SOURCE: Southern California Institute of Food Technologists

December 05, 2006 17:23 ET

IFT President Dennis Heldman Scheduled to Speak at '07 Food Industry Conference

POMONA, CA -- (MARKET WIRE) -- December 5, 2006 -- The Southern California Institute of Food Technologists (SCIFTS) today announced that Dennis Heldman has accepted an invitation to be the keynote speaker for its 2007 Food Industry Conference. The newly appointed president of the Institute of Food Technologists will be making a presentation about alternative processes for food preservation and improved product quality.

The event will be held at Cal Poly Pomona on Tuesday, February 13, 2007 and will mark the institute's 20 years of hosting this unique collaboration among industry executives, suppliers, educators and students. The learning-conference theme will focus on emerging trends within the industry, including the proliferation of functional foods.

"Our goal this year is to attract top-shelf speakers and salient learning opportunities," stated Martin Sancho-Madriz, event chairman and program director of the host Food Science and Technology Program at Cal Poly. "With Mr. Heldman keynoting, along with other notables such as Biothera Vice President Don Cox speaking about functional food additives that improve the human immune system, we've been able to secure industry experts that our constituency will appreciate and enjoy."

Along with the speakers and discussion panels, the day will be highlighted with a product development competition that addresses the epidemic of childhood obesity and how new California legislation is dealing with this important issue. Teams representing Chapman University, Cal State University Northridge, Cal State L.A., and Long Beach State are among those planning to compete. "The teams are really gearing up for this because it's a perfect way for them to demonstrate the skills they have acquired from classroom and laboratory experiences," said Maria Botero Omary, event co-chair. "The monetary awards and recognition are nice, but the real incentive is for these young people to mingle and engage with industry veterans."

The day's agenda will be supplemented with various culinary tasting and entertainment including a presentation by Esencia Flamenco. The flamenco troupe, directed by Sarah Parra, is dedicated to promoting the art of this colorful cultural dance throughout the region. "We want our attendees to be educated, intrigued, enjoy some libations and be entertained," Sancho-Madriz noted. "The 20th anniversary conference is going to be the best ever because we want our constituency to realize this should be an annual must-attend event."


As one of the founding organization's largest group of constituents, the Southern California section of IFT boasts members from seven counties. IFT, the national organization, was founded in 1939 as a non-profit society. Today, this proactive scientific and educational organization has expanded to over 23,000 members working in food science, technology, nutrition and related professions in industry, academia and government. As the authoritative voice of food science and technology, IFT promotes sound science for the public discussion of food.

Contact Information

  • Agency Contact:
    Marc Villarreal
    Marcomm Associates
    Email Contact

    Company Contact:
    Martin Sancho-Madriz
    Cal Poly Pomona
    (909) 869-2164
    Email Contact