Annual GFSI Conference Goes Virtual March 23-25
2020 GFSI Conference

Annual GFSI Conference Goes Virtual March 23-25

The remote events will bring together more than 500 food industry leaders, government representatives IGOs and food industry stakeholders from more than 60 countries.

March 5, 2021

PARIS — The Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI), part of The Consumer Goods Forum and a network that aims to help achieve safe food for people everywhere, is encouraging food safety professionals around the globe to join the virtual annual GFSI Conference from March 23-25. 

The interactive three-day forum, now in its 20th year, is gearing up to convene hundreds of experts, decision makers and innovators from more than 60 countries to share food safety best practices and encourage ongoing collaboration and action. Following an unprecedented 12 months for the food and beverage industry, this year’s theme is "Rethink, Reset, Recharge."

Attendees will hear examples of leadership, ingenuity and innovation, with expert speakers providing insights to address common challenges — helping to achieve the shared goal of safe food for consumers around the world. Senior leaders and experts from Amazon, HelloFresh, Coca-Cola, Mars, Cargill, Target, PepsiCo, Walmart, Queen’s University Belfast, Georgia University of Technology and the World Health Organization (WHO) are among those delivering talks and presentations.

The conference will explore the most urgent topics in food safety — from COVID-19, supply chain disruption and public health, to building trust and transparency with consumers, as well as best practices, leading innovations and technologies set to shape the future food safety. The wide-ranging speakers include experts and academics, CEOs, public authorities, industry leaders, innovators and grassroots professionals. 

“Collaboration to ensure safe food for consumers everywhere and sustainable food systems has never been more critical — and this event provides a major opportunity to learn from an unprecedented period and move forwards in the best possible way," Erica Sheward, director of the GFSI, said. "We’re excited by the chance to help colleagues across the industry build on the ingenuity, resilience and dedication shown by the food industry over the past 12 months.

“With the conference taking place virtually for the first time, it’s easier than ever before for food industry professionals to get involved — and we’re urging people from all corners of the globe to ensure they’re part of this unique and collaborative forum. Food safety is everyone’s business, and we must continue to work together to build consumers’ trust in the food they buy.”

GFSI has set up bespoke online networking features to ensure attendees can establish new connections across the global community and strengthen existing relationships. 

As part of the interactive conference experience, attendees will be able to create personalized virtual versions of themselves, which they can move around a 3D immersive site to meet and mingle with others — no matter where they are in the world. 

Highlight sessions and speakers across the three-day program include:

  • Leading in times of crisis with Dirk van de Put, chairman and CEO, Mondelēz International 
  • The evolution of e-commerce: How COVID-19 has impacted food safety operations — including insights from Amazon’s head of food safety EMEA 
  • COVID-19, public health and food safety: A call for leadership and resilience — with the assistant director-general of UHC/healthier populations at the WHO 
  • The frontier of food safety: new science, discoveries and innovations — with Mars
  • Doing the right thing: Food Safety Trust and Transparency — with the director general of consumers international and the University of Oxford
  • Auditing tomorrow with Yunling Zheng from Cargill
  • Keynote speech from Dr. Andrew Steele, scientist and author of "Ageless: The New Science of Getting Older Without Getting Old"

This year’s event also includes all-new sessions such as Ask GFSI Q&A panels on the final day — giving attendees the chance to put a wide range of topics directly to the GFSI leadership to hear their views on key issues.