Policy & Regulatory Forum Schedule

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Tuesday, April 25, 2023

8:00 AM - 11:45 PM

Political Advisory Committee

District 1-2

Volunteer Leadership Meeting

11:00AM - 5:30PM

Registration Open

Location: Metropolitan Ballroom Foyer

12:00 PM - 4:30 PM

The Politics of Food - Key Debates That Will Shape the Federal Policy & Regulatory Agenda for 2023!

Location: Metropolitan Ballroom

As we plan for the future, it is worth reflecting on the environment in which the produce industry operates. 2022 brought us rising prices, labor challenges input cost, transportation challenges, inflation, and consumer doubts. But has we face these challenges we must also look ahead to our future and how we connect the fresh produce and floral supply chain to guide our industry to new opportunities.

Join industry colleagues for a thought-provoking exploration of four key topics that will dominate the food and agriculture policy in our Nation's Capital for 2023. You will hear from influential leaders, policy players, and both Administration and congressional representatives. Your role will be to discuss what collective action can we consider to create a vibrant future for the fresh produce and floral industry.

Luncheon Keynote Speaker: Ray Starling, Author of Farmers vs Foodies
We are pleased to be joined by Ray Starling, to discuss his recently released book Farmers vs Foodies. Ray has taken his many years of working in the food and agriculture space including serving as the Special Advisor for Agriculture for the President of the United States, Chief of Staff for the Secretary of Agriculture, and Chief of Staff for Senator Tom Tillis of North Carolina. Ray describes the battle with one side are “insiders” who understand the industry and are rightly proud of it, many of whom have dedicated their lives and livelihoods to it. On the other side are “outsiders” who champion the in-vogue notion that the industry is broken. Outsider influence in the food and farming system is growing, and Farmers versus Foodies offers a sincere inquiry into why that is the case.

Ray Starling headshot

Ray Starling
Author of Farmers vs. Foodies

General Session Discussion
During the general session we will dive into important, timely topics that are front and center for the fresh produce industry and political stakeholders. After each presentation, volunteer leader attendees will engage in tabletop discussions to share views and guide IFPA thought leadership.

1:30-2:00 PM : Are you ready for FDA’s Traceability Requirements?
In section 204 of FSMA, Congress gave FDA the authority to require additional traceability records for certain foods. FDA recently finalized a traceability rule using this and other authority, which affects the bulk of the produce supply chain, including all fresh-cut produce and several fresh produce commodities. When enforcement begins in approximately 1,000 days, will you be ready? Is your entire supply chain preparing for this? How does the Produce Traceability Initiative fit in? This discussion will identify what you need to know to prepare for one of the most important requirements under the Food Safety Modernization Act since its passage 12 years ago.


  • Ed Treacy, VP, Supply Chain and Sustainability, IFPA
  • Angela Fields, Senior Consumer Safety Officer, Coordinated Outbreak Response and Evaluation (CORE) Network, Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition, FDA
  • Andrew Kennedy, Principal Traceability Advisor, New Era Partners, Division of iFoodDS

2:00-2:30 PM: A Trillion Dollar Retail Opportunity: Nutrition in SNAP
Over the next 10 years, it is estimated that the nation’s largest federal feeding program – the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) - will spend $100 billion a year on benefits redeemed at retail. As Farm Bill deliberations begin, 2023 offers a timely opportunity for Congress to review the outcomes of federal nutrition programs. This debate ranges from budgetary implications to what type of foods should be eligible. Historically, restrictions and incentives are debated, but rarely given serious consideration during the Farm Bill process and allegiances do not fall neatly on one side of the political aisle. But now, with a record number of new Members of Congress and a renewed focus on the implications of diet-related disease on public health and the economy, could this be the year that dietary quality comes to the forefront? In this session, you will hear different perspectives on this debate providing you the opportunity to consider where IFPA should focus efforts in 2023.


  • Moderator: Helena Bottemiller Evich, Founder and Editor in Chief, Food Fix
  • Gina Plata-Nino, SNAP Deputy Director, Food Research & Action Center
  • Jerold Mande, CEO, Nourish Science; Adjunct Professor of Nutrition, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health

2:30-3:00 PM:  Perspectives on Consolidations, Acquisitions, and Mergers
In a post-pandemic world, businesses are focused on strengthening their market positions up and down the supply chain. Some of the techniques used to gain those positions have caught the attention of the Administration and Congress as they examine how consolidations, acquisitions, and mergers impact the marketplace, consumers, and supply chain partners. A recent USDA report focused on how concentration in the food retail industry is impacting local markets and communities. Contrast that federal assessment with the near weekly occurrence of new partnerships and business acquisitions that are reshaping the landscape of how produce moves locally and internationally. Join this conversation to hear policy makers and industry experts debate how these activities offer business opportunities while also raising concerns about the marketplace.


  • Moderator: Robert Guenther, Chief Public Policy Officer, IFPA
  • Jackie Caplan Wiggins, Advisor, Frieda’s Branded Produce
  • Stefanie Katzman, Executive Vice President, S. Katzman Produce 
  • Elyse Lipman, Chief Executive Officer, Lipman Family Farms

3:00-3:30 PMFarm Bill as Food Policy: Breaking Down & Building Up the Largest Public Investment in Food & Agriculture
Each reauthorization of the Farm Bill devotes hundreds of billions in public funding to a wide range of programs and policies that regulate ag production, farming, and food. Touching on issues from economic safety nets to pest management to trade and many more, this massive legislation reaches every corner of the food industry and the rural economy. For fresh produce and florals alone more than $3 Billion dollars flow directly into programs such as research, technology, school snacks for kids, prevention of pest and disease. Understanding how and why the Farm Bill impacts your part of the marketplace will help you better understand the federal government’s influence on your business and, as a volunteer leader, make you better informed to advise IFPA on advocacy priorities. Round out the day by exploring what Farm Bill programs would change the trajectory of fresh.


  • Rebeckah Adcock, VP, U.S. Government Relations, Government Relations, IFPA – Q&A Dialogue
  • John Newton, PhD, Chief Economist (R), Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry

3:30-4:30 PM:  Moderated panel discussion of Forum Speakers & Engagement

  • Moderator Helena Bottemiller Evich, Founder, FoodFix
  • Andrew Kennedy, Principal Traceability Advisor, New Era Partners, Division of iFoodDS
  • John Newton, PhD, Chief Economist (R), Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry
  • Jackie Caplan Wiggins, Advisor, Frieda’s Branded Produce
  • Stefanie Katzman, Executive Vice President, S. Katzman Produce 
  • Elyse Lipman, Chief Executive Officer, Lipman Family Farms
  • Gina Plata-Nino, SNAP Deputy Director, Food Research & Action Center
5:00 PM - 6:30 PM

Welcome Happy Hour

Location: Dupont Ballroom

6:30 PM - 9:00 PM

FreshPAC Event

Location: Pearl Street Warehouse, The Wharf DC

Address: 33 Pearl St SW, Washington, DC 20024 

After a busy day, here’s a fun opportunity to make a fresh impact with fellow industry leaders by personally supporting FreshPAC. The FreshPAC provides the resources needed to help elect and re-elect federal congressional candidates who advocate for the produce industry. By collectively contributing personal resources, the produce industry can make a difference in key campaigns across the country. To learn more about the FreshPAC and to purchase a ticket contact Angela Tiwari at atiwari@freshproduce.com or 202-303-3416

Wednesday, April 26, 2023

7:00 AM - 10:00 AM

Registration Open

Location: Metropolitan Ballroom Foyer

7:30 AM - 8:30 AM

Continental Networking Breakfast

Continental breakfast will be served for all attendees in the common area and can be enjoyed in your individual meeting room

8:00 AM - 11:30 AM

Standalone Volunteer Leadership Meetings

  • Food Safety Council
    Location: District 1-2
  • U.S. Government Relations Council
    Location: West End
  • Grower-Shipper Council
    Location: Gallery 8
  • Fresh-Cut Processor Council
    Location: Gallery 6
  • Wholesaler- Distributor
    Location: Quad 1-3
  • Organic Committee
    Location: Gallery 7

All attending volunteer leaders may observe in person meetings.

11:30 AM - 1:15 PM

Lunch General Session

Location: Metropolitan Ballroom

Interactive readouts from morning meetings prior to lunch. Following lunch, IFPA staff will walk attendees through each of our key message points for Congressional and Regulatory tracks.

11:30 AM - 12:15 PM Leadership Outlook Panel

  • Moderator: Robert Guenther, Chief Public Policy Officer
  • Chair, Grower-Shipper Council, Jeff Huckaby, President and CEO, Grimmway Farms
  • Chair, Fresh-Cut Processor Council, Judy Clark, CEO, Fresh Texas
  • Chair, Wholesaler-Distributor Council, Stefanie Katzman, Executive Vice President, S. Katzman Produce
  • Chair, Food Safety Council, Jennifer Pulcipher, Director of Food Safety & Compliance, North Bay Produce, Inc.
  • Chair, Organics Committee, Russ Hamlin, VP of Farming, Grimmway Farms
  • Chair, Political Advisory Committee, Tony Freytag, Executive Vice President Co Founder, Crunch Pak
  • Chair, U.S. Government Relations Council, Bret Erickson, Executive VP Business Affairs, Little Bear Produce


12:15 PM - 12:40 PM LUNCH


12:40 PM - 1:15 PM IFPA Expert Staff Panel

  • Moderator: Robert Guenther, Chief Public Policy Officer
  • Jennifer McEntire, Chief Food & Safety & Regulatory Officer
  • Rebeckah Adcock, VP, U.S. Government Relations
  • Mollie Van Lieu, VP, Nutrition and Health
  • John Hollay, Director, Government Relations
  • Angela Tiwari, Director, Grassroots & Political Affairs
1:15 PM - 4:30 PM

March on Washington: Congressional and Administration Meetings

Join industry colleagues for issue specific congressional, Administration and Embassy meetings. As you register, note your first and second issue area track preference, International Fresh Produce Association will pair you with appointments to address the latest critical issues impacting our industry, food safety, workforce, nutrition & increasing consumption, international trade, sustainability, and Farm Bill.

Bus Transportation from hotel to Garfield Circle 
Workforce and Farm Bill Capitol Hill transportation to the March on Washington events will depart from the front of Washington Marriott Georgetown on 22nd Street, beginning at 1:15pm and drop off in front of the United States Capitol Building, 1st and Maryland Ave., NW (curb of Garfield Circle). The Food Safety and Nutrition Tracks will begin their meetings onsite at the Marriott then depart for Capitol Hill at 2:30pm.  

March on Washington Tracks

  1. Workforce - Capitol Hill
    The future of our industry hinges on a reliable workforce in all segments of the supply chain. Join us for key discussions on our challenges and how we need federal policies to help us plant, harvest and deliver our products to consumers.
  2. Nutrition & Increasing Consumption  - Gallery 7, Second Floor, Washington Marriott Georgetown - then Capitol Hill 
    As the industry looks to implement our fruit and vegetable moonshots stemming from the historic 2022 White House Conference on Nutrition - hear from regulators and engage with policymakers around the policy levers and industry engagement needed to make this a reality.
  3. Farm Bill - Capitol Hill
    All congressional districts are significantly impacted by the Farm Bill. Personally deliver 2023 Farm Bill priorities to urban, suburban to the most rural congressional districts highlighting points that are of most consequential to their constituents.
  4. Food Safety - West End, Second Floor, Washington Marriott Georgetown - then Capitol Hill 
    The visibility of produce safety issues has caught the attention of regulators, policymakers, and the public. Engage with regulators at FDA who develop and implement food safety requirements, USDA AMS who supports voluntary industry audit standards, and policy makers who have been increasingly attentive to how FDA works with the industry to support food safety efforts.

Thank you for Attending the 2023 Policy & Regulatory Forum

Angela Tiwari

Angela Tiwari

Director, Grassroots & PAC

Government Relations