The Feed and Pet Food Joint Industries Conference was held in Chicago, IL Sept. 22-24 where "attendees received inside information on a wide range of legislative, regulatory and business trends that will shape their feed and pet food businesses in the year ahead," said Randy Gordon, National Grain and Feed Association (NGFA) vice president of communications and government relations.
Organized by the Pet Food Institute (PFI) and the NGFA, the first-ever event focused on the most important business trends, food and feed safety developments, and operations issues confronting the animal feed and pet food industries. There were more than 300 in attendance and the trade show was filled to capacity. Fifteen program topics were addressed by an all-star lineup of industry and government speakers throughout the conference.
The conference program featured Jeff Farrar, associate commissioner for food protection at the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), who focused on significant changes underway within the agency to implement a more prevention- and risk-based approach to food, animal feed and pet food safety that will affect all feed, feed ingredient and pet food manufacturers and suppliers.
In addition to Farrar’s keynote address, FDA and state feed regulatory officials discussed the new food/feed safety legislation being considered by Congress, and what it would require of feed, feed ingredient and pet food manufacturers and their suppliers.
Industry experts also discussed how feed, feed ingredient and pet food companies can incorporate hazard analysis and critical control point (HACCP) principles and controls to prevent product safety hazards into their operations. In addition, given the increased frequency of FDA and state inspections likely to be mandated under the new food/feed safety legislation, another major program session focused on how companies can prepare for such inspections, including effectively exercising their rights and obligations.
“This conference was a great opportunity for executives, managers and operations personnel with companies involved in the animal feed and pet food sectors – and suppliers to our industry –to obtain tangible information and tools they need to address head-on the most critical business, regulatory and operational challenges they will face in the years ahead,” said PFI President Duane Ekedahl.
"Based on the success and very positive reaction from attendees and exhibitors, NGFA and PFI are actively planning a second such conference next year," said Gordon.