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As the food industry association, FMI works with and on behalf of the entire industry to advance a safer, healthier and more efficient consumer food supply chain. For food retailers, wholesalers and suppliers of all types and sizes, FMI leverages expertise to advocate, collaborate, educate and support the food retail industry efforts to feed families and enrich lives.

At the Energy & Store Development (ESD) Conference more than 600 vice presidents, directors and managers in energy, refrigeration, and store development gather to learn from the best in the food retail industry about new refrigeration technologies, expanded energy resources and innovative store designs.

Target Audience

Attendees include food retail and wholesale executives and suppliers/service providers with responsibility for:
Store planning and design
Utility cost control
Energy Management
Equipment purchasing

Education Program

The ESD Conference education program consists of both general sessions and concurrent breakouts. Most sessions are 45 minutes in length.

General sessions are typically designed to address broad industry topics that appeal to a wide cross-section of the audience, such as:
Industry/consumer/market trends
Store format and design trends
Sustainability/resource conservation
Technology and innovation trends
Regulatory/compliance issues
Connection between store design and energy and refrigeration systems

The concurrent breakout sessions are organized into tracks focused on sectors of the audience: energy, refrigeration and store design. Topic areas often include:
Energy management
Utilities cost control
Facilities management
Store design, formats and merchandising

Presentation Format & Presenters

Education sessions may be presented in a number of formats. Research has shown that adults learn best in settings where they are able to participate actively, relate the new information or techniques to their experiences, and practice new skills. Preference will be given to proposals that incorporate these components, including:
  • Case Study (presenter discusses a real-life problem and invites audience participation)
  • Structured Discussion (presentation(s) with discussion throughout the session)
  • Interactive lecture with polling and Q&A
  • Panel Discussion (moderated discussion by panel members)
  • Town Hall (short 10-15 minute presentation at the beginning followed by group discussion)
  • Idea Exchange (moderator leads a discussion among participants; different tables can discuss different topics)
  • Buzz Groups (participants are divided into small groups and given a specific task to complete)

Education sessions may be delivered by one presenter, co-presenters or a panel. While FMI welcomes presentation proposals from the manufacturer and service provider communities, preference will be given to those that provide a balanced view and include retail presenters. Please note that any speakers listed/proposed must have already agreed to speak in the session.

Proposal Review, Selection and Notification Process

Deadline: proposals must be submitted by April 24, 2020 using this online Abstract Management System.

Proposals must include:
  • Full contact details including phone number and email address
  • Presenter bio(s)
  • Contact information for all confirmed presenters
  • 3-4 learning objectives
  • Selected topic and presentation method
  • Summary and full description of content

Please Note: In the case of submitted proposals speaker(s) will be responsible for their own travel and registration.

Review criteria:
Proposals will be reviewed by the members of the Energy & Store Development Committee and FMI staff according to the following criteria:
  • Timeliness and relevance of subject matter
  • Practical application and take-aways
  • Real-life case studies in the food retail setting
  • Content that meets the advanced educational needs of attendees
  • Originality (cutting-edge content not previously presented)
  • Qualifications and expertise of presenter(s)
  • Comprehensiveness and value of presentation objectives
  • Content that is free of commercialism and/or product bias
A combination of sessions identified through the presentation proposal system and sessions developed by the ESD Committee will be used to build the ESD Conference education program.

Notification: Presenters will be notified ONLY if they are accepted to speak on the program.

COVID-19: We have been and will continue to pay close attention to this ever-changing situation in the U.S. At this time we plan to continue with this fall event but are committed to your health and safety. We welcome proposal submissions for the conference and will work to keep our conference website updated with any COVID-19 information pertinent to the event status. We appreciate your patience during this time and thank you for your support of this event.

For more information, please contact
Rebecca Daniels at 202-220-0670 |

Log in to the Abstract ScoreCard

Questions? Organizer: Rebecca Janelle Daniels -