The Iowa Grocery Industry Association (IGIA) is celebrating 120 years of representing the food industry, including supermarkets, convenience stores, suppliers, wholesalers, brokers, manufacturers and distributors. The association will commemorate the occasion with a special anniversary logo and by returning to Cedar Rapids, where it first opened its doors in 1899, to hold its annual Get Connected Convention July 9–11 at the Double Tree by Hilton.
At the convention this year, attendees will gather Tuesday evening for a Trivia Night FUNraiser, featuring live music by Jason Walsmith of The Nadas and a round of IGIA-history-based trivia questions. Proceeds will be used to fund scholarships for youth with ties to the grocery industry.
On Wednesday, immediately following the annual Iowa Grocers Education Foundation Scholarship Auction, IGIA members will gather for a 120th birthday celebration to be held at 9 p.m. July 10 in the Parlor Ballroom on the 16th floor of the hotel. Participants will have a chance to toast the association while networking with industry peers and taking in a professional fireworks display provided by E&J Gallo Winery.
IGIA President Michelle Hurd noted that IGIA’s mission today, as it was in 1899, is to proactively promote and strengthen Iowa’s grocery industry.
“All of us working in the food industry can be proud of the vital role we play in supplying safe, wholesome food to Iowans as well as having a positive impact in the community,” Hurd said. “We provide the fuel that moves our state forward as we work to improve the health of Iowans. Retailers today focus on providing wholesome selections, convenient prepared food options, healthful recipes, cooking advice, knowledgeable dieticians, helpful apps and services that make getting a meal on the table a little easier for busy families.”
IGIA retail members employ close to 100,000 individuals at 1,400 locations throughout the state, providing an estimated $1.5 billion in wages annually, contributing millions of dollars annually in taxes and more than $12.5 million to local charitable endeavors each year.
Other ways the IGIA will celebrate its 120th anniversary at the convention include a gallery of historical photos and a special 120th anniversary tribute video.
To view the complete schedule and to register, visit iowagrocers.com/get-connected-convention-2019.cfm.