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IFPA previews expected record-breaking Foodservice Conference

IFPA's record-breaking Foodservice Conference is on the way

Newark, DE and Washington, D.C. – As the produce in foodservice industry prepares to gather July 27-28 in Monterey, Calif., International Fresh Produce Association BB #:378962 CEO Cathy Burns looks forward to a record-breaking crowd of 2,000-plus, an insightful education program, and the best products and services on display at the expo. 

“This conference is the only place foodservice and produce meet, and anyone who is not attending will miss out on significant insights and innovations,” Burns added. “We are delighted that it is the go-to event for foodservice operators and distributors as well as the suppliers. We’re also pleased to have a strong contingent from the K-12 school system. These are the folks helping our kids enjoy and choose fresh produce as they form healthy eating habits for life. We celebrate the fact that the 2023 conference is a record year for operator attendance. 

“I’m both humbled and delighted to see this response from our members and our industry,” Burns said. “Even more important than the attendance numbers, this indicates that foodservice is coming back in full force, fresh produce remains an essential component in all foodservice operations, and IFPA’s Foodservice Conference is where it all connects.” 

In addition to unequaled attendance, the expo, Women’s Fresh Perspectives Reception, and Buyer Sourcing Meetings have all sold out.  

This decades-long event is where the who’s who of produce and foodservice intersect in a one-to-one buyer-seller ratio. “This is where we come to connect, learn, and do business,” Burns said. “Anyone in foodservice needs to be here, and I look forward to welcoming everyone to The Foodservice Conference.” 

The conference features multiple networking events and a strong education program including speakers such as:  

  • Monterey Bay Live! Panel: Art Kilmer, COO for P.F. Chang’s, Nazim Khan, CEC, WCEC, WCMC, executive chef of nutrition and dining services at Bryan Health, Lincoln, Neb., and Melissa Melshenker Ackerman, CEO of Planet Harvest 
  • Joe Pawlak, managing principal at Technomic, addressing how foodservice reacted to and is emerging from the past years of significant disruption 
  • Chefs panel discussing opportunities and challenges they see in today’s climate of inflation, supply and labor challenges, and the rise of plant-based and plant-forward menus 
  • K-12 panel of school and produce leaders working to increase students’ comfort-level, interest, and consumption of fresh produce at school and beyond 
  • A session on how to begin a sustainability program  
  • A conversation on foodservice industry efforts to advance inclusive procurement and supplier diversity to meet consumers’ increasingly values-based buying behaviors 

For conference information, visit  


About the International Fresh Produce Association (IFPA) 

The International Fresh Produce Association (IFPA) is the largest and most diverse international association serving the entire fresh produce and floral supply chain and the only to seamlessly integrate world-facing advocacy and industry-facing support.  We exist to bring the industry together to create a vibrant future for all.  We grow our member’s prosperity by conducting advocacy; connecting people and ideas; and offering guidance that allows us all to take action with purpose and confidence.  While IFPA is built on the legacy of United Fresh and Produce Marketing Association, it is not just a combination.  It is transformational.  Recognizing the industry required an even more powerful and unified voice, the leaders of the former United Fresh and Produce Marketing Association chose not to merge, but rather to create an entirely new organization to supersede their organizations, effective January 1, 2022.