NEW Headquarters Hotel | JW Marriott Washington, DC
The Washington Conference is the fresh produce industry’s annual gathering of more than 500 leaders to converge on Capitol Hill and address the industry’s most pressing public policy matters. Attendees will engage in strategic, face-to-face dialogue with key members of Congress, their staff and top regulatory officials.
This year’s United Fresh Washington Conference provides the industry an even greater opportunity to deliver a powerful message to help shape decisions made in Washington that directly impact your business.
New in 2018
United Fresh is introducing several fresh new networking, education and advocacy events this year to keep pace with the ever-changing political climate. Attendees will join industry executives at the NEW Global Trade Forum, two days of Congressional Meetings, the Fresh Festival on Capitol Hill, and the United Fresh & Congressional Friends Afternoon at the Ball Game with the United Fresh Board of Directors. Check out the schedule below for details.
Join hundreds of attendees from every segment of the industry and engage directly with top political and policy experts on the issues of the day in an intimate experience. United Fresh members interact with and learn from fellow industry leaders including grower-shippers, fresh-cut processors, wholesaler-distributors, retail food-service and service providers. The following conference events provide a prime opportunity to make connections within the industry:
One United voice coming together to deliver a determined and clear message to our elected officials is essential to navigating the changing political environment. Join us to deliver a powerful message to help shape decisions made in Washington that directly impact your business.
Hear unique perspectives on the crucial issues impacting your business from policy experts and industry leaders. Breakout sessions will tackle immigration reform, nutrition policy opportunities to increase produce consumption, 2018 Farm Bill and more.
Hear What People are saying
“Well, there is one thing I love more than produce, and that’s politics! This is the perfect trip for me. I’m sure it will be fascinating!”
– Michelle Cortez, Sales Account Manager, Empacadora G.A.B., Inc. (first time attendee)
“We all attend a number of events throughout the year. However, the Washington Conference is the only platform in which we discuss policy in depth and can bring our message directly to members of Congress. We can express the critical nature of their vote and how their decisions directly impact the future of the fresh produce industry”
– Jose Rossignoli, Director, Global Sourcing, Robinson Fresh
“Federal legislation will have a major impact on all of us in the produce industry now and for years to come. We need to talk directly with our lawmakers and government officials to show them how federal policies affect our business.”
– Ron Carkoski, President & CEO, Four Seasons Family of Companies
Schedule of Events
This year’s United Fresh Washington Conference provides you and your industry colleagues the opportunity to deliver a powerful message to help shape decisions made in Washington that directly impact your business. Don’t leave our industry’s future in someone else’s hands – join us September 24-26 in our nation’s capital!
Monday, September 24, 2018
|8:30 am – 11:30 am||Volunteer Leadership Meetings* (various locations)
JW Marriott , Washington, D.C.
*See below for details
|Noon – 5:00 pm
|Global Trade Forum
With trade issues challenging the fresh produce industry around the world, United Fresh hosts its first Global Trade Forum. Join industry executives and government leaders discussing the impact of trade negotiations, disputes and potential solutions that can serve global consumers and producers. From NAFTA negotiations, to North and South hemispheric trade, to exports to and from Asia, take a deep dive into the future of trade in the fresh produce industry.
Inaugural Global Trade Luncheon
Noon – 1:15 pm Inaugural Global Trade Luncheon
With trade issues challenging the fresh produce industry around the world, United Fresh hosts its first Global Trade Forum. Don’t miss keynote speaker, Ted McKinney, Under Secretary for Trade and Foreign Agricultural Affairs, United States Department of Agriculture as he outlines the current state of play.
1:15 pm Networking Break
Industry and Government Insights into NAFTA and Worldwide Trade
Over the next 3 hours join industry executives and government leaders in breakout sessions discussing the impact of trade negotiations, disputes and potential solutions that can serve global consumers and producers. Two deep dive tracks will be offered, focusing on the future of trade in the fresh produce industry within NAFTA or the global marketplace.
2:15 pm Ag Experts Insights on U.S. Trade Policy
3:00 pm Doing Business Globally
Moderator: Robert Guenther, Senior Vice President, Public Policy, United Fresh Produce Association
4:00 pm Forecasting Fresh Market Opportunities
Come back together for an economic outlook section that will provide facts that color the landscape of trade into and out of the United States. Daniel Sumner, the Frank H. Buck, Jr., Professor in the Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics at the University of California, Davis will share his perspectives on the trends likely to shape future trade and answer your burning questions such as: Where will we see more imports? Where might we see more exports? What surprises might be on the horizon?
4:50 pm Closing Remarks
|5:00 pm – 6:30 pm||Celebrate Fresh Opening Reception|
|6:30 pm – 9:00 pm||United FreshPAC Reception & Dinner (Separately Ticketed Event)
National Press Club
Industry leaders come together in this annual advocacy event that raises funds to increase support for key members of Congress, strengthening the produce industry voice on Capitol Hill. Click here to learn more or for more information contact Angela Tiwari firstname.lastname@example.org
Speaker: Bob Woodward, two-time Pulitzer Prize winning Journalist and Author
Tuesday, September 25, 2018
|8:00 am – 10:00 am||Opening General Session Breakfast
The Trump Administration is like no other in recent years, but agricultural challenges continue from the need for a stable, legal workforce to expanding fresh produce access for all Americans. We’ll kick off our conference with an invitation to the Administration’s top agricultural official.
|10:15 am – 11:45 am||Preparing for Our March on Capitol Hill | Breakout Sessions
Following a joint review of key issues for our Congressional visits, attendees can choose a deeper dive on the topics below of greatest interest.
|10:15 am Sessions||
1. Is It Time for a National Foodborne Disease Investigation Board?
Speaker: Dr. Jennifer McEntire, Vice President, Food Safety & Technology, United Fresh Produce Association
2. Writing a New Immigration Bill That Meets Agriculture’s Needs
|11:00 am Sessions||
1. 2018 Farm Bill – What’s Next?
Speaker: Robert Guenther, Senior Vice President, Public Policy, United Fresh Produce Association
2. It’s Time for SNAP to Become a Nutrition Health Program
|Noon – 1:30 pm||General Session Luncheon
As we prepare for Congressional visits this afternoon, we’ll hear from both Republican and Democratic House of Representatives members who provide their take on the broad business of the House today, and how we can maximize our impact on the issues we care about.
Congressional Panel Speakers:
Representative Jimmy Panetta (D-CA), Member, House Agriculture Committee
|2:00 pm||The Power of Fresh Group Photo
Prior to our individual meetings, the industry will gather for our annual group photo in front of the Capitol.
|2:30 pm – 5:00 pm||March on Capitol Hill: U.S. House of Representatives Meetings|
|5:30 pm – 7:00 pm||Fresh Festival on Capitol Hill
Have you ever seen the impact of sharing the fresh bounty of our industry with Members of Congress and key Congressional staff? Back by popular demand, the freshest reception of the year on Capitol Hill features fresh produce sampling by more than 20 member organizations as we bring the Power of Fresh to our VIP customers in the nation’s capital.
|7:00 pm – 9:30 pm||Leadership Alumni Organization Event (Invitation Only; Separately Ticketed Event)|
Wednesday, September 26, 2018
|8:00 am – 9:00 am||General Session Breakfast
This morning we turn our attention to the U.S. Senate, and hear from Senator Heidi Heitkamp about what issues are hot, and what we can expect in our Senate meetings today.
Keynote Speaker: Senator Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND)
|10:00 am – 1:00 pm||March on Capitol Hill: U.S. Senate Meetings|
|2:45 pm – 8:00 pm||United Fresh & Congressional Friends Afternoon at the Ball Game
(Separately ticketed event)
Join the United Fresh Board of Directors and Congressional friends of the produce industry for an afternoon at the ballpark as the Washington Nationals take on the Miami Marlins. Take advantage of this additional networking opportunity at the Nationals Park – celebrating its 10th anniversary as an MLB stadium.
Thursday, September 27, 2018
|8:00 am – 1:00 pm||Board of Directors Meeting|
*Schedule subject to change.
These fees are available through 09/21/2018
|First Time Washington Conference Attendee||$695.00||Members|
|Government/Academia Rate||$250.00||Government & University Employees|
|United Fresh & Congressional Friends Networking Event at the Ball Game||$100.00|
March on Capitol Hill2 Days of Congressional Meetings
- U.S. House of Representatives Meeting: Tuesday, September 25
- U.S. Senate Congressional Meeting: Wednesday, September 26
You are the Power of Fresh! Join the largest grassroots effort of the fresh produce industry as we March on Capitol Hill. This is your time to meet face-to-face with your elected officials and their staff to discuss critical issues to your business and share personal testimony of how actions taken in Washington directly affect you, your community and the produce industry overall.
Attendees will take a small sampling of what product our industry has to offer to our congressional meetings. This is a perfect segway to inviting your congressional leaders and their staff to your facility to see the impact you have locally.
Breakout Education SessionsPreparing for Our March on Capitol Hill
United FreshPAC Reception & DinnerMonday, September 24
hotel & Travelnew 2018 location - JW MARRIOTT WASHINGTON, DC
For the first time, the Washington Conference will be held at the esteemed JW Marriott. Perfectly located in the heart of downtown D.C., on Pennsylvania Avenue, the JW Marriott places you close to all the capital city offers.The JW Marriott is offering a discounted group rate of $309 for conference attendees while supplies last, if booked by August 28, 2018. We recommend securing your housing as soon as possible. Please click here to reserve your hotel room, or contact the hotel directly at 1-800-393-2503.
|The JW Marriott Washington DC is located 3.1 miles from Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport (DCA). Alternatively, Dulles International Airport (IAD) is 26.5 miles and Baltimore/Washington International Airport (BWI) is 34.1 respectively. A variety of ground transportation options are available at the airports.|
United Fresh will work with you to develop an opportunity that is specific to your business needs. To learn more about 2018 sponsorship opportunities contact Angela Tiwari at email@example.com or 202.303.3416.
Volunteer Leadership MeetingsMarket Segment Boards and Expert Policy Councils
Monday, September 24, 2018 | Volunteer Leadership Meetings
|7:30 am – 4:00 pm||Food Safety & Technology Council
National Agricultural Library | USDA | Beltsville, Maryland
Transportation will be provided.
|8:30 am – 11:30 am||Volunteer Leadership Meetings
JW Marriott, Washington, D.C. | various locations
Finance & Business Management Council
Thursday, September 27, 2018
|8:30 am – 1:00 pm||United Fresh Board of Directors|
Advocate of the Year Award
Never has there been a more critical time for the produce industry to come together in Washington, D.C. to experience the Power of Fresh!
For more information and to get engaged, contact Angela Tiwari, Director of Grassroots and Political Action, at 202.303.3416.