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Concerns about the recent hybrid influenza outbreak affecting countries around the globe prompted the Food Marketing Institute (FMI) to temporarily pull the plug on its Future Connect and MARKETECHNICS events scheduled to take place next week, May 6 through May 8, at the Dallas Convention Center and the Dallas Hyatt Regency. Show organizers had estimated that about 3,500 food retailers, wholesalers, and suppliers would have attended the event, a rescheduled date for which remained to be seen at press time.
“Our industry’s leaders must be in their communities, actively engaged in a time of potential crisis,” said Leslie G. Sarasin, FMI President and CEO. “The increased urgency of the alerts from health officials and the guidance of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Dallas County Department of Health and Human Services confirmed our decision to not host a large gathering where attendees would be in close proximity. We seek to support their recommended precautions and prevention steps and would not want to contribute to spread of the virus in any way.”
Sarasin said the trade group “agonized over this difficult and critical decision,” but believed that the top priority of U.S. food retailers, wholesalers and suppliers “is to look out for the health and safety of their customers, employees and the communities they serve across the country and around the globe.”
FMI is evaluating its options for rescheduling the events and plans to communicate details accordingly as soon as possible.
For additional information, visit fmi.org.