GMA Science Forum 2019



  • Tuesday, March 26, 2019

    7:00 am – 4:00 pm

    Registration Open

    8:30 am – 9:30 am

    Continental Breakfast with Exhibitors

    9:30 am – 12:30 pm 

    Learning Lab Session 1:   Innovation – What Does the Future Hold?

    FDA’s comprehensive, multi-year Nutrition Innovation Strategy seeks to cut obesity rates and reduce the prevalence of chronic conditions such as diabetes, cancer and heart disease through several key activities. Other sectors have engaged with consumers outside of the regulatory space to improve consumers’ health status. This session explores all aspects of innovation that are being employed to the benefit of consumers.


    Sarah Levy; Global Director, Food & Nutrition Affairs; FoodMinds


    Claudine Kavanaugh; Senior Advisor for Nutrition Policy, Office of Food Policy and Response; FDA

    Emily Craft; In-Store Nutritionist; Giant Food

    Wendy Reinhardt Kapsak, President & CEO, Produce for Better Health Foundation

    Eric Dell; Senior Vice President, External Affairs; National Automatic Merchandising Association

    Emily Valentine; Director, Insights & Strategy; Padilla


    Learning Lab Session 2: Tools for Building a Robust Food Defense Plan

    July 2019.  Are you ready? The first compliance date for the last of the FSMA Final Rules, Intentional Adulteration, is nearly here. This highly popular session will include an overview of FDA’s revised draft guidance on Intentional Adulteration and how industry is preparing to implement the requirements of the Final Rule. Hear from various-sized companies on how they approached their vulnerability assessments and the implementation of the rule along with some learnings along the way.  The session also provides a unique opportunity to collaborate with your peers on a hands-on food defense activity


    Kristen Spotz; Manager, Food Safety and Quality Assurance, GMA


    Warren Stone; Consultant; Zone One Consulting, LLC

    Ryan Newkirk; Senior Advisor for Intentional Adulteration, CFSAN, Office of Analytics & Outreach; FDA

    Clay Detlefsen; Senior Vice President, Environmental and Regulatory Affairs & Staff Counsel; National Milk Producers Federation

    Neal Fredrickson; Global Food Defense Specialist; Cargill, Inc.

    Elizabeth Fawell; Partner; Hogan Lovells

    Jason Bashura; Sr. Manager, Global Food Defense; Pepsico


    Learning Lab Session 3: Spark Your Imagination: CBD in the CPG Industry

    With the legalization of recreational cannabis in Canada and increasing legalization across the US, cannabis and “cannabusiness” are hot topics in the food and beverage space. At the same time, there is a rise in the use of CBD products across the industry. Despite the uncertainty, bold companies push forward to develop new and innovative products. This session outlines the current legal and regulatory framework around CBD and cannabis and tackles the various challenges in development from a scientific and operational standpoint. From the differences in the cannabinoid compounds, to struggles with scale-up, participants come away with an understanding of the current landscape as well as an outline of future opportunities in this realm. This session features speakers from a range of perspectives to give attendees a full picture of the state of cannabis in food and beverage, including one entrepreneur with a line of THC and CBD-infused products already in the market. A new topic for the GMA Science Forum, this session is not to be missed. 


    Karin Moore; Senior Vice President and General Counsel; GMA


    Roy Bingham; Co-Founder and CEO; BDS Analytics.

    Marielle Weintraub; Strategic Business Development Director - Hemp Initiative; EuroFins Food Integrity and Innovation

    Michael Lewis; CEO, Sprig

    Ricardo Carvajal; Director; Hyman, Phelps & McNamara, P.C.


    Science and Regulatory Affairs Committee (SRAC) Meeting(Invite Only)

    12:30 pm — 1:30 pm

    Keynote Luncheon with Speaker

    FSIS will provide an update on the agency’s current regulatory agenda and what the industry can expect to see moving forward in the areas of inspection modernization, dual jurisdiction issues, among other regulatory initiatives.


    Dr. Mindy M. Brashears; Deputy Under Secretary for Food Safety, USDA-FSIS

    1:30 pm — 4:30 pm

    Learning Lab Session 4: Current Issues in CPG Packaging

    Packaging is fundamental when it comes to ensuring the quality and safety of products on the market. The consumer-packaged goods (CPG) industry has increasingly been called on to develop packaging solutions which are sustainable without sacrificing the quality and safety of products. Attend this session to hear from experts about current issues impacting CPG packaging, including: packaging end-of-life, chemicals of concern, food contact materials and sustainability.


    Jim Huang; Director, Food Contact Materials, Global Scientific & Regulatory Affairs; The Coca-Cola Company


    Devon Hill; Partner; Keller & Heckman LLP

    Meghan Stasz; Senior Director, Sustainability; GMA

    Tom Neltner; Chemicals Policy Director; Environmental Defense Fund 


    Learning Lab Session 5: Whole Genome Sequencing (WGS) Technology for Food Industry

    Whole Genome Sequencing (WGS) technology is a well-established food safety and public health tool in the United States.  Regulatory and public health agencies are making the transition from existing technology to WGS for foodborne pathogens.  Food safety professionals need a basic understanding of WGS technology and how to communicate with regulatory officials. This session will cover the basics of WGS technology and walk through how it is used for foodborne disease investigations using recent case studies.  The session incorporates a panel discussion on regulatory policy related to the usage of WGS, and how the industry can prepare to respondent to regulatory officials with WGS data in results of inspections.


    Deann Akins-Lewenthal; Director, Microbiology and Food Safety; Conagra Brands, Inc.


    Haley F. Oliver; Associate Professor; Purdue University

    Emily Griep; Manager, Food Safety; United Fresh Produce Association

    Sanjay Gummalla; Vice President, Scientific and Regulatory Affairs; American Frozen Food Institute

    KatieRose McCullough; Director, Scientific and Regulatory Affairs; North American Meat Institute


    Learning Lab Session 6: From Crackers to Cleaning products: An Open Forum on Ingredient Disclosure

    Regardless of the product category, ingredient transparency is increasingly important to consumers. Transparency is more than just an industry buzzword; it has become the calling card for fast-moving, consumer goods manufacturers and a platform to initiate regulatory change. There is no doubt that consumer demand exists for ingredient transparency, but to what extent? With the increasing need for more information including additional details on cleaning ingredients, labeling for all gene-edited products, advisory statements for allergens, and warning statements for chemicals of concern, what does transparency really look like? In this session, participants will hear consumer groups, non-profits and CPG companies discuss these questions and forecast future issues related to transparency and disclosure. Join the conversation!


    Manojit Basu; Senior Director, Science and Technology; GMA


    Jack Bobo; Vice President, Global Policy & Government Affairs; Intrexon

    Melanie Condon; External Affairs and Issues Management; Unilever

    Tony Flood; Senior Director, Food Ingredient Communications; International Food Information Council Foundation

    Jon Hoffman; Associate Director, Advocacy; FARE 

    Diane McColl; Director and Principle; Hyman, Phelps & McNamara, P.C.

    Julie Savoie; Director, SmartLabel®; GMA

    Shaunice Wall; Linda Golodner, Food Safety and Nutrition Fellow; National Consumer League


    SRAC Meeting (Invite Only)

    4:30 pm — 5:30 pm Kick-Off Reception
  • Wednesday, March 27, 2019

    6:30 am — 5:00 pm

    Registration Open

    7:30 am — 8:15 am Continental Breakfast with Exhibitors

    8:15 am — 9:15 am

    Welcome & Opening Keynote

    The Future of GMA and the Role of Science in a Modern Trade Association

    Hear from GMA’s new President and CEO, Geoff Freeman on how GMA is transforming to meet the needs of the industry and grow as a trade association.  Betsy Booren, GMA’s new lead for the Science and Technology program will share how science and regulatory affairs plays a role in the new modern GMA.  Tom Ferriter, CEO of Bush Brothers and Company, will moderate a dynamic fire side chat with the two new executives.


    Tom Ferriter; CEO; Bush Brothers and Company


    Geoff Freeman; President and CEO; GMA

    Betsy Booren; Senior Vice President, Science and Technology; GMA

    9:45 am — 10:45 am

    General Session: Rapid Fire General Session Featuring Four Hot Topics Impacting the CPG Industry

    This session will include an overview of four hot topics impacting the CPG industry and tee up the four follow-up breakout sessions that will dive deeper into each of the topics.  Topics include: 1) Breaking down blockchain, 2) Clean labeling, 3) Biotechnology labeling, 4) Communicating science.

    Moderator: Betsy Booren; Senior Vice President, Science and Technology; GMA


    John Keogh; President and Principal Advisor; Shantalla Inc.

    David Lundahl; CEO; InsightsNow, Inc.

    Martin Hahn; Partner, Hogan Lovells

    Joe Hansen; Senior Director, Digital Communications and Engagement; Biotechnology Innovation Organization

    11:00 am – 12:00 pm

    Rapid Fire 1Breaking Down Blockchain - Myth or Magic

    Sponsored by:

    CPG supply chains encompass a complex network of trading parties, processing steps and transactions across the globe. Technology solutions are used for the management all aspects of the supply chain, including documentation, laboratory analyses, invoices, and others. Can blockchain deliver on supply chain efficiencies, traceability, provenance and the value proposition to transform CPG supply chains? This interactive session, presented by the GMA Science and Education Foundation, will promote audience participation and feedback.


    Brian Bedard; Executive Director of the Science and Education Foundation, GMA


    John Keogh; President and Principal Advisor; Shantalla Inc.

    Josh Mellinger; Senior Engagement Manager; Deloitte Consulting LLP


    Rapid Fire 2: A Clear Perspective on Clean Labeling

    Trust. Influence. Reputation. Accountability. Consumers are demanding more transparency in every aspect of their lives—especially in what they and their families eat and drink, place on their skin, and breath or come into contact from within their home environments. Join us to explore this free-from movement where 1 in 4 consumers demand a clean label in over half of the products they buy.  Learn why perception is reality, driven by the new trust economy where likes on social media signal trust more than marketing content from large corporations or scientific “facts” from academia or the government.  Backed by 19,000 responses from U.S. primary shoppers and a database of hundreds of thousands of behavioral measures, this session offers six recommendations for how to overcome the clean label challenge for market success.  Hear case studies from industry leaders who are accelerating their learning cycles by having access to Clean Label Enthusiasts and these behavioral measures to generate KPIs about consumer clean label perceptions to make ingredient and claim decisions for the brands they support.


    Kristen Scott; Director, Health and Nutrition Policy; GMA


    David Lundahl; CEO; InsightsNow, Inc.

    Mimi Sherlock; Global Director, Strategic Insights-Flavors; International Flavors & Fragrances 

    Menexia Tsoubeli; Vice President R&D; Campbell Fresh, a Division of Campbell Soup Company 


    Rapid Fire 3: Everything You Need to Know On GMO. The National Bioengineered Disclosure Standard and Labeling Requirements

    Sponsored by:

    Interested to learn how the final rule on the mandatory Bioengineered Disclosure Standard (BE Disclosure Rule) will impact your company? This session will help you learn more about key elements of the final rule and how your company can prepare to comply.


    Martin Hahn; Partner; Hogan Lovells


    Samuel Jockel; Associate; Keller and Heckman LLP

    Greg Jaffe; Director of the Project on Biotechnology; Center for Science in the Public Interest


    Rapid Fire 4: From the Laboratory to Local News: Communicating Science to Skeptical Consumers 

    Non-GMO carrots. Gluten-free Bacon. Plant-based lettuce. Consumers are bombarded with more labels than ever before and communicating the science-based facts are more difficult than ever. This highly complex, often extremally technical information needs to be broken down into bite-sized messages that the average consumer can understand. Hear directly from communicators who work with scientists every day about bridging the gap between your science and messages that resonate. A wrap-up discussion around emerging consumer trends will follow as we look ahead at what new topics present opportunity for education in the future.


    Katie McBreen; Vice President, Communications and Research; GMA


    Joe Hansen; Senior Director, Digital Communications and Engagement; Biotechnology Innovation Organization

    Lynn Dornblaser; Director, Consumer Packaged Goods Trend Insight; Mintel

    Note: This event is not open to the Press

    12:15 pm – 1:15 pm

    Keynote Lunch with Speaker: Update on FDA’s Regulatory Agenda

    Sponsored by: 

    FDA will provide an update on the agency’s current regulatory agenda and what the industry can expect to see moving forward in the areas of health and nutrition strategies, FSMA implementation, labeling, ingredient safety and more.


    Frank Yiannas; Deputy Commissioner, Food Policy and Response; FDA 

    1:30 pm – 2:30 pm

    2nd Round Rapid Fire Sessions (Repeated Sessions from 1st Round)

    Rapid Fire 1Breaking Down Blockchain - Myth or Magic 

    Sponsored by:

    Rapid Fire 2: A Clear Perspective on Clean Labeling

    Rapid Fire 3: Everything You Need to Know On GMO. The National Bioengineered Disclosure Standard and Labeling Requirements

    Sponsored by:

    Rapid Fire 4: From the Laboratory to Local News: Communicating Science to Skeptical Consumers

    2:45 pm – 3:45 pm

    Breakout Sessions:

    Supply Chain Verification in Co-Manufacturing Arrangements

    Sponsored by:

    Do you co-manufacture food under someone else’s brand or are you a brand owner that uses co-manufacturers to produce some of your products?  If so, then this session is for you.  This session reviews the supply-chain program requirements in Preventive Controls for Human Food and FDA’s 2017 guidance on supply chain requirements in co-manufacturing arrangements.  This session highlights some of the issues and challenges that lead to FDA’s enforcement discretion as outlined in the 2017 guidance.  In addition, from this session learn how one company approaches supplier verification in co-manufacturing arrangements.


    Kristen Spotz; Manager, Food Safety and Quality Assurance; GMA


    Tammy Hogan; Global External Quality Manager; General Mills

    Elizabeth Fawell; Partner; Hogan Lovells

    Jenny Scott; Senior Advisor, CFSAN, Office of Food Safety; FDA


    Processed-Formed Chemicals and Proposition 65

    Processed-formed chemicals (PFC) may exist in food either due to their natural presence or as reaction products due to cooking. PFCs offer a unique challenge to food safety authorities due to the nature and context in which these compounds are produced. This challenge produces misleading or potentially incorrect information to consumers and risk managers. This session provides various perspectives of the latest science around PFCs and will dive into topics such as PFCs and Proposition 65 and the use of risk assessment methods for PFC food safety.


    Manojit Basu; Senior Director, Regulatory Affairs; GMA


    Trent Norris; Partner; Arnold & Porter

    James R. Coughlin; President; Coughlin & Associates


    Current Practices and Future Opportunities in Food Standards of Identity (SOI)

    Conflicting opinions exist on the role of Standards of Identity (SOI) in the marketplace.  FDA’s Nutrition Innovation Strategy seeks to modernize SOI in an effort to promote public health through empowering consumers to make better and more informed decisions about their diets and health while fostering the development of healthier food options.  Join us for a spirited conversation highlighting the changing role of SOIs and future of food standards in the marketplace.


    Mark Nelson; Consultant; EAS Consulting Group


    Laura MacCleery; Policy Director; Center for Science in the Public Interest

    Clay Detlefsen; Senior Vice President, Environmental and Regulatory Affairs & Staff Counsel; National Milk Producers Federation

    Shannon Campagna; Vice President; Van Scoyoc Associates, on behalf of the Plant Based Foods Association


    Acid and Acidified Foods Classification Based on Food Safety Risk Assessment

    Acidified foods make up a narrow product category that has specific filing criteria with the FDA. In 2010, the ‘’Draft Guidance for Industry: Acidified Foods’’ was issued by the FDA. This guidance document, withdrawn at the end of 2015, outlined the types of products that required acidified filings leaving many questions about the categorization of acidified foods and compliance with FDA filing requirements. This session will outline the description of acidified foods, historical approaches to this type of processing, effects of the withdrawn guidance, and the role of water in acidified foods.


    George Stoforos; Fellow, Food Processing and Safety; GMA


    Yuqian Lou; Process Authority & Senior Manager, Global Food Safety/Process Technology; PepsiCo Inc.

    Wilfredo Ocasio; Senior Director; Eurofins Food Integrity and Innovation

    4:15 pm – 5:30 pm

    Sip and Chat Idea Exchange: 

    We are excited to announce the continuation of our highly popular Idea Exchange Program!  This year, the Idea Exchange will be staged in an engaging format allowing all attendees to participate in interactive, intimate and informal discussions around industry “hot topics”, critical issues or simply sharing of ideas and information from a variety of perspectives. Choose to attend the session with the topic of interest to you!

    1.  Nutrition Innovation Strategy - Where do we go next?

    2.  Ingredient Disclosure – Opportunities and Challenges for the CPG-Industry

    3.  Inspection Trends and Recall Learnings

    4.  Managing Food Safety in the Supply Chain

    Note: This event is not open to the Press

    5:30 pm – 6:30 pm

    Conference Connections (Reception)

    Sponsored by:


    6:30 pm – 8:30 pm

    Forum Finale & Dinner with Entertainment


    Scott Dikkers, 

    Founder of The Onion and Public Relations and Marketing Authority


    Sponsored by:


    With The Onion, Scott Dikkers created the original “fake news” platform and grew it into one of today’s most recognized comedy brands. He shares his experiences in how being committed to a unique vision—and standing firm in the face of seemingly impossible challenges and threats—can translate into genuine differentiation and robust brand equity for any organization.

    As co-founder and longest-serving editor-in-chief of The Onion, Scott has a deep appreciation of the improbable. It’s a quality that not only describes how he created a celebrated comedy institution, but also of his escape from dire childhood circumstances.

    A small, shy kid, Scott endured an upbringing marked by poverty, divorce, bullying, and even a suicide attempt at the age of eight. He found solace and inspiration from Mad, the groundbreaking satirical magazine, which fed his passion for comedy and later helped inspire him to create The Onion.

    In his latest book, Outrageous Marketing, and his many speaking engagements, Scott details how he staffed the company with quirky individuals who often had unstable family environments similar to his and shared his dark sense of humor. You’ll laugh as you hear how the freedom and support he gave his writing team enabled The Onion to break through the noise in a media-saturated landscape, overcome doubters and legal obstacles, and prove time and again that being outrageous leads to the best possible version of your brand. Furthermore, you’ll understand how some of the most basic principles embraced by Scott can help you transcend your organization’s marketing limitations, get the best work out of your employees, and attract devoted lifelong customers.

  • Thursday, March 28, 2019

    7:00 am – 5:00 pm

    Registration Open

    7:45 am – 9:00 am Breakfast with Exhibitors

    9:00 am – 12:00 pm

    Chemicals Management Committee (CMC) Meeting (Members Only)

    Nutrition, Health & Labeling Committee (NHL) Meeting (Members Only)

    Networking Lunch Provided

    9:00 am — 4:00 pm

    Joint Committee Meeting (Members Only):

    Regulatory Inspections & Compliance Committee (RICC)

    Food Allergens Committee (FAC)

    Microbiological Safety Committee (MSC)

    Networking Lunch Provided

    Note: Committee meetings are not open to the Press.