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Supermaket guru to lead Fresno Food Expo keynote

FRESNO — A consumer trend analyst known for appearing on NBC News’ Today show, Dr. Oz, The Oprah Winfrey Show, and 20/20 will present a keynote address to kick off the 2017 Fresno Food Expo on July 26.

For more than 25 years, Phil Lempert, aka the “Supermarket Guru,” has kept an eye on rapidly changing environments in the retail and foodservice industries.

“Analyzing consumer food trends and identifying their effect on the retail and foodservice industries has been a passion of mine for many years,” said Phil Lempert. “What better place to talk about consumer behavior and food industry trends than in Central California, where the majority of our food is grown and produced ... the food capital of the world.”

Lempert’s keynote address will center around consumer trends and the new retail environment, focusing in on what Millennials and Generation Z are attracted to, and how Amazon Fresh, Home Delivery Meal Kits and Cellular Agriculture are impacting the marketplace.

This event is open exclusively to registered buyers free of charge, and sponsors and exhibitors of the Expo.

“Being able to attract a world renowned food industry expert like Phil Lempert is a huge win for us.” said Amy Fuentes, Fresno Food Expo Manager. “Not only will his participation attract more retail and foodservice buyers to the Expo, but it will help raise the profile of our region’s thriving food industry, and bring recognition to what we are doing here in food.”

In addition to delivering the keynote address, Lempert will take part in several other activities tied to the two-day regional food show. Lempert will serve on the Buyer’s Choice Award Judging Panel the morning of July 26, later attending Pairings, the Expo’s opening reception open exclusively to attending buyers and sponsors of the Expo, where he will announce the 2017 Buyer’s Choice Award first, second and third place winners. Lastly, Lempert will walk the Expo’s Business-to-Business Tradeshow on July 27, interacting with participating Central California food and beverage companies participating in this year’s Expo.

The keynote delivered by Lempert is part of the Expo’s expanded platform, which aims to foster business growth opportunities for participating Central California food and beverage companies year-round. As part of this expanded platform, the Expo kicked off their official Exhibitor Training Series last month with New York Times and USA Today’s best-selling author, Gregg Lederman, who spoke to participating companies about how the Essential Habits of Trusted Leaders.

This series will resume with three additional trainings offered to all participating sponsors and exhibitors of the Expo, including:

— “From the Factory to Store Shelves,” on May 9, featuring decision-making buyers Roland Harmon (senior sourcing director of Walmart), Mark Ford (president of JD Food) and Craig Saladino (president of Saladino’s Foodservice).

— “Be Prepared! Food Safety & Business Acquisitions,” May 18, featuring industry experts from Der Manouel Insurance Group, Baker Peterson Franklin, and Landsberg Orora

— “Branding in the New Digital Era,” June 1, featuring industry experts from MJR Creative Group and Meza Films

The Fresno Food Expo will take place July 26- 27. The main trade show portion of the Expo will take place July 27, followed by the public celebration, Expolicious, where the public can purchase a ticket to attend. An anticipated 150 exhibitors and 950 key pre-qualified, domestic and international buyers expected to participate.

Registration forms and additional information for exhibitors and buyers are available at Tickets to Expolicious will go on sale at the end of May for $50.

Since 2011, the Expo has introduced 305 different food and beverage companies to new customers and hosted 2,680 different qualified buyers, including over 100 strategically recruited international buyers.

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