MUNICH — On March 15-17, iba.CONNECTING EXPERTS will host a virtual event for professionals and suppliers in the baking industry. Participants from more than 100 countries will be able to network and listen to presentations on innovations, products and expert insights. The virtual event will be followed by an in-person event in Munich in October 2021.

“The goal was to actively integrate partners and exhibitors into the supporting program in order to generate diverse and qualitative expert lectures from the industry for the industry,” said Cathleen Kabashi, director of iba. “Renowned experts will address a wide range of relevant topics — from automation to baking production trends, logistics and packaging to the future of nutrition.”

The event primarily is focused on the specialist online lectures. Experts will give lectures on current topics such as the use of robotic solutions for more efficiency in the operational process, insight into the impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic at each level of the bakery supply chain and what other bakeries are doing to implement a greener production line.

In partnership with iba, the International Baking Industry Exposition (IBIE) will host three education sessions at Iba.CONNECTING EXPERTS. Kerwin Brown, president and chief executive officer, BEMA, and Robb MacKie, president and CEO, American Bakers Association (ABA), are teaming up to discuss key trends in the US market that affected business in 2020 and what it means for the wholesale baking industry in the year ahead. Karl Thorson, global food safety & sanitation manager, General Mills, Minneapolis, will speak on optimizing sanitation processes for cost savings and increased capacity while driving down food safety risk. IBIE also will host a panel moderated by Mr. Brown on how robotics can promote production efficiencies and provide a solution to workforce challenges. The panel will feature Craig Souser, president and CEO, JLS Automation; John Kean, product group leader, AMF Bakery Systems; and Rick Hoskins, president and CEO, Colborne Foodbotics and Yeaman Machine Technologies.

iba.CONNECTING EXPERT educational sessions are free of charge for all participants. Attendees will have an opportunity to ask questions and interact live with the speaker.