WASHINGTON, DC — September 26, 2005 — A multi-session module on disaster planning highlights the education program at the 2005 Productivity Convention and EXPO, October 23-25 in Orlando, Florida. Hosted by the Food Marketing Institute (FMI) and the International Foodservice Distribution Association (IFDA), the convention is the premiere annual event for food distribution, transportation, operations and logistics professionals.

Coming during one of the most dramatic hurricane seasons in U.S. history, the four-part program module will be led by Robert Zegarra, a global consultant and recognized expert in disaster planning and business recovery.

“Food distributors are an absolutely critical force in times of natural or terrorist-made disasters,” Zegarra said. “Not only are they a key juncture in the food delivery supply chain, they also serve as an important collection and delivery point for all disaster relief materials, provide trucks for transporting goods and dedicate staff trained in logistics operations.”

Specific sessions and times:

Process Safety Management – Getting Started in Your Disaster Recovery Plan
Sunday, October 23, 9:15 – 10:15 a.m.

Effective disaster recovery and business continuity planning is critical for any business, but it is especially important to the food distribution and transportation industry. This comprehensive session will provide the foundation for identifying potential hazards and the business units most likely to be affected. Key issues include defining parameters for design and construction, identifying potential external hazards within a geographic location and pinpointing potential facility hazards such as leaks and spillage. The session will be complemented by insights from distribution experts with first-hand disaster experience.

Planning for the Safety of Your People and Your Products
Sunday, October 23, 10:30 – 11:30 a.m.

Employees and products are the two most important assets inside a distribution facility.   How can a company develop a concrete, effective plan to protect them in the event of a disaster? This session will examine the parameters for employee safety and training, hazard education and preparation, inventory monitoring and facility integrity. Food distributors will participate in the session.

Thinking Ahead in Technology: Keep the Power On and Keep the Data Flowing
Monday, October 24, 9:15 – 10:15 a.m.

One of the biggest questions in disaster recovery planning is “What will happen when the power goes out?” The presenter and distribution experts will offer the tools and insight to plan for that eventuality and to address the issues of restoring power and data. Major considerations include identifying emergency power sources and establishing data backup alternatives and locations.

What’s Our Plan for Going Live Again?
Monday, October 24, 10:30 – 11:30 a.m.

After addressing the key components of the overall disaster recovery plan — people, products, data and power — companies have to find a way to get their businesses running again. Product sourcing, communication with vendors and customers, prioritizing data communications — all are critical to reestablishing business continuity. Zegarra and a panel of distribution professionals will offer a broad overview.

The disaster planning module is part of an intensive, 40-session education program featuring presenters from across the industry — retail and wholesale operators, foodservice distributors, consultants, government officials and experts from various disciplines — addressing key subjects such as transportation and distribution logistics, technology and human resources. Sessions will be presented in multiple formats, including general sessions, workshops, roundtable discussions and idea exchanges.

Complementing the program will be a wide-ranging exposition featuring 200 top food industry suppliers, tours of Orlando-area distribution facilities, the 19th Annual Truck Driving Championship and a variety of networking events.

For details, please visit the 2005 Productivity Convention & EXPO Web site at www.productivityconvention.com.