On behalf of the MSNA Board of Directors, we regret to inform you that we have cancelled the 2020 Annual Conference scheduled for November 13, 14 & 15, 2020.
Here’s what lead to the decision:
- Safety of attendees and vendors. There is no Covid-19 vaccine or treatment, and there’s not enough conclusive information about transmission and how to avoid getting it. You are essential and we must keep you safe.
- Feasibility of wearing masks and social distancing at a food trade show. You want to taste and smell foods, take samples, and touch equipment and wares; these activities are severely hindered by wearing masks and social distancing. And, our vendors want you to taste products!
- School reopening uncertainty and revenue shortfalls. Districts need time to assess finances and re-establish income. At this time, districts are restricting travel.
- According to SNA’s Impact of Covid-19 on School Nutrition Programs: Part 2:
- 67.5% of survey respondents reported that their program has experienced a financial loss of anywhere from 0 to 90% of revenue; 23% don’t even know yet.
- If USDA waivers expire on June 30, 55% of respondents indicate they will not or are not sure if they will operate summer programs.
A poorly attended conference is a disaster for vendors, MSNA, education presenters, and attendees. Our industry partners report losses as well; spending money to attend a conference that does not generate leads and build relationships adds to the loss.
So stay tuned, check the website frequently for information about the 2021 Annual Conference, and feel free to send us your comments, questions, and suggestions to firstname.lastname@example.org.