Thank you for joining us in this year’s Boardroom. It’s been another eventful year since we last met, marked by the emergence of new marketplace challenges, the easing of others, and the potential for further transformation and opportunity.
The articles in this year’s volume reflect FMI’s Imperative Issues Framework, a joint initiative with Oliver Wyman that began in 2013. As we close in on the first decade since the framework was launched, these guidelines for senior executives have proven prescient in helping navigate strong and often-unexpected headwinds like the pandemic, supply chain glitches, labor shortages, and soaring food costs, all buffered by consumers’ ever-evolving tastes and preferences. It underscores the tenet about building a strong foundation that can withstand the elements.
Together, FMI and Oliver Wyman identified and prioritized six imperative issues impacting the food industry now and likely into the near future: Supply chain disruption, labor shortages and workforce challenges, accelerating technology transformation, changing marketplace and societal dynamics, evolving consumer behaviors, and rising ESG expectations. Again this year, we’ve discovered — and are heartened by — a broad alignment among retailers, wholesalers, and suppliers on the significance and hierarchy of these issues.
As you will read in the following pages, the pace of disruption in our industry has continued to accelerate amid converging challenges. We hope you find the journal articles helpful as you focus on the now with a sense of urgency, while also being able to look up and ahead alongside all of us who support you.
Leslie G. Sarasin
President and CEO
FMI — The Food Industry Association
Global Industry Association
Civic and Economic Organization Lead