Feed and Food Industries Convene in Atlanta
Educational session recaps and video highlights from the 2014 International Production & Processing Expo
Winter is the season when grain handlers and feed manufactures take stock in the past year and look to get a jump on next year’s issues, all while catching up with friends and colleagues in the industry. Feed & Grain’s staff braved one of the worst winters on record to attend the International Production & Processing Expo in Atlanta.
The massive IPPE is hosted by the U.S. Poultry & Egg Association, American Meat Institute and the American Feed Industry Association. Sprawling across two of the three halls of the Georgia World Congress Center, it can take the better part of a half hour to walk from one end to the other. This year’s event totaled 24,865 registrants — only down 3,000 from the projected attendance despite inclement weather in Atlanta. That number includes 5,456 international registrants. More than 1,150 companies exhibited the most cutting-edge equipment, supplies and services that the feed industry has to offer across 410,000 net square feet.
Education program highlights
AFIA International Feed Education Program
The AFIA summarized some of the government mandates that will be changing the way those in the feed industry operate. These include changes in record keeping, OSHA’s Hazard Communications Standard, and a new labeling that will be implemented to coincide with Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labeling of Chemicals. Finally, much of the focus was on the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA), perhaps the most sweeping reform that the industry has had to deal with in decades. The main takeaway from the session was that implementation of FSMA is imminent, so start preparing your facility for compliance with it now.
AFIA Pet Food Conference
The day-long Pet Food Conference grew again this year, with 275 people attending despite the weather. FSMA took center stage, as pet food manufacturers will have even more regulation placed on their shoulders than feed mill operators. Other topics included the growing trend among consumers to buy their pets “green” pet food. This market has room to grow, considering there are more pets in American households today than children. The final topic was “innovation,” and that it means more than just new technology, but also being able to adapt to ways of thinking in order to meet new challenges and consumer demands. On the scene at IPPE, Feed & Grain recorded industry supplier and association interviews. Read on for summaries of their demonstrations and insights, and visit www.FeedandGrain.com/video to view the full clips.