WASHINGTON – As the Omicron variant continues to spread in the United States, the North American Meat Institute (NAMI) and FMI – the Food Industry Association (FMI) announced on Jan. 12 that the associations are canceling the 2022 Annual Meat Conference. The event was to be held at the Gaylord National Harbor in Washington, DC, from Feb. 7-9.

“The purpose of AMC is to bring together retailers and the meat and poultry industry,” said Julie Anna Potts president and chief executive officer of NAMI. “Like the meat and poultry industry, many of our partners in retail are experiencing significant operational and supply chain challenges. At this time, attending an in-person conference is difficult which diminishes the value of the event for all participants.”

Both associations said the event was canceled out of respect for the health of their communities and the attention of respective members are putting into their operations. 

“Our community is prioritizing the health of its people and operations so that we will be able to continue to serve the shopper, but we are committed to sharing additional category insights with our audiences throughout the year,” said Leslie G Sarasin, president and CEO of the FMI.

Full refunds will be issued to all attendees, exhibitors and event coordinators will cancel hotel reservations on behalf of all registered participants. 

Despite the cancellation, NAMI and FMI, in partnership with Sealed Air, will host a virtual discussion series regarding The Power of Meat analysis. The three-part series will start on Feb. 7. Registration information will be available via the conference website and in a follow-up communication to previously registered attendees. 

The analysis will also be available for free to members and previously registered attendees.