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Last week, I wrote about evolution and how I feel this theory also applies to organizations. This morning, FPSA Chairman, Brian Perkins announced that FPSA will now be the Food Production Solutions Association, with our new tagline, Leading Innovation in Food Production. This is more than just a simple name change. In addition to updating our name and logo, FPSA is also adding new membership categories to create new pathways for collaboration among all members and end-users. That could be in our Executive Exchange & Conference where I’m at right now, or the Fall Operations Conference we’ll be putting on September 23-25 at the Hilton President Hotel in Kansas City, or any number of future events.

What it really comes down is to creating events, and other products and services that unite food manufacturers with other participants in the value chain, be they OEM’s engineering firms or other service providers, united by a common goal of producing food safely and more efficiently for the good of all.

While FPSA is still a proud co-owner of the EATS tradeshow (Equipment Automation Technology Show), our partner Messe Frankfurt has shown itself to be a great show organizer, freeing us up to better focus on content development and leverage the expertise of our member companies.

I’m excited about this change. The last time we had such a shift was in the 2006 merger of FPMA (Food Processing Machinery Association) and IAFIS (International Association of Food Industry Suppliers) that formed FPSA. FPMA was strong in meat, prepared foods and bakery, while IAFIS was stronger in dairy, beverage and pharmaceuticals. Coming together made all the sense in the world and yet change is not easy for most. It would take some time before members and staff adopted a new culture and mission but ultimately there would be tremendous benefits including the creation of our show, the FIT Program, our Councils and Networks, as well as many more. I expect the new FPSA will generate even more new programs that bring value to the industry.

FPSA members can expect to hear from us soon. We’re looking for input to see how we can better serve you. Of course, you don’t need to wait for a survey from us. I’m always here and would love the chance to discuss any ideas you might have. Who knows? Maybe a brief chat could generate the next big idea that some FPSA staffer writes about 10 years down the road. I hope so!

Andy Drennan, FPSA SVP