Veteran, Entrepreneur, Nurse To Address MWFPA Convention

Lt. Col. Janis Nark USAR (Ret.) will be MWFPA’s Wednesday luncheon keynote speaker at our annual convention November 29th.

She’ll take you on the journey of her life, from her inauspicious start in a Detroit suburb to private boarding schools in Europe. Actress, Registered Nurse, Ski Instructor, Fashion Designer, Entrepreneur, Professional Speaker; Janis is all of these. Surviving and excelling in six different professions on three different continents and through two wars, Janice knows about stress and change in today’s chaotic world. She has assisted individuals, corporations and associations in dealing with these issues.

Janis is retired from 26 years on Active and Reserve Duty in the US Army Nurse Corps and is a veteran of both Vietnam and Desert Shield ; Desert Storm. She has some stories to tell, insight, inspiration and feelings to share. We hope to see you in Rochester during her presentation. It’s going to be quite a trip!


Economist & Wells Fargo Consultant Michael Swanson To Address MWFPA Convention

Michael Swanson, an agricultural economist and consultant for Wells Fargo, the largest commercial agricultural lender in the United States, will provide his economic outlook and strategic advice to MWFPA members as our Thursday, November 29th breakfast keynote speaker during this year’s annual convention in Rochester, MN.

Good producers and companies deal well with the changes in the market. The difficulty comes from knowing which changes to respond to and when. What is changing in agriculture today? And, what should a good producer or operator do about it?

Currency exchange rates and biofuels impacts have cycled against agriculture. There are some very important things to understand about their impacts. Michael’s presentation will discuss real choices that make a big difference to the producers and their input suppliers.

Based in Minneapolis, Michael’s responsibilities include analyzing the impact of energy on agriculture and forecasting for key agricultural commodities and livestock sectors. He helps develop credit and risk strategies for Wells Fargo’s customers, and performs macroeconomic and international analysis on agricultural production and agribusiness.

Register now for the convention!

For more on Michael:

House Committee Set To Vote On New Farmworker Visa Program

This week House Judiciary Chairman Bob Goodlatte, R-Va. is planning to move a bill to replace the H-2A farmworker visa program after revising the legislation to address the concerns of immigration hard-liners, according to Agri-Pulse.

The revised version rolls back some planned protections for existing workers who are illegal immigrants.  Under the original version, the new H-2C visa program was scheduled to take effect in two years and provide work authorization to illegal workers in the interim. The new version strips the work authorization language and implements the new program in six months.  

Other provisions in the new version shrink the H-2C program from 500,000 to 450,000 visas and would require employers to provide health insurance to visa holders.

The committee is scheduled to vote on the bill Tuesday together with separate legislation that would require all employers to use the E-Verify system to check the legal status of hires.

MWFPA Convention Breakout Sessions Set

The breakout sessions schedule for the MWFPA annual convention and trade show has now been released. Once again MWFPA has brought together premier industry experts to discuss and educate attendees on today’s important industry topics.

The MWFPA convention is one of the best opportunities of the year to join a gathering of food industry professionals in one place.  It offers a chance to connect directly with your customers in the food manufacturing community and talk face-to-face with decision-makers in the industry.  Don’t wait, register today!

MWFPA To Support “Feast” At Annual Convention

The award-winning Feast! Local Foods Marketplace hosts over 100 exhibitors who show, sample and sell their artisan food products to wholesale buyers during its Friday trade show and to consumers during the Saturday festival taking place December 1-2, 2017 at the Mayo Civic Center in Rochester, MN following the MWFPA annual convention.

This year special entry to the Feast trade show will be granted to MWFPA convention registrants, and Feast exhibitors will be able to attend the MWFPA convention Thursday morning, November 30th free of charge (breakfast, lunch, beer and wine can be accessed for $25).  Feast! attendees who wish to access the MWFPA convention need to fill out a registration form.
For more information, visit or email To keep in touch with the latest updates, ‘like’ the FEAST Local Food Network on Facebook, follow @Local_Feast on Twitter, and use #localFEAST to join the conversation. Feast! Local Foods Marketplace is co-hosted by the Southern Minnesota Initiative Foundation and Renewing the Countryside non-profit organizations and is supported with premiere sponsorship by Mayo Clinic, The McKnight Foundation and the Minnesota Department of Agriculture.

MWFPA Convention Fast Approaching – Booths, Sponsorships Still Available

It’s hard to believe but we are seven weeks away from the Midwest Food Products Association annual convention which is taking place November 28 -30, 2017 at the Mayo Civic Center in Rochester, MN.  This year we are expecting over 900 people to attend the event, 150 exhibitors, several breakout sessions, two receptions, a silent auction and a casino night.

Registrations are coming in steadily and there are a few exhibit booths still available. Sponsorships are available too!

To see a list of sponsorship opportunities, go to the convention website at   Sponsor an event or become a general sponsor.  Your company logo will be on our convention web site and in the bi-monthly MWFPA Bulletin which goes out to over 2000 people around the nation and even the world.  Your company name and logo will also be featured on signage around the convention site. Your company gets a lot of exposure at a reasonable price.

Become a sponsor today and see you in Rochester!

OIG Report Suggests Improvements To FSMA Enforcement

A report from the Office of the Inspector General (OIG) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has concluded that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) fails to adequately conduct or follow up on food-safety inspections required by the 2011 Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA). OIG reportedly found that while FDA is “on track” to meet inspection timeframes for the initial mandate, future inspection timeframes are two years shorter and FDA may not be able to meet them.

The report also stated that FDA did not always take action when it found significant safety violations and that the agency “commonly relied on facilities to voluntarily correct the violations” instead of taking advantage of FSMA administrative tools. FDA “consistently failed to conduct timely followup inspections” to ensure facilities made the necessary corrections, the report noted. In addition, “inaccuracies” in domestic facility data caused FDA to attempt inspections at the facilities of closed companies. According to the OIG report, FDA concurred with the recommendations to improve inspections and follow-up procedures.