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I arrived today in beautiful San Diego for the 2013 United Fresh Produce Association Conference. Tonight an opening party will be held on the USS Midway before the conference gets into full swing tomorrow.
This year's main attraction may very well be the opening breakfast with remarks from Whole Foods Market co-CEO Walter Robb on what produce customers value most. In addition to special educational seminars on Wednesday and Thursday, there will also be sessions on the show floor of particular interest to supermarkets, including an update on the Produce Traceability Initiative with Wal-Mart's senior director of produce and floral and a discussion of merchandising strategies with some of this year's Retail Produce Manager Award winners.
On Friday, United Fresh will hold its first post-show Produce & Merchandising Conference. I look forward to learning about ways the industry can target certain demographic groups, including the country's growing Hispanic population and Generation Z.