Supply chain relationships to be discussed at Alliance Summit

Registration open through May 2

April 18, 2016 – Two representatives of the restaurant and retail communities will take the stage at the 2016 Animal Agriculture Alliance Stakeholders Summit to share their perspectives on how the animal agriculture industry can engage more effectively throughout the supply chain. The Summit will be held May 5-6, 2016 in Arlington, Va.

This year’s Summit, themed “Securing Animal Agriculture’s Future: Action, Please!”, will focus on securing a bright future for animal agriculture by finding solutions to the challenges facing the industry today. Attendees will hear from thought-provoking speakers, participate in engaging discussions, and leave with actionable ideas that they can immediately implement on their farms or in their businesses. Registration for the event is open through May 2.

The “Supply Channel Insights: How Can Animal Agriculture Provide Solutions to Retail Challenges?” panel will feature:

David Fikes, vice president, consumer/community affairs and communications, Food Marketing Institute. In his role, Fikes is responsible for consumer research, animal welfare issues and overcoming the contemporary challenges of communication for the Food Marketing Institute, the trade association for supermarkets, grocery stores and all venues of food retail. His position allows him to act upon his conviction that humans have a right to food and consumers have a right to safety, information and choice. Prior to joining FMI, Fikes served as the director of communication for the American Frozen Food Institute.

Steven Potts, campus general manager, Levy Restaurant Group/Georgia World Congress Center.  Potts’ primary role is to oversee all aspects of sales, operations, purchasing, accounting and human resources for all Levy Restaurant Group partnerships associated with the Georgia World Congress Center. Before joining Levy in 2012, Potts spent over 23 years with Gaylord Hotels, beginning his career in the In Room Dining department at the Opryland Hotel and working in a variety of positions in the restaurant, banquet and conventions/catering areas.

“Restaurant and retail leaders are a critical audience that the Alliance and our members are always working to engage in discussions about animal care,” said Kay Johnson Smith, Alliance president and CEO. “It is our responsibility as an industry to make sure our supply channel partners have all of the resources they need about animal agriculture to respond to questions from consumers and make sound sourcing policy decisions. We’re excited to have a session at our Summit covering this topic and are sure our attendees will gain a fresh perspective and leave with several new ideas to take their supply channel engagement efforts to a new level.”

The Stakeholders Summit is a one-of-a-kind conference attended by a diverse group of decision makers, including representatives from farms, ranches, food processors, allied industry, restaurants, grocery stores, legislatures, universities, and government agencies.

Be sure to check the Alliance website for the most up-to-date Summit information. You can also follow the hashtag #AAA16 for periodic updates about the event. For general questions about the Summit, please contact or call (703) 562-5160.


Registration for the one-and-a-half day event is $425 for Alliance members, $475 for non-members and $375 for those in government or academia. Members of the media receive complimentary registration and should contact Hannah Thompson at for instructions on how to register. Registration materials and full event schedule can be found at

This year’s Summit will be held at the Westin Arlington Gateway in Arlington, Va. For more information, visit the hotel’s website or call 1-888-627-7076.

The 2016 Summit is approved for 10 American Registry of Professional Animal Scientists CEU’s. ARPAS members in attendance can obtain this credit using the ARPAS website (

Refer a Friend:

Help us spread the word about Summit! If you refer a friend to attend the 2016 Stakeholders Summit who has never attended a previous Stakeholders Summit and they list your name as their recommender when they register for the event, you’ll both be entered in a drawing to win a $100 gift card! Each referral will count as one entry and there is no limit on the number of entries for referrers. We will give away two $100 gift cards at the 2016 Stakeholders Summit – one drawing for referrers and one drawing for those who were referred. All registrations with a referral listed made until online registration closes on May 2 will be entered. Must be present at the 2016 Stakeholders Summit to claim your gift card.

Get involved:

Show your support for the Alliance’s outreach efforts by becoming an official Summit sponsor today! For a complete listing of Summit sponsors or to watch video recordings from the 2015 Summit please visit For more information on sponsorship opportunities, contact Allyson Jones-Brimmer at

Current 2016 sponsors include: U.S. Poultry & Egg Association, Meatingplace, Farm Journal Media, Watt Global Media, Farm Credit, American Feed Industry Association, National Pork Board, National Cattleman’s Beef Association, Alltech, Zoetis, Diamond V, Charleston|Orwig, National Pork Producers Council, Merck Animal Health, Smithfield, Provimi, Bayer Animal Health, PotashCorp, Seaboard Foods, Iowa Soybean Association, Aviagen, Cattle Empire, United Soybean Board, Elanco Animal Health, Council for Biotechnology Information/GMO Answers, The National Turkey Federation’s 20 by 2020 Project, United Egg Producers, Kemin Industries, American Veal Association, Cobb-Vantress, GNP Company, Agri Beef Co., National Chicken Council, North Carolina Farm Bureau Federation, Dairy MAX, Live Oak Bank, Millennium Research Inc., Eggland’s Best and the Food Industry Environmental Network.

In addition to sponsoring the Summit, companies, associations and individuals can support the Alliance’s outreach and engagement efforts by donating to the Silent Auction. Proceeds from the 2016 Silent Auction at the Summit will support the Alliance’s College Aggies Online (CAO) program. CAO helps train the next generation of leaders in agriculture by challenging students to go out of their comfort zone to engage online and on campus about current and emerging issues facing agriculture. Previous auction donations have included goods and services such as artwork, quilts, jewelry, craft items, model farm equipment, celebrity autographed items, gift baskets, gift certificates, food items, wine and sporting or entertainment event tickets. To support CAO through the Silent Auction, contact Allyson Jones-Brimmer at

About the Alliance:

The Animal Agriculture Alliance is an industry-united, nonprofit organization that helps bridge the communication gap between farm and fork. We connect key food industry stakeholders to arm them with responses to emerging issues. We engage food chain influencers and promote consumer choice by helping them better understand modern animal agriculture. We protect by exposing those who threaten our nation’s food security with damaging misinformation.
Find the Alliance on Facebook and Twitter.

Category: Press Releases

Tag: Restaurant/Retail, Stakeholders Summit,