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President’s Message

October/November 2021

“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times ….”

                                                            ~ Charles Dickens

Dickens could not have said it better….. with all that has transpired with the pandemic since our last show, his quote seems to reflect what the country and our industry has gone through since PROCESS EXPO 19 was last held. We are hopeful that the worst of times are behind us and optimistic that even better times for our industry lie ahead. With that said, we are excited about PROCESS EXPO 21 and are eagerly counting down (only 31 days) to the opening of our show. We are in for a great show that I am sure will please attendees and exhibitors alike. Following are a multitude of excellent activities that will provide added “buzz” on the show floor:

Full Production Lines: One of the most exciting and popular activities that attendees enjoyed at our last show were our “live” production lines. Once again, show attendees will be able to witness full production line demonstrations with real product. At this year’s show, attendees will be able to see demonstrations which will run three times a day from our bakery, meat, and prepared food segments hosted once again by our outstanding emcees – something that attendees will not want to miss.

Innovations Showcase: This is not just another poster board session, rather attendees will see presentations from the finalists from each industry category, showing the latest cutting-edge technology and equipment and weigh in with their vote for the “People's Choice Award” for top innovation of 2021.  If you like “Shark Tank” you will find the showcase is something you won’t want to miss.

Women's Alliance Network Breakfast & Honors: The Women's Alliance Networking Breakfast will be held on Thursday, November 4th and is open to all individuals in the food and beverage industry. The Breakfast will feature keynote speaker, Christie Lagally, founder and CEO of Rebellyous Foods who will address modernizing technology for plant based proteins and other challenges in launching her business in this innovative segment of the industry. Another great component of the breakfast will be the inclusion of the Network’s Red Circle Honors which recognizes the achievements of three women in the food and beverage industry and an FPSA member company who actively supports and develops the careers of women in its company. It’s not too late to register for this free breakfast if you haven’t already done so.

Show Education Program: This year’s PROCESS EXPO University program  promises to be very popular and more importantly, a major reason for your customers to come to the show. Plant-base proteins, cell-based meats, the future of food, food safety and sanitation, trends in food and beverage, robotics & automation, the benefits of IIOT for companies and special sessions on cannabis manufacturing are just some of the areas that will be covered in this program. We look forward to a variety of robust presentations and discussions that will take place.

Food for Thought Sessions: Building upon the excellent feedback that we received at our last show, we have expanded our Food for Thought Sessions. Following are just a few of the great variety of thought provoking topics: augmented reality for packaging operations; facts and myths of high-pressure processing in pet foods; manufacturing & market challenges for cannabis production; the impact of the pandemic on the workforce; the new OSHA: what food processors should expect; why filtration matters in food & beverage processing; a look beyond the horizon for the alternative protein industry; new food fraud compliance requirements to for food processors; and how capital projects can cost effectively meet sustainability goals.

Network Meet-Ups: With the guidance and direction received by our Networks, we will be holding a series of meet-ups in a relaxed, informal venue on the show floor. These Meet-Ups will provide an opportunity to discuss key topics (technology, food safety, packaging, and workforce) that are critical for all six segments (Bakery, Beverage, Dairy, Meat, Prepared Foods, and Pet Foods) and which will allow for important cross industry collaboration. We hope all of you will be able to join us for these great interactive gatherings.

DEFEAT HUNGER Campaign/Presentation: Our continuing “Giving Back” initiatives will also be a highlight for everyone coming to the show. FPSA's partnership with the Greater Chicago Food Depository will be displayed at the show entrance and our press conference will take place on Thursday at 2pm in the main concourse where we will present our combined donations for our 2021 DEFEAT HUNGER drive. Thanks to your efforts, 51% of people living in food insecure households in Cook County, will be helped. There is still time for your team to donate to this great cause.

In closing, let me ask you to undertake one last effort before the opening of PROCESS EXPO and invite your customers to the show. The data overwhelmingly indicates that the most effective way to get attendees to our show is when you invite them. Given the importance of securing the audience we all want to see, I respectfully request that you invite them with the Feathr marketing platform, social media, your own CRM, —  any way you promote “our show” is appreciated.

We look forward to seeing you and the many attendees at the show!


David Seckman