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NGA’s Fly-In For Fair Competition Begins In Washington, D.C.

NGA Fly-In for Fair competition
NGA President and CEO Greg Ferrara leads a panel discussion with Jim Lilly of SpartanNash, Kim Eskew of Harps and Kristin Popp of Woodman's, during this week's Fly-in for Fair Competition in Washington, D.C.

The National Grocers Association (NGA) has begun its annual Fly-In for Fair Competition in Washington, D.C.

This event mobilizes independent grocers to engage with members of Congress, addressing critical issues such as antitrust reform and enforcement, SNAP Choice enhancements and the reform of credit card routing to reduce exorbitant swipe fees.

“The Fly-In for Fair Competition offers an unparalleled platform for independent grocers to directly influence policy decisions that significantly affect their daily operations,” said Greg Ferrara, NGA president and CEO.

“These essential discussions will set the strategic direction for the coming year, as the independent grocery sector tirelessly advocates for a fairer market landscape that ultimately benefits the diverse communities our members serve.”

The event kicked off May 21 with Rep. Cliff Bentz (OR-02) speaking with attendees about a variety of topics important to independent grocers. Bentz is a key member of the House Judiciary Committee and Subcommittee on the Administrative State, Regulatory Reform and Antitrust. Following Bentz, attendees listened to a dynamic session featuring Congresswoman Laurel Lee (FL-15), a member of the House Judiciary Committee.

This followed an insightful session led by Brad Fitch, deputy director of the Congressional Management Foundation, titled “How to Tune Your Pitch to Resonate with Any Member of Congress.” Veteran Capitol Hill experts will join NGA’s Chief of Government Relations and Counsel Chris Jones, alongside NGA VP of Government Relations Stephanie Johnson, for a session on effective policy advocacy, aiming to arm attendees with the strategic insights and messaging techniques essential for driving legislative action and achieving tangible results.

Concluding the comprehensive agenda for May 21, attendees will hear from A.B. Stoddard, a respected columnist for The Bulwark and a contributor to SiriusXM’s POTUS channel. Stoddard will provide a nonpartisan analysis of the current political climate and upcoming elections, offering valuable context for the grocers’ advocacy efforts.

On May 22, nearly 120 independent grocers will head to Capitol Hill, poised to conduct more than 100 high-stakes meetings with policymakers. These discussions will focus on the urgent need for robust antitrust enforcement to curb monopolistic practices, the expansion of SNAP Choice to improve food access for low-income families and the critical reform of credit card swipe fees to alleviate financial burdens on small businesses.

“Our members are dedicated to serving their communities, and through these advocacy efforts, we aim to ensure that they operate on a level playing field,” Ferrara emphasized. “This Fly-In is a testament to our commitment to championing the issues that matter most to independent grocers and the consumers they serve.”

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About the author

Sommer Stockton

Web Editor

Sommer joined The Shelby Report in January 2022 after graduating from Brenau University in Gainesville, GA with a B.A. and M.A. in Communications and Media Studies. Sommer is excited to learn about the grocery industry and share her findings with The Shelby Report's readers!

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