Focus: associations

AFFI Marks 70 Years of Frozen Food Sales During its Western Frozen Food Convention at the Sheraton San Diego (CA) Hotel & Marina recently, the American Frozen Food Institute (AFFI) paid tribute to the 70th anniversary of frozen foods going on sale to consumers.

Clarence Birdseye introduced the first line of frozen foods March 6, 1930, at a retail store in Springfield MA. Besides being the first to freeze food in a package for sale directly to the consumer, Birdseye also is credited with being the first to realize the importance of freezing food rapidly.

Along with the anniversary celebration, Chris Matthews, host of CNBC's news show "Hardball with Chris Matthews," served as keynote speaker at the convention's opening breakfast.

Agriculture Department Honors IARW, WFLO The International Association of Refrigerated Warehouses (IARW) and World Food Logistics Organization (WFLO) have been recognized for their partnership in the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Foreign Agricultural Service's Cold Chain Project for Emerging Markets. An award was presented by Timothy Galvin, USDA FAS administrator, to IARW President Bill Hudson.

The Cold Chain Project involves introducing leading food industry executives in emerging-market nations to available technical resources addressing food safety issues, loss of product quality, and economic losses in food production/distribution. IARW and WFLO have been involved in programs underway in Thailand, Philippines, Brazil, Dominican Republic, China, Malaysia, Vietnam, and South Africa. Mexico, Honduras, El Salvador, and Guatemala are scheduled to be included in the project in 2000.

ATA Urges Government Action on Fuel Crisis The American Trucking Associations (ATA) has renewed its call for emergency government action to halt the diesel fuel price crisis across the United States.

Walter B McCormick Jr, president of ATA, said the price of fuel is the "Achilles heel" for the industry. He said, "A key reason trucking is the dominant mode of transportation in this country is because it is affordable. We are affordable because of razor-thin profit margins of 2% to 4%. If that moves even slightly, many are forced out of business. Most trucking companies can't afford to absorb the diesel cost and don't have the ability in a highly competitive market to raise prices to cover the diesel costs. Out-of-control fuel prices-such as this year's 53% increase from 1999-can quickly wipe out that margin."

He said motor carriers are asking for three actions by the federal government to end the fuel crisis. They include opening the Strategic Petroleum Reserve to help drive prices down, asking the government to convince the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries that stable and reasonable prices are in everyone's best interest, and requesting that the US Attorney General commence an investigation into any illegal diesel price gouging and profiteering.

Arizona Trucking Group Partners with ITS To help strengthen trucking affiliations in the West, Arizona Motor Transport Association is permanently moving its annual truck show site to Las Vegas NV as an official partner with the International Trucking Show.

The 500-member AMTA, which has held its trucking show in Phoenix AZ since 1987, also will schedule its yearly board of directors meeting to coincide with the ITS exhibition, scheduled for June 28-30, 2000, at the Las Vegas Convention Center.

For more information about the 39th annual ITS, contact Roger Sherrard, President, Independent Trade Show Management, 1155 Chess Dr #102, Foster City CA 94404; phone 800-227-5992; or e-mail [email protected]

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