Institute of Food Technology Event Is a First

by Sara Steever
June 11, 2019

Every parent experiences important “firsts” with their children. First steps, first day at school, first car, first day at college and…first trade show?

Maybe I’m the only parent excited about that last one, but if you’re marketing agriculture, an event devoted to food technology has to make you a little bit curious. And it’s even better if you can attend with a budding food scientist!

My daughter, Elizabeth, is studying food science at South Dakota State University and is an Institute of Food Technology (IFT) member. I was lucky enough to attend the IFT19 in New Orleans with her—a first for me—and to view the show from a student’s perspective.

The yearly event explores trends in food and shares educational opportunities that support consumer demands for nutrition and novelty. It is an international show, with no shortage of tantalizing food and beverage samples, poster sessions and happy hours.

A highlight of the event for us was a chance to meet Temple Grandin, a rockstar in both animal ag circles and the food manufacturing industry. She was the opening speaker for the event and gave the food manufacturing side of our industry a view into the lives of those who toil on the production side. We can all welcome that dialogue!

Much of the event focused on where food is heading, so watch for our take on the top 10 trends in food in an upcoming Thinking article. Consumer interest and demand is bringing both challenges and opportunities to the production side of agriculture.

What was most exciting to me, besides spending time with my daughter, was to witness the science happening in food manufacturing. In a particularly trying year for ag, it is reassuring to know that smart people are working hard throughout our food supply chain. An abundant food future is ahead for all of us!

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