About Petfood Forum

If you are a member of the pet food manufacturing industry, Petfood Forum is the most important conference of the year to invest your budget to attend, and here are a few of the many reasons why:

Pet food manufacturing equipment

Audience

Petfood Forum events are executive-level conferences for the global pet food and pet treat industry, and include an exclusive exhibition of industry suppliers, co-packers and service providers. Attendees include professionals working in nutrition, ingredient and processing technologies, packaging, food science, R&D, product development, food safety, QA/QC, purchasing, import/export and regulatory compliance. Over 2,600 pet food and pet treat industry professionals attended the 2016 event (a 19% increase over 2015’s attendance) and this number is expected to grow even more in 2017.

A sample of feedback from our attendees:

“Everyone that is anyone in the Pet Food Industry is attending. A great place to network and make new contacts.”

“Best conference of the year – where else can you go to laugh about the past, be informed about the present, and get a glimpse of the future.”

“Great experience – I have attended the show over 15 years and will continue to as it brings value to our company.”

 

Value

Petfood Forum conferences are focused on providing attendees and exhibitors a productive, memorable and enjoyable experience with something new to offer, year after year. With a Full Petfood Forum Conference Pass, registration will include:

  • 2-day full conference pass with full Breakfast and Lunch plus multiple coffee breaks each day
  • Opening Night Reception
  •  Tuesday Happy Hour Reception
  •  Closing night Kansas City BBQ Bash
  •  Access to all speakers, educational sessions and the Exhibit Hall

Early Bird discount rate will save 15% off the regular registration rate. Group discount rates with savings of up to 20% are also available. Students are welcomed and encouraged to attend, and will receive their own special discounted rate. Day passes and Exhibit Hall-only passes are also available.

 

Business

By relocating to Kansas City, Mo., the Petfood Forum conference and exhibition is now in the heart of where more than 70 animal health and pet food company headquarters are located, offering the chance for attendees and exhibitors to do a lot more business over the course of the two day show. It provides the ability to meet those hard to reach prospects, have project update meetings on site with customers and meet new leads thru networking events. No other petfood manufacturing industry event provides the opportunity to visit with nearly 200 suppliers from ingredient, additive and formulation solutions, processing and packaging equipment, flexible packaging solutions, co-packing solutions and services, and consulting and additional services, all in one location.

The Petfood Forum host hotel, the Kansas City Marriott Downtown, boasts over 900 rooms and spacious, newly remodeled lounge areas. It is conveniently located 1 block away from the Kansas City Convention Center, a 5-minute walk from the Kansas City Power & Light District, the city’s newest and very popular entertainment district, and a short 20 minute drive from the Kansas City International Airport (MCI). With all that Kansas City has to offer, there are plenty of places to take customers and prospects to dine and enjoy the nightlife.

 

Education – designed by pet food industry professionals, for pet food industry professionals

The Petfood Forum content advisory board carefully selects speakers and analyzes industry trends each and every year to ensure new and relevant topics. Educational sessions deliver the opportunity to learn the latest research and innovative information on pet nutrition, global pet food market growth, pet food safety, processing, packaging and much more—all from leading, recognized industry experts.

Another unique educational feature is Petfood Innovation Workshop, which will take place on Monday, April 3, 2017. The 2017 Petfood Innovation Workshop will have a new theme (in 2016 the theme was ” Creating high-impact pet food products, featuring meats and novel proteins”), and will again feature a hands-on format and take place the day before the commencement of Petfood Forum on Monday, April 3, 2017 from 9am – 5pm. The new 2017 theme, will be announced by late 2016 via press release.

General FAQs

When and where will the next Petfood Forum take place?

The next Petfood Forum conference and exhibition will be the 25th anniversary edition, held on April 3-5, 2017 in Kansas City, Mo., with the next edition of the one-day Petfood Innovation Workshop (featuring a new theme) to kick off the event on April 3rd. The location will once again be at the Kansas City Convention Center, 200 West 12th Street, Kansas City, Mo. USA.

Why did Petfood Forum change locations to Kansas City?

Kansas City, Mo. provides many added benefits and opportunities for Petfood Forum attendees and exhibitors. It is in the heart of where more than 70 animal health and petfood company headquarters are located, offering the chance to do a lot of business over the course of the two day show. Other features of the new event location include a short one-block walk from the host hotel to the conference and exhibition location. Inside, attendees can expect modern and convenient meeting rooms, an expanded and flexible exhibit area and breath-taking panoramic views of downtown Kansas City. The Kansas City International Airport makes air travel to the event very accessible, and is conveniently located a short 20-minute drive from Petfood Forum’s downtown location. The Kansas City Power & Light District, an entertainment district with fine dining, bars and shopping is also a 5 minute walk from the hotel.  There are also regional connections to petfood manufacturing companies and their suppliers within a short driving distance.

What is the host hotel for the next Petfood Forum and how do I reserve a room?

Our host hotel will again be the Kansas City Marriott Downtown. It is conveniently located 1 block away from the Kansas City Convention Center, a 5-minute walk from the Power & Light entertainment district, and is a short 20 minute drive from the Kansas City International Airport (MCI).

Who attends Petfood Forum events?

Petfood Forum attracts the pet food industry’s largest collection of companies that supply brand and private-label manufacturers with ingredient, additive and formulation solutions, processing and packaging equipment, flexible packaging solutions, co-packing solutions and services, and consulting and additional services, all in one location. Demand was so high, the exhibit hall show floor sold out booth space for the 3rd consecutive year at the 2016 event.

What is the theme for the next Petfood Innovation Workshop?

The 2017 Petfood Innovation Workshop will have a new theme (in 2016 the theme was creating high-impact pet food products, featuring meat and novel proteins), and will again feature a hands-on format that will take place the day before the start of Petfood Forum on Monday, April 3, 2017, from 9am – 5pm. The new 2017 theme, will be announced by late 2016 via press release. Please watch for email announcements in regards to Early Bird registration as the 2016 Petfood Innovation Workshop sold out months in advance. If you wish to be added to our email distribution list, please send your contact information to: eventsinfo@wattglobal.com, with “Add me to your Petfood Forum email list” in the subject line.

Do Petfood Forum events serve the global Petfood industry?

Yes. Petfood Forum and Petfood Innovation Workshop provide show visitors from all over the world with opportunities to network with industry peers, learn from leading pet food experts, consultants and technical experts, visit with suppliers, and transact business with one another on a global level. Our international events include: Petfood Forum Asia, Petfood Forum China and Petfood Forum Europe

What is the mission of Petfood Forum?

The Petfood Forum group of conferences and exhibitions are unique and exclusive events serving the global petfood manufacturing industry. They deliver the opportunity to learn the latest research and innovative information on pet nutrition, global petfood market growth, petfood safety, processing, packaging and much more—all from leading, recognized industry experts. In addition, Petfood Forum conferences are the ideal opportunity for petfood professionals from around the world to network, exchange ideas and do business with one another and with leading industry suppliers.

When did Petfood Forum events get their start?

Since 1992, the annual Petfood Forum and Petfood Workshop conferences in the United States have been taking place and growing every year. Petfood Forum and Petfood Workshop have always been based in the Chicago area until relocating to a larger venue for the 2015 event, which will be held in Kansas City, Missouri. Petfood Forum conferences also offer one-day events outside of North America, including Petfood Forum Asia, Petfood Forum China and Petfood Forum Europe. These are held in partnership with other shows — Petfood Forum Asia is held every two years in Bangkok, Thailand, in conjunction with Victam Asia. Petfood Forum China is located in Shanghai in partnership with Pet Fair Asia. Since 2007, Petfood Forum Europe has been held in partnership with Victam International, with the most recent conference being held June, 2015, in Cologne, Germany.

How are Petfood Industry magazine and WATT Global Media affiliated with Petfood Forum?

Petfood Forum is organized and hosted by Petfood Industry magazine. Petfood Industry has been the leading source of information for the global petfood manufacturing for more than 50 years, delivering insights and knowledge via a monthly magazine, website, e-newsletters and other media. Both are owned by WATT Global Media, a full-service publishing and media company founded in 1917 that provides exceptional business content and solutions to the agribusiness industry. As an industry innovator, WATT Global Media has connected buyers and sellers in the poultry, pig, animal feed and petfood industries through its media channels for more than 99 years.

Tips and Tricks for the best Petfood Forum experience

HOTEL

Kansas City Marriott Downtown is conveniently located 1 block away from the Kansas City Convention Center and a short walk from the Power & Light Entertainment District. Kansas City International Airport (MCI) is a convenient 20 minute drive away.

 

GROUND TRANSPORTATION

Taxis are available from the Kansas City International Airport (MCI) to the Kansas City Marriott Downtown Hotel and Kansas City Convention Center; the average fare to / from downtown Kansas City is $50.  Kansas City Marriott Downtown is 20 miles from the MCI (KCI) Airport.  Kansas City cab rates are $2.10 per mile, plus $2.50 fee, plus $3.00 airport fee – average is $50 each way.

SuperShuttle of Kansas City provides roundtrip transportation from Kansas City International Airport to the convention hotels. To make your reservation and receive the CVC attendee discounted rate, click here(http://groups.supershuttle.com/petfoodforum.html). You may also make your reservation by calling (800) BLUE-VAN (258-3826) and mentioning the discount code code QJFZD.   SuperShuttle Kansas City offers a Shared-Ride Round-Trip service to/from the Marriott Downtown for a discounted group rate of $30 per person.  One-way will be $18 per person.

The city’s MAX (Metro Area Express) rapid transit service is another ground-transportation option. MAX provides faster, more convenient commutes than traditional bus service for all points between the River Market area (north of downtown) and the Country Club Plaza shopping center in the south. Each ride is $3. To purchase a $10 three-day pass that gives you unlimited rides for three consecutive days, click here (http://www.kcata.org/fares/visitors).

Directions / Parking in the Kansas City Convention & Entertainment Centers

Discounted parking of $7/day at the Kansas City Convention Center is available to Petfood Forum attendees and exhibitors driving to Petfood Forum and Innovation Workshop.

 

RESTAURANTS AND ENTERTAINMENT

Known as the barbecue capital of the world and for its live jazz, join thousands of your petfood industry colleagues at the 2017 Petfood Forum in Kansas City and enjoy yourself at the same time.  Kansas City is a gracious and historic blend of cultures, arts and professional sports featuring vibrant restaurants, hotels, shops and art galleries.

The Kansas City Power & Light District, an entertainment district with fine dining, bars and shopping is also a 5 minute walk from the hotel. We recommend making dinner reservations in advance in this very popular and lively neighborhood. A myriad of delicious options are offered here on the VisitKC.com website.

 

NAME BADGES

Did you register in advance?  Your name badge, badgeholder and program materials will be available at Petfood Forum Registration located in the lobby of the Kansas City Convention Center.  Open hours are:

Monday, April 3, 8:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m.

Tuesday, April 4, 7:30 a.m. – 6:30 p.m.

Wednesday, April 5, 7:30 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.

 

SHIPPING/BUSINESS CENTER

Business Center services are available at the Kansas City Convention Center, Lobby 2100.  For a fee, copying, color copying, binding, laminating, notary public, office supplies and outbound package wrapping and shipping via Federal Express and UPS.  The Business Center accepts cash, MasterCard, VISA and American Express.  Sorry, checks are not accepted.

 

WHAT’S WHERE?

  •         Coat / Luggage Check                   Lobby 2300, Kansas City Convention Center
  •         Petfood Forum Exhibits                 Hall E, Kansas City Convention Center
  •         Petfood Forum Registration          Lobby 2300m, Kansas City Convention Center
  •         Welcome Reception                       Grand Ballroom CD, Kansas City Convention Center
  •         Keynote Sessions                           Grand Ballroon B, Kansas City Convention Center
  •         Headquarter Hotel                          Marriott Kansas City Downtown
  •         Wednesday Closing Barbecue     Barney Allis Plaza, Outdoor Courtyard across from Marriott

 

STAY HEALTHY

The indoor climate of a convention center is very dry.  Alcohol and caffeine are diuretics which dehydrate you further.  Throughout your day, remember to drink lots of water to combat dehydration.

You’ll be seeing a lot of people (both familiar and new), during the conference. This means lots of hand shaking. To help avoid germs, wash your hands frequently and carry some pocket Handy Wipes for convenience. Don’t forget your vitamins. Use lip balm and consider using saline nasal spray and eye drops.  All this will help keep your body tuned up and the germs away.

Walking the Exhibit hall floor?  Even your most comfortable shoes at home won’t be that way after two days of walking through the expansive convention center.  Bring at least two pair of shoes and trade off every each day.

Petfood Forum Contact Information

Event Exhibit Sales & Sponsorships

Karen Blandford-Anderson
National Sales Director
kblandford-anderson@wattglobal.com
Phone: +1.603.432.9290

Melissa Thrune
Sales Manager
mthrune@wattglobal.com
Phone: +1.815.222.0112

Craig Greuel
Marketplace/Classified Sales Manager
cgreuel@wattglobal.com
Phone: +1.815.966.5591

Tineke van Spanje
International Sales Manager
tvanspanje@wattglobal.com
Phone: +31.495.526.155

Dingding Li
Southeast Asia Sales
dingdingli@vip.163.com
Phone: +86.137.640.39062

Executive

Steve Akins
Vice President, Publisher
Global Petfood/North American Agribusiness
sakins@wattglobal.com
Phone: +1.815.209.6444

Event Operations

Kathleen Kelley
Event Operations Manager
kkelley@wattglobal.com

Event Content

Debbie Phillips-Donaldson
Editor-in-Chief
dphillips@wattglobal.com
Phone: +1.815.966.5424

Event Support

eventInfo@wattnet.net
Phone: +1.312.914.7114

For assistance with completing your registration, or questions on an existing registration, please contact Petfood Forum registration Customer Service:

Local telephone number: +1.224.563.3768
Toll free number: +1.877.394.9750
Customer service hours: M-F, 9 AM – 5 PM CST

Event Sales Manager
Gabriella Lopez
glopez@wattglobal.com
Phone: +1.312.914.7114

Director of Marketing
Nancy Batio
nbatio@wattglobal.com
Phone: +1.815.966.5422