Chairman’s Letter
Providing Knowledge Tools for Success

The Snack Food Association is significantly broadening its educational services to members as we work to provide the continuing knowledge and information needed to help member company executives to be successful in an ever-changing business environment.
As we move forward, we will be explaining our comprehensive offering of business educational programming, ranging from our current seminars and short courses to new online for-credit courses and Webinars developed in concert with two of America’s leading universities.
Over the past year, the SFA has been working with The Ohio State University and St. Joseph’s University to create online course offerings targeted to meet the needs of our industry executives. I am pleased that we are nearing completion of this effort and will be offering enrollment opportunities shortly.
Through OSU, which has worked with the SFA on our Total Quality Management (TQM) seminar series for many years, we will be offering courses leading to an OSU certification in Food Service and Technology. SFA member companies will receive significant tuition discounts for this online coursework. St. Joseph’s University will provide a curriculum of courses in food marketing, which is a speciality of this outstanding institution. These online courses will be offered in March.
Meanwhile, SNAXPO 2007 in Hollywood, Fla., March 24-27, will help attendees broaden their industry knowledge and expertise through two major keynote addresses and eight concurrent educational sessions. On Sunday, March 25, Charles Fishman, author of The Wal-Mart Effect, will examine how the world’s most powerful and influential company will continue to influence our industry and our customers. On Monday, March 26, Sally Lyons Wyatt of Information Resources, Inc. (IRI), will present the State of the Snack Food Industry 2007 and discuss how consumer and market demands are reshaping the industry. She also will discuss performance of specific snack food categories over the past year. (For more details, see the SNAXPO article in this section.)
Finally, SFA members have an opportunity to learn about important political and governmental developments and present their own views directly to lawmakers and regulators during the annual the SFA Day in DC. Spring Summit, May 16-18, in Washington, D.C. Attendees will hear presentations from top government officials and meet directly with key Congressmen and Senators and their staffs.
All these developments are intended to improve the knowledge of SFA member executives in many important areas — business acumen and technical and marketing expertise, as well as  political understanding. I hope each of you will take advantage of these opportunities, and I look forward to seeing you at SNAXPO and again at the Spring Summit in May.
Rich Rudolph, SFA Chairman