged. As a highly human dependent industry, the single biggest cause of food safety issues is human error. It is critical that food companies train and engage their workforce effectively so that they appreciate the importance of procedures and understand the changes made.

  • Creating a coherent food safety and quality procedure
  • Best practice food safety and quality training techniques
  • How to keep your employees continuously engaged

5:45 PM - 6:45 PM

Evening Drinks Reception

8:00 AM - 8:55 AM

Registration & Refreshments

8:55 AM - 9:00 AM

Chair’s Opening Remarks

Sanjay Gummalla, Vice President, Scientific and Regulatory Affairs, American Frozen Food Institute (AFFI)

Introductory remarks by the Chair in the plenary room

9:00 AM - 9:35 AM - Keynote

Preparing for the FSMA Intentional Adulteration Rule

Steven Mavity, SVP – Technical Services & Corporate Quality, Bumble Bee Foods, LLC

With the compliance date for the FSMA Intentional Adulteration Rule just around the corner, it is important the food manufacturers have a plan in place to meet the requirements.  Learn about one company’s approach to the rule and important considerations as you contemplate your compliance journey.

• Summary of the requirements
• Getting started
• Developing and implementing the plan
• Where you can find help

9:35 AM - 10:10 AM - Keynote

Safety, Compliance and Risk Management

Food Safety and Inspection Service Protecting Public Health and Preventing Foodborne Illness

Lolita R. Brumfield, Compliance Investigator, USDA/FSIS/OIEA/CID

Krishna R. Cabine, Compliance Investigator, USDA/FSIS/OIEA/CID

  • Full session abstract TBC

10:15 AM - 10:50 AM - Case Studies

Safety, Compliance and Risk Management

Ensuring a Strong Food Safety Culture Every Day

Heidi Lammers, Senior Quality Leader, Land O’Lakes

  • Creating and measuring food safety culture through day to day execution of your Quality Management System 

Getting to Market: Strategies to Ensure Regulatory Compliance with Innovative New Product

Amy Sunderman, Vice President of Research & Development, Swanson Health

Swanson Health is a dietary supplement company with an award-winning product innovation program. In this session, Vice President of Research and Development, Amy Sunderman outlines core strategies their product innovation team deploys in developing cutting edge products that address category trends and specific consumer needs while accounting for the quality and regulatory requirements for the dietary supplement industry. Amy will present the research, regulatory and quality review, and product development process she and her team used to launch the Swanson Pure Science Herbals product line, as a case study.

10:50 AM - 11:50 AM

iSolve Meetings & Networking Refreshments

11:50 AM - 12:25 PM - Case Studies

Safety, Compliance and Risk Management

Food Safety Auditing - A Forensic Science?

Gordon Hayburn, VP Food Safety and Quality , Trophy Foods Inc.

Food Safety Auditing forms the basis of much of what we do in the food industry as part of managing food safety. It has been long established and its value is being questioned more frequently. As a tool, when done correctly it is invaluable in determining the level and types of controls that exist in a plant. There are however flaws in its use and it may be time to expect a more forensic approach to auditing. This presentation will highlight why this may be the case and give some examples of where the idea of forensic auditing would apply.

Process Validation: Can I Meet USDA and FDA Requirements?

Gary R. Acuff, Professor, Food Microbiology, Texas A&M University

What are the USDA and FDA requirements for process validation in HACCP and Food Safety Plans? Do you have what is required? We’ll discuss guidance from the two regulatory agencies, differences that exist, and how to make sure your process is validated. And we’ll talk about setting performance objectives designed to provide a roadmap to enhanced food safety.

12:30 PM - 1:05 PM - Keynote

Safe Food for Canadians Regulations – What Food Importers and Exporters Need to Know

Daniel Miller, Executive Director, Canadian Food Inspection Agency

An evolving global marketplace is increasing the speed, volume and complexity of food production, which has brought significant new risks and challenges for food regulators.

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency is responding to these challenges with the Safe Food for Canadians Regulations (SFCR). The regulations will provide clear and consistent rules for food commodities so consumers can be confident that food on grocery shelves is safer to eat, whether it is produced in Canada or abroad.

The Safe Food for Canadians Regulations was published in Canada Gazette, Part II, on June 13, 2018, and has come into force as of January 15, 2019.  These regulations enhance Canada’s focus on preventive measures and facilitate the removal of unsafe food from the marketplace. They will reduce unnecessary administrative burden on businesses by replacing 14 sets of regulations with one, and will help maintain and grow market access for Canada's Agri-Food and Agricultural sector.

Learn about these new Regulations, and what these mean for food importers and exporters involved in trade with Canada.  

1:05 PM - 2:05 PM

Networking Lunch

2:05 PM - 2:40 PM - Keynote

Hot or Cold: The Bioavailability and Manufacturing Challenges of Plant Based Beverages

Ellona Jarvis, Managing Partner, Napa Hills LLC

  • The industry is shifting: functional, plant-based, better-for-your beverages are replacing high calorie, non-functional soft drinks
  • Separating marketing spin from actual functionality is important to today’s consumers
  • There are very few original, innovative ideas in the beverage word.  My journey creating Napa Hills water - the world’s first ‘vineyard enriched’ water beverage infused with red wine’s antioxidants has taught me 7 shareable lessons
  • The abundance of sustainable sourced raw antioxidant materials from the wine making process may usher in a new category of many different vineyard enriched foods and beverage

2:40 PM - 3:15 PM - Keynote

Global Food Safety in a Franchised Environment – Risk Assessment of the Supply Chain

Obeta Osolu, Senior Director Global Quality Assurance, Domino's

In a complex global supply chain business spanning over 90 countries and close to 50 Master Franchisees consistent quality and food safety becomes a challenge within several regions. Executing a global policy that articulates a clear and consistent safety and quality standard within the company, stores around the world, franchisees and supplier partners becomes paramount.