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What are Food Processing Facilities Doing Now?

  • Post By: Jennifer Hogan Redmond

“Please keep your seat belt fastened in case we experience unexpected rough air.” Anyone who travels by plane is accustomed to this announcement.

Heading into the International Poultry & Processing Expo (IPPE) in Atlanta, I expected to hear similar proclamations from attendees. It’s time to buckle up; the food industry is headed for a rough ride. Avian flu has been painful, and the price of eggs is high. Feed costs are soaring. Labor is non-existent, and the supply chain is still in disarray. Overall, the economic outlook is murky. Yes, a little hesitancy about the future would be understandable.

Yet, among the processors and suppliers visiting with us, it was full speed ahead because product demand is still growing. Food must be produced, and processors are stretched to meet demand, making plans to expand, renovate and build. Pragmatic attitudes seem to be prevailing. Maybe we can ease up on that buckle a bit.

Should we be worried at all? What does the food industry radar indicate? Are there storms in our path we just aren’t seeing? Or are we, by expanding and improving efficiency now, buckling up and getting ready for the future?

Our instinct leans toward the latter.