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    Dufour nationally supplies artisanal hors d’oeuvres and other savories as well as ready-to-bake tart shells, all-butter puff pastry, and now, a plant-based dough from its plant in the South Bronx. In this episode, Megan Rooney, Program Development Manager at SFA, speaks with Carla Krasner, co-founder and co-owner at Dufour Pastry Kitchens, about running a women-owned company since 1985, respecting tradition while being open to change, and transitioning from a career in music to one in food.

    Megan Rooney
    Thursday, December 1 at 1pm ET
    “There’s no success without a successor,” says Harry T. Jones – and his experience proves it. It’s crucial to put a plan in place for the next phase of your business, and that plan should be flexible, transparent, and true to your values. In this session, you’ll learn about the potential pitfalls – and remedies – in order to build your own plan for succession success.

    Megan Rooney
    Thursday, December 8 at 1pm ET
    In this insightful webinar, Rachel Saul, Co-Founder and Chief Strategist of the award-winning agency Chelsea & Rachel Co, will share five of the most common pitfalls food brands encounter when starting a direct to consumer business. Rachel will share tactics, strategies, and real success stories brands have taken up to 25x their DTC revenue and nom nom their competition.

    Caroline Cotto is co-founder and COO of Renewal Mill, an upcycled food company that works with byproducts from plant-based milk such as soybean pulp, oat pulp, and almond pulp, that are dried and milled to produce ingredients that are rich in nutrients. In this Spill & Dish podcast episode, Julie Gallagher, director of content at SFA, talks with Cotto about the history of upcycling, collaborations with other women-owned brands, and how specialty food businesses can get involved in the space.

    Megan Rooney
    Thursday, December 15 at 1pm ET
    In this introductory session, Felice Thorpe, a consulting sales director with deep experience in specialty foods, will get you ready to sell. You’ll learn how to set goals through SWOT analysis and KPI’s, build a sales funnel, understand sales channels, and craft an elevator pitch, talking points and point-of-sale materials. 

    Megan Rooney
    Thursday, November 17 at 1pm ET
    Launching your brand on Amazon is like a road trip for your company! For that reason, the most successful brands do extraordinary preparation before ever arriving at Amazon’s door. They invest the time and resources required to understand the selling platform, unit economics, content needs, optimal product and pack configurations, and other best practices that are fundamental to winning on Amazon. This masterclass will guide you through the components of your Amazon strategy in order to chart a smart course and avoid bumps in the road for a successful journey.

    Paula Lambert is the founder and owner of Mozzarella Company, a Dallas-based artisan cheese shop, and author of many cheese-related books including The Cheese Lover’s Cookbook and Guide. In this episode, George Hajjar, associate editor at SFA, chats with Lambert about the process of making and innovating cheese flavors, growing her business, and leading annual trips to Europe.

    Megan Rooney
    Thursday, November 10 at 1pm ET
    When you sell through retailers, you will likely pay them to promote your products to their customers – that’s trade spend. In this webinar, expert John Maggiore will discuss why trade spend is important, what components to consider, and how to spend your allocated dollars in the most effective ways. Bring your questions!

    The fall issue of Specialty Food features profiles of members of SFA’s 12 Under 35: Breakout Talent to Watch list and highlights from Today’s Specialty Food Consumer research.
    This holiday-themed edition also includes Buyers’ Picks for holiday confections, a look at festive appetizers in “Category Spotlight: Home for the Holidays,” and pairing ideas in “Cheers to Cheese and Beer.”
    It also features the Specialty Food Maker section that includes topics and business news to help producers and suppliers build their operations to stay prepared for challenges, like “Maker Mix” including the article “How to Talk to Co-Manufacturers About Your Product,” “Maker Q&A: Working With Co-Manufacturers,” and “Strengthening Organic Enforcement: What You Need to Know.”
    Read it today!

    Ray and Monique Dukes, partners in business and life, run Rosella Baked Goods, maker of Sweet Potato Pancake Mix, Stone Ground Grits, Seafood Breader, and Buttercream Pancake Mix. In this Spill & Dish episode, Julie Gallagher, director of content at the SFA, speaks with Ray and Monique about scaling supply chain hurdles, their experience with supplier diversity programs, and the famous sweet potato hush puppies that started it all.

    Alexandra Groezinger is president of Groezinger Provisions Inc., the owner and USDA facility which produces Alexian Pate products, including pates, terrines, and mousses, and half of a mother/daughter duo that runs the company. In this episode, Julie Gallagher, content director at SFA, talks to Groezinger about how she is managing double-digit price increases, meeting “Christmas-on-steroids” type demand, and the benefits of a woman-owned certification.

    Megan Rooney
    Tuesday, November 1 at 1pm ET
    Using Third Party Certifications and Logos, such as certifications for Non-GMO Project Verified and Gluten Free Certifying Organization seals or more generic icons for Non-GMO, Keto, or Paleo or trademarks for high value proprietary ingredients on your food labels can help increase sales for your products. However, the dos and don’ts are often governed by licensing agreements, standard terms and conditions, or may present a risk of trademark infringement. Join attorney Jeni Lamb Rogers as she goes over key terms in licensing agreements and watch outs as you consider use of third party certifications, logos, and icons on your products. 

    Megan Rooney
    Thursday, October 13 at 1pm ET
    Dave Hirschkop understands what it takes to build a superstar specialty food brand – he’s done it himself, with Dave’s Gourmet. His fascination with the CEO mindset has led him to a new passion: distilling the wisdom of his peers to help the SFA community succeed. He’s interviewed dozens of CEOs and founders of CPG companies from $5 million to $100+ million in revenue, and in this webinar, he’ll share what he’s learned about what you really need to get right and the mistakes you really need to avoid. 

    Kristie Middleton is vice president of business development for Rebellyous Foods, a company that sells patties, nuggets, and tenders that cook just like breaded chicken products. She’s spent the last 20 years moving plant-based foods from the extreme to the mainstream. In this Spill & Dish podcast episode, Megan Rooney, education manager, chats with Middleton about the successful rebrand of Seattle Food Tech to Rebellyous Foods, selling to foodservice, and pricing so that plant-based is accessible to all.

    Megan Rooney
    Thursday, September 15 at 1pm ET
    How is your company faring right now? As consumer purchasing power is affected by inflation, specialty food companies need to review their current financials, their goals, and their sales and marketing strategy.
    Join Jack Acree, EVP at Saffron Road Foods, and Brock Barton, VP of Finance at King Arthur Baking Company for a deep dive into the issues, including pricing, trade spend, distribution and keeping your company's finances sound. Bring your questions to this interactive discussion.

    Megan Rooney
    Thursday, September 1 at 1pm ET
    On August 9, 2022, USDA published long anticipated proposed revisions to the organic livestock and poultry requirements. Join Attorney Jeni Lamb Rogers as she provides a summary of the rule and points of interest for SFA members to consider before the close of the public comment period on October 11, 2022. 

    Megan Rooney
    Thursday, October 20 at 1pm ET
    Understanding costs and pricing in this business is fundamental to profitability, success, and fluency in customer discussions.  Jonathan Milo Leal, a 20-year manufacturer still working in the trenches on a daily basis, and a long-time teacher of this class for the SFA, will walk you through the numbers from start to finish, and share real-world information and advice. You’ll learn how pricing works, the generally accepted standards for margins, and how to create practical, effective price sheets for wholesale, distributors, and more.  Come prepared for some hands-on math!

    Megan Rooney
    Thursday, October 27 at 1pm ET
    How effectively does your packaging fight for that essential first glance? And once it's got a grip on those eyeballs, how efficiently does it deliver a knockout pitch? To prime your packaging for peak performance, Victoria Ho of Shera CPG will dive into strategic principles, market data, real-life case studies, and industry best practices to empower you with an actionable, innovative toolbox that you can customize to your brand’s current growth stage in anticipation of the next. 
    Whether you’re just breaking ground on design concepts, focused on strengthening your brand messaging, or building stamina for a milestone brand refresh, she’ll discuss how to optimize your packaging as the secret sauce behind your brand. 

    Chitra Agrawal, founder of Brooklyn Delhi, launched the Indian condiment and sauce brand eight years ago with the help of her now-husband, food packaging designer Ben Garthus. In this Spill & Dish episode, Julie Gallagher, SFA’s director of content, chats with Agrawal about the approachability of the brand, how she scales supply chain hurdles, and a key foodservice partnership that's placed her tomato achaar in over a million U.S households.

    SFA members--see below for the August edition of The Digestif, a monthly digest of upcoming SFA events, programs, and deadlines. 

    Shows & Events
    2023 Winter Fancy Food Show 
    The Show will take place at the Las Vegas Convention Center’s newer West Hall on January 15-17, 2023. You can’t afford to miss this Show! Fancy Food Shows are recognized throughout the Specialty Food & Beverage Industry as an effective and fun way to:  
    Identify new products and services to grow your business  Stay ahead of the latest consumer trends   Learn from industry leaders, experts, and pioneers  Establish and strengthen business relationships  Need exhibiting information? Click here. Interested in staying up to date with SFA Events? - Click here. 

    Member Benefits & Updates
    Are You Taking Full Advantage of Your SFA Membership?
    As an SFA Member, you have access to a global community of makers, retailers, buyers, distributors, brokers, suppliers, and other industry professionals who can help your business succeed. And, since SFA Membership is company-wide, everyone in your organization can take advantage of the business-building opportunities, savings programs, and industry connections we offer. Click here to view a list of the most popular membership benefits or contact our Membership Department to speak with someone who can help you make the most of your membership. 

    Products, Resources & Tools
    SFA Product Marketplace Best Practices Webinar 
    We recently hosted a webinar chock full of tips, tricks, and best practices for using the SFA Product Marketplace to grow your business. If you missed the webinar or want to share this resource with colleagues, click here to view it anytime!  
    Learning Center
    Find resources including directories of co-manufacturers, business service companies, distributors, and more.
    Online Education 
    With three different webinar series, SFA has something for you. Interested in the basics? Check out Maker Prep. Looking for the latest on rules and regulations? Regulatory Update can help. Curious about pricing, trends, and issues affecting business? In the Know has got you covered.
    Learn about our August Maker Prep offerings here. Regulatory Update and In the Know will be on hiatus this month, but you can view recent webinars from these series on demand in our Learning Center. Each webinar includes slides and a recording, so you can watch whenever is best for you.

    News & Research Updates
    The State of the Specialty Food Industry, 2022-2023 Edition
    The State of the Specialty Food Industry and 10-Year Category Tracking and Forecasts helps you make data-driven decisions for your business. Purchase this comprehensive research that explores where the market is today and the opportunities and challenges it faces. SFA Members get a discounted price of $499.  Click here to purchase.

    Community Sharing & Observances
    Have an Instagram? Let's follow each other. Every Monday SFA Members participate in #SFAMemberMonday. Tag @specialtyfoodassociation and hashtag #SFAMemberMonday on your Instagram post or story, and we'll repost you on our Instagram story! 
    SFA Members: Tell Us Your Story
    Every Specialty Food Association member has a unique story, set of challenges, and successes to celebrate. And we want to hear about it!
    We’re collecting our members’ stories to share on our Community Hub and in other content platforms like SFA News Daily, the SFA Feed app, or the SFA’s podcast, Spill & Dish.
    Help others by sharing your experiences in the specialty food industry! To participate, sign into the Community Hub and then go here to answer some brief questions. 
    Diversity, Equity & Inclusion
    August is National Civility Month. Observances: International Day of the World’s Indigenous People (9), World Humanitarian Day (19), Senior Citizens Day (21), American Business Women’s Day (22), and Women’s Equality Day (26).  

    Small Bites
    With so much information coming at us from screens of all sizes, we've packaged bite-size bits of information that can be easily consumed. Click below for SFA offerings.

    product marketplace
    Product Marketplace: SFA’s Product Marketplace makes discovering, networking, and connecting so easy. Learn about this exciting Member benefit.

    learning center
    Weekly Webinars: Created to help our Members build their businesses, learn from experts, and create long-term solutions

    news & trends
    SFA Feed: An industry newsfeed app that puts the latest from across specialty food right on your mobile device.

    SFA Community Hub: Explore, ask questions, and connect with others in the specialty food industry.

    Virtual Share Groups: Spaces for mentorship, shared resources, and connections needed to support Members.

    product marketplace
    Diversity, Equity & Inclusion: Our product marketplace makes it easy to filter & find minority-owned businesses.  

    Megan Rooney
    With one month left of summer, we have the perfect way to spend your time. Check out two new products in our Learning Center from the Summer Fancy Food Show! Each package is $99 for members, $199 for non-members, and includes slides and recordings, so you can learn whenever, wherever! Please follow the links below to learn more and register!
    Maker Space: https://community.specialtyfood.com/store/product/254-maker-space-sessions-at-summer-fancy-food-show-2022/ Basics: https://community.specialtyfood.com/store/product/253-the-basics-the-business-of-specialty-food/

    Along with his two brothers, Emilio Mignucci spearheaded the second generation of Di Bruno Bros., a Philadelphia-based family-owned specialty food market. After original owners Danny and Joe Di Bruno let the younger generation take over, Mignucci was tasked with bringing the market to the present age, updating pricing strategies, championing ecommerce, and anticipating expansion. In this episode of SFA’s Spill and Dish podcast, George Hajjar, associate editor, talks with Mignucci about the store’s reverence toward its humble roots, and the struggles and joys involved in growing the business.

    Megan Rooney
    Thursday, September 29 at 1pm ET
    Silicon Valley-based Mattson Chief Innovation Officer Barb Stuckey will share some of the secrets of their 44+ years of success in developing and commercializing new products. From conceptual alignment to commercial plant trials, you'll better understand and be able to anticipate the challenges along the path from idea to market.

    Megan Rooney
    Thursday, September 8 at 1pm ET
    Whether you are a manufacturer, co-packer, or company working with these service providers, understanding the intellectual property protections and motivations of each party can illuminate the best practices to follow. This presentation will provide you with the knowledge behind patenting and trade secrets. You’ll learn the answers to the questions: Are both forms of intellectual property protection possible? Is one preferred over the other? And how can each be balanced to allow for the best strategic partnerships for all those involved?

    Consultant Lin Jiang’s grueling work schedule left her longing for the taste and sustenance of the traditional Chinese dessert that her mother made for her at breakfast time as a young girl in China. In this episode of SFA's Spill & Dish, Julie Gallagher, SFA’s director of content, talks with Jiang about how her take on her mother’s black sesame porridge grew from a worktime snack to a convenient specialty that will soon be available in every Whole Foods Market in the nation.

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