In January, BEMA kicked of its first Baking Industry Forum (BIF) meeting of the New Year. The productive meeting heard from members of the Food Safety & Sanitation and Workforce groups and introduced opportunities to participate in a new IBIEducate Super-User group.


Food safety & sanitation

The Food Safety & Sanitation group reported on the Overall Risk Assessment tool (ORA) and its collaborative work with BEMA’s Safety & Sanitation Virtual Roundtable group. As a result of the work performed, the ORA tool is ready for use in the production environment. The Baking Industry Forum is eager for companies to try out the ORA tool. “By providing this resource, it is our intent to offer a tool that can help bakers and their suppliers access food safety risk within a manufacturing process,” Delia Justable said. “In addition to the ORA tool, we also provide a supplementary tool aimed at providing guidance for early management of food safety and sanitary design.”

Outcomes will be the topic of discussion during the next Food Safety & Sanitation virtual roundtable with subsequent analysis at a spring webinar and/or at the June Convention.

To participate in the Overall Risk Assessment project, contact Delia Justable at


To keep pace with the ever-changing elements of COVID-19 and its impacts on business operations, the Workforce group is focusing its efforts on gathering trends and information for sharing throughout the industry. Members of the group welcome those in an HR role to explore participation in the group.  Areas of immediate interest will be discussed at the upcoming HR Virtual Roundtable, hosted by Patricia Richards (Hearthside Foods) and Susan Potucek (Clif Bar & Company).

“When we ask our baking industry stakeholders what keeps them up at night, the response is quite often ‘people’, Emily shared.  “Continually evolving aspects of talent acquisition, training and retention, and knowledge management as the legacy generations pass the baton to industry new-comers are key issues that the Baking Industry Forum will explore.”

To participate in the Workforce group or HR Roundtable, contact Emily Bowers at