Hi there! Our “On the Road with RDs” series has been on hiatus because of the COVID-19 pandemic, but we’re back — just not on the road — after Registered Dietitians Jessica Holler and Nicole Sayre virtually attended the 2020 Food & Nutrition Conference & Expo™ (FNCE®).
The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics puts on this conference annually, helping nutrition professionals learn about recent research and upcoming trends. The expo is where food and nutrition companies market their products and services, and there are also poster sessions and social events. The virtual programming offered all these same experiences, though it wasn’t the same as seeing them in person.
Jessica: I learned so much during three days of educational sessions. Topics included communicating nutritional research in the media and to communities, behavioral changes in food service, controversies with saturated fat, trends in the plant protein market, how to lead teaching kitchens, and how to address food insecurity on college campuses. During breaks between sessions, I browsed the virtual expo booths — keeping an eye out for top allergen-free foods for our menus — and attended poster sessions to learn about exciting innovations in nutrition. All this great information was inspiring, and I can't wait to use it to enhance SAGE’s programs for our communities.
Nicole: Despite FNCE being virtual this year, we had a few fun and interesting days! The educational sessions I attended covered topics such as combatting weight bias, the evidence behind the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, economic impacts on agriculture, and bioengineered foods. I'm still processing everything I learned, and I can’t wait to incorporate it into SAGE’s programs and philosophies! We couldn’t have food samples this year, but I visited numerous food companies and organizations in the Expo Hall to see what exciting new products or information I could report back to SAGE. Overall, my FNCE experience was packed with valuable and inspiring nutritional information!