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The Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI) will hold its 19th annual conference in Seattle, USA on 25–28 February 2020. Coinciding with GFSI’s 20th anniversary, this edition is set to be the most highly-attended yet. We’ve taken this opportunity to revamp the conference programming, with new interactive sessions and more science and technology-focused content than ever before.

Showcasing innovation in every sector

The curated roster of 75 speakers is as international and interdisciplinary as the delegation. Food industry professionals from retail and manufacturing companies share the stage with leaders from the agencies tasked with regulating them, like the US FDA or the German Federal Office of Consumer Protection and Food Safety.

Delegates will also hear from a broad range of experts concerned with food safety and science, including Spanish researcher Dr. Ana Allende of the CSIC, Tom Heilandt, Head of the Codex Alimentarius Commission Secretariat and Charlie Arnot, CEO of The Centre for Food Integrity. Read more about the speakers on our online list, which we update every week with new profiles.

Each speaker will touch upon the annual theme for 2020: One Connected World. One Safe Food Supply. This theme was chosen to spark discussion around innovation, especially technological methods of connectivity, that can help provide safer food for consumers everywhere. In plenaries, thematically-linked breakout sessions, morning Special Sessions and afternoon Tech Talks, delegates can discover the innovations that are impacting every sector concerned with keeping food safe.

In Plenary 3, ‘Inspect What We Expect’, delegates can learn about the science-based best practices that underpin food safety systems with speakers like Peter Taormina, President of Etna Consulting Group. Those with an interest in the monitoring technologies used by companies like Amazon can check out Plenary 5, ‘Technology and Transparency’, which considers the ways these innovations can help the industry move towards greater transparency. In Plenary 2, Edmond Scanlon, Executive Director and CEO of the Kerry Group will offer lessons on leadership in food safety. Take a look at our programme sneak peek to see the many other topics on offer.

An interactive experience

Seattle, one of the fastest-growing tech hubs in the United States, is an appropriate host for this science-focused GFSI Conference. Delegates may begin the conference week by attending a guided Discovery Tour through the city that produced some of the world’s most influential disruptors in technology and retail. The tour will take participants behind the scenes of multinational companies with Seattle roots, including Amazon, Costco Wholesale and Starbucks.

The conference committee has designed new features for this edition of the GFSI Conference that reflect Seattle’s reputation as a hotbed of business. These features include an interactive presentation patterned after the popular programme ‘Shark Tank’, in which sellers or users of promising food safety technologies will pitch their innovations on stage. The audience will then vote for a winner, who will receive recognition in the closing plenary.

Further food safety innovations and cutting-edge technologies will be on display at the GFSI Village, the conference’s networking and exhibition area. Over 40 booths and stages make up this vibrant community, where delegates can engage with exhibitors, exchange ideas and discuss business with peers from around the world.

Delegates are encouraged to register soon to guarantee their place in a conversation that will shape the future of food safety. Registrations are open at the GFSI website, mygfsi.com.

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