Making Snacks Global at SNAXPO 2004

By Ann Przybyla Wilkes
SFA Vice President of Communications

Philadelphia embodies the spirit of liberty, which translates into the freedom to pursue opportunity, including the opportunity to investigate new ideas in business, explore advances in technology, and pursue innovations in marketing. This makes Philadelphia the ideal location for SNAXPO 2004, March 20-23.

Attendees at the largest convention in the world devoted exclusively to the snack food industry will also be in the city that is home to the Liberty Bell and the new, state-of-the-art National Constitution Center. The birthplace of American independence, Philadelphia offers hometown hospitality, in addition to a unique variety of great restaurants, shopping and museums.
The rich history of Philadelphia and the surrounding area is only part of Philadelphia's attraction to SNAXPO attendees. With more than 30 snack food companies, employing some 10,000 industry workers, Pennsylvania is the “Heartland of the U.S. Snack Food Industry.” The State is home to more than 50 manufacturing plants that utilize hundreds of processing lines to produce more than 100 different snack products.
When snack food manufacturers from all over the world and suppliers to the industry come to Philadelphia, they will learn about “Making Snacks: a Global Business.” (See sidebar on International events at SNAXPO.)
Tastykake's Pizzi Talks About a Philadelphia Success Story
Back in 1914, a Pittsburgh baker, Philip J. Baur, and a Boston egg salesman, Herbert T. Morris, saw an opportunity to produce and sell cakes made only from the highest-quality ingredients and they acted on it. The result was the Tasty Baking Company and its famous Tastykakes. The idea of small cakes, pre-wrapped fresh at the bakery and conveniently available at the local grocer, appealed to consumers.
Today the company’s gross annual sales exceed $255 million. Tasty Baking Company’s president and CEO Charles P. Pizzi will provide insight into the company’s success as a keynote speaker at SNAXPO. He will also discuss the challenges faced by the baking industry and ways to overcome them. Solutions include increasing sales through the company’s core routes, new initiatives and strategic partnerships, and finding partners to put products on a larger direct store delivery system.  
State of the Snack Food Industry 2004
Kim Feil, CEO, Mosaic InfoForce, and Snack and Beverage Innovation Practice Leader, and Information Resources, Inc. (IRI), will present the highly anticipated State of the Snack Food Industry report. She will review the major snack food categories and discuss how current trends are affecting the performance of the industry.
Snack and meal occasions have blurred to the point that the snacking market has evolved from the traditional salty, bakery and confection categories of the past.  Feil will explain how current consumer trends are impacting snack food sales, new product introductions and consumers’ behavior.  In addition, she will present up-to-date snack food sales and consumer insights, including information on manufacturers’ drive to introduce healthy options, respond to high- protein diets and fulfill the heightened demand for snack-meal combinations on-the-go.  
Kim Feil has extensive experience in the snacking and consumer goods business. Joining IRI in 1998, Feil’s responsibilities include creating solutions-based information services for clients. Feil’s snack experience includes five years with Frito-Lay working on Doritos and Ruffles Brands, and new products.  She has also worked for Kentucky Fried Chicken and Cadbury Beverages (now Dr Pepper/7 Up).  

Leading Lean
Snack manufacturers and others need to be fast, flexible and adaptable, and produce the highest-quality products and services for the lowest cost to compete successfully in global and domestic markets. Andy Carlino, Founder and Partner of Achievement Dynamics, Inc., will discuss how to accomplish this. He will explain the need for companies to do more than just invest in new technologies or eliminate staff. Companies must create lean systems throughout their entire organization, not just manufacturing.  
Attendees in this session will learn about the tools, techniques and thinking of lean systems development based on real-life application and experiences, not just theory. Lean is the future and it’s not optional, says Carlino.

Food Retailing Challenges
Food retailers today are facing increasing challenges. Richard Kochersperger, director of the Center for Food Marketing at St. Joseph University, will discuss the difficult business environment that retailers face. He will provide insight on the changing consumer and the food industry’s response to these changes. Included in his presentation will be information on RFID (radio frequency identification systems). Kochersperger will also tell SNAXPO attendees what these challenges mean to the snack food industry.

OSHA Update: Ergonomics and Beyond
Gil Abramson, representing SFA’s General Council, Hogan & Hartson LLP, will provide insight on meeting OSHA regulations. A specialist in employment law, Abramson will discuss plant safety and security, ergonomics, workplace violence, and other issues of concern to snack food manufacturers.