Expo East Briefs

In a session titled, “2,4-D: What it Means for GMO Labeling,” several speakers educated listeners on new genetically modified, pesticide-tolerant corn and soy, which had just been approved by regulators days prior. They described the dangers this decision could pose to public health, and also provided updates on efforts to pass genetically modified food labeling laws in various states.

  WholeFoods Publisher Heather Wainer (left) and President Howard Wainer (right) present the magazine’s 20th annual Retailer of the Year Award to GreenAcres Market of Wichita, KS. Shannon Hoffmann of GreenAcres Market (center) accepted the award.

Changes to the National Organic Standards Board (NOSB) were up for discussion at an “Organic Regulatory Update” that featured Miles McEvoy of the National Organic Program and other panelists. The 2017 “sunset review” of allowable organic materials will see over 200 currently exempted materials go up for review. One key change that was noted: NOSB can no longer make substantive policy changes on the fly at meetings without further public input.

At “Improving Mitochondrial Function,” Michael Murray, N.D., first detailed the basics on the role of mitochondria in cellular health and longevity. Then, he provided his recommendations on supporting their function through a bioflavonoid rich diet and the use of supplements like quercetin and PQQ.

Twinlab CEO Tom Tolworthy, during a celebration and cocktail hour at his company’s booth, spoke about his company’s transition to employee ownership and its acquisition by the newly formed Twinlab Consolidation Corp.: “We promise to serve the industry in a way you’ve never seen before.”

At a session entitled, “The D-Lightful Vitamin D for Good Health,” sponsored by Carlson Labs, Michael Holick Ph.D., M.D., of Boston University Medical Center, asked “What’s the big deal about D deficiency? Rickets is only the tip of the iceberg.” He detailed many health issues related to D deficiency, including osteoporosis, infections, pre-eclampsia during pregnancy and periodontitis. He suggested as much as 2,000 IU/day plus a prenatal supplement is suitable for pregnant women and 4,400 IU/day plus a prenatal is suitable for breastfeeding women.

In a presentation from the Sterling-Rice Group covering “The Future of Grocery Retail,” John Grubb stated that millennials’ shopping behavior is having a strong impact on grocery sales. Categories experiencing a decline in sales include canned soup, soda, cereal and frozen entrees, while energy drinks, nuts and protein drinks are on the rise. Millennials are also rejecting overly processed food and have a strong preference for gluten-free foods, paleo foods, low-carb options and non-GMO ingredients.

Reserveage Nutrition hosted the Women in Naturals reception with featured speaker Chef Ann Cooper. Cooper spoke about the challenges of offering children healthy meals in schools, especially when most public schools have a very small budget. She challenged the audience to “do one thing to make the world a better place” such as helping make healthy organic foods more affordable for all Americans.


Expo East 2014 Coverage

Expo East Sets Sail in Baltimore

Natural Choice Award Winners at Expo East

Organic Industry Updates

Wainer Delivers Speech at NPA Awards Ceremony

Published in WholeFoods Magazine, November 2014