Oldways has a reputation in nutrition and health circles for conferences offering a unique mix of delicious food, cutting-edge science, and personal interaction. This FAQ will help you understand how it all works.

Q. Who usually attends an Oldways conference?

A. Most of our attendees fall into three groups: health professionals, manufacturing executives, and food/science writers from top media outlets. Food technologists and chefs are also likely to be among the participants. In all cases, these folks are Key Influencers, not end users. Each doctor or dietitian influences hundreds of patients; each journalist reaches thousands if not millions of readers; each chef serves scores of patrons daily; and each food technologist creates new products that sell millions of units. Click here to see who attended previous Whole Grains Council Conferences.

Q. How many people generally attend an Oldways conference?

A. Oldways conferences are usually small, with the emphasis on quality of participants rather than quantity. With an average of 125-150 key influencers participating, our conferences are big enough to have enormous ripple effects, reaching large masses of people. But they’re also small enough to be renowned for their networking opportunities: doctors are able to ask questions directly of leading researchers, and manufacturers may find their products featured in the New York Times or Good Housekeeping, or on a leading food blog or TV show.

Q. What makes an Oldways conference unique?

A. Oldways conferences are a unique blend of solid science and culinary craft. While we feature the latest research, our sessions are never dry and academic – we pick speakers at the top of their fields who know their subjects and know how to make that subject come alive. And we illustrate our scientific sessions with tasting breaks and meals that bring the subject of healthy food from the classroom to the dining room. It’s one thing to hear that whole grains are heart-healthy – and another to drive that message home by serving fragrant bulgur pilaf or farro salad.

Q. Who provides the food for meals and breaks?

A. Oldways works with our conference sponsors to determine the dishes that will be served at meals and breaks; our sponsors also provide participants with samples. Well-known chefs create special dishes on the conference theme. At a nut conference, for instance, a group of chefs each presented a recipe using a different kind of nuts.

Q. How do you measure the success of an Oldways conference?

A. We design each conference with measurable objectives and outcomes, and follow up before, during and after each project to make sure our objectives are met. We know our sponsors have finite marketing budgets and must be able to demonstrate that their sponsorship dollars were well spent.

Q. Is your conference content influenced by your sponsors?

A. We determine the scientific topics of every conference, and then approach sponsors whose products reinforce the science – never the other way around. In this way, Oldways maintains its reputation for objective, science-based conferences, and our sponsors can be assured that they’re well-matched with an audience that meets their marketing needs. That said, sponsors who sign on early before the program is completely finalized are welcome to suggest speakers who meet our scientific criteria.

Q. Will Continuing Education Units be available?

A. Yes, our conferences regularly offer CEUs to RDs and some other health professionals. Due to the caliber of our speakers and our past experience in being awarded credits, we anticipate approval for these credits at each of our conferences.

Whom will I be networking with at your conference?

Health professionals, marketing executives, government leaders, product development experts, and top national journalists attend our whole grains conferences.

As explained above, we generally aim for up to 150 “key influencers” at our conferences – a number large enough to have a major impact when each attendee in turn spreads the message to hundreds, thousands or even millions of others. Yet this number is manageable enough that serious professional networking can occur.

Here are some representative names of those who attended our previous whole grains conferences:

Manufacturing and Industry leaders

American Italian Pasta Co, Marketing Mgr. ; Sr Food Scientist
Ardent Mills, Director Marketing
Attune Foods, Brand Manager
Aunt Millie’s Bakeries, VP of QA and R&D
Barbara’s Bakery, Dir. of Marketing; VP Sales & Marketing; Dir. of US Marketing
Barilla, R&D; Marketing; Nutrition Manager
Bay State Milling, VP Business Dev.; Product Mgr Health & Wellness; Product Applications
Berlin Natural Bakery, General Manager; Operations Manager
BG Barley, Technical Manager
Bimbo, Marketing; Brand Manager; R&D Corporate; Dir. Innovations; Chief Mktg Officer
Blimpie Intl., Dir. of Field Marketing and Media
Bob’s Red Mill, Dir. of Corporate Outreach; Exec. VP Sales & Marketing; Founder
Brandt Mills, President
Bunge Milling, Dir. of Innovations & Technical Services
Calise & Sons Bakery, VP Sales
Campbell Soup Company, Research Scientist; Sr. Technologist
Canada Bread, Marketing Manager
Caravan Ingredients, Trade Marketing; Marketing Mgr.
Cargill, Sr. Food Technologist; Dir. of Business Development
CCF Brands, Trade Marketing Manager
Certified Foods, President
Chef Solutions, Sr. Food Technologist
Clifbar, Nutrition Technologist
ConAgra, R&D Manager; VP Marketing
Dakota Growers Pasta, Dir. of Marketing
Dakota Specialty Milling, Dir of Sales & Technical Svcs.; VP Sales & Mktg
Dave’s Killer Bread, Product Manager
Dr. Kracker, Sales
Elevation Brands, Nutritionist; CEO
Farmer Direct Foods, Sales Director; President; Operations Manager
Flowers Food, Brand Marketing
Foodways, Inc., Creative CEO
Frito-Lay, Dir. of Nutrition & Regulatory Affairs; Brand Mgr; VP Development; Corp Nutritionist
General Mills, Asst. General Counsel; Sr. Nutrition Scientist; VP Health & Wellness
George Weston Bakeries, Sales
Giant Food, Manager Health and Wellness
Grain Millers, VP Sales & Marketing; Sr Dir Specialty Ingredients
Great Harvest Bread, Director of Brand Management; Nutrition Specialist
Gretchen’s Grains, President
Gruma Corp, VP R&D
Grupo Altex, Manager R&D
Grupo Bimbo, Marketing; Brand Manager; R&D Corporate
Hain Celestial, Marketing; Sr. Brand Manager
Hannaford, Manager of Consumer Education
Harvest Time Bread, President; Regional Sales Mgr.
Hodgson Mill, VP Sales & Marketing
HomeFree, President
Horizon Millling/Cargill, Marketing Manager
House Autry Mills, VP Technical Svcs; Prod Dev Manager
H.U.M.A.N. Healthy Vending, CEO
InHarvest, Corporate Chef K-12; Culinary Director
Jovial Foods, Marketing Manager; PR
Kampffmeyer Food Innovation GMBH, Marketing
Kellogg, Director of Nutrition & Regulatory Affairs; Product Development Specialist
King Arthur Flour, Brand Manager; VP Sales & Marketing; Dir. of Marketing; Recipe Developer
Knorr-Lipton/Unilever, Sr. Brand Marketing Manager; Marketing Dir.
Kraft Foods, Innovative Product Designer; Nutrition Director; Research Chef; Sr. Assoc. Business Mgr
LaBrea Bakery, Marketing
Le Saffre Yeast, Dir. Sales & Marketing; Consumer PR
Lewis Bakeries, Exec. VP; Marketing Director
Lotus Foods, Director of Marketing
Lundberg Family Farms, VP Marketing; Marketing Manager
Mars Food US, Nutrition Communications Mgr.
MGP Ingredients, R&D
Magnoodles, President
Mestemacher Bread/Carl Brandt, PR
Mondelez, Nutrition Communications; Assoc. Dir of Nutrition
Montana Flour & Grains, President; Marketing
Mintel International, Director Custom Solutions Group
National Rice Company, President
Natural Ovens, chairman of the board
Nature’s Path, Director of Marketing; VP Marketing & Sales
New World Pasta, Sr Brand Manager
Oak State Products, Director of R&D, Registered Dietitian
Over the Top Food Co., President
Panera Bread, Director of Bakery Products; Quality Assurance Mgr.
Pepperidge Farms, Regulatory Affairs
Post Foods, Sr. Nutrition & Regulatory Scientist
Publix Supermarkets, General Manager; R&D Manager
Puratos, R&D Manager
Quaker Oats, Director of Professional Marketing; PR Manager
PepsiCo, Principal Scientist, Nutrition Sr Scientist
Ralcorp, R&D Program Leader; VP Retail Sales & Marketing
RiceTec, VP Marketing
Rich Products, Sr. Marketing Manager; Scientist
Riviana Foods, Manager of PR and test kitchens, Marketing Manager
Roman Meal Co, Sr. Scientist; Dir. of Marketing; Brand Manager; VP Thought & Product Innovation
Rubschlager Baking, Secretary-Treasurer; President
Rudi’s Organic Bakery, Marketing
Sara Lee, Group Director Product Nutrition
Schwartz Brothers Bakerty, Sales
Schwebel Baking Co, VP of Marketing
Siemer Milling / Hodgson Mill, R&D
Signature Breads, Marketing Mgr, Director of Quality/R&D
Snyder’s of Hanover, Marketing Director; Marketing Mgr, Retail; VP of Marketing
Sol Grains, Broker
Soyaworld, Marketing
SPINS, Sales Director
Sunnyland Mills, President
SunOpta Ingredients, Marketing
Sunrich, Sales Manager
Sun Valley Rice, Dir of Communications
TH Foods, Marketing Manager
The Bama Companies, Dir. Of Food Product Development
The NPD Group, Director
The Schwan Food Company, Marketing
The Teff Company, Owners
Tribeca Oven, VP Marketing & Sales
Uncle Ben’s/Mars, Scientific & Regulatory Affairs Manager; VP Corporate Affairs

Health, Government and Academia

Baylor College of Medicine Dept of Pediatrics, Professor
California Polytechnic State Univ., Professor Emeritus
Center for Celiac Research/MassGeneral Hospital, Director; Dietitian
College of St. Catherine, Professor Nutrition & Food Science
Concept Nutrition, Registered Dietitian
Fairfax County Public Schools, Dir. Of Food & Nutrition Svcs.
FDA, Office of Nutrition, Labeling & Dietary Supplements
Hampton Health, Registered Dietitian
Health Quality Partners, RD
Healthreach Diabetes, Endocrine & Nutrition Ctr, Medical Director
HHS, Public Health Advisor
Institute for Obesity Research and Evaluation, Research Director
Johns Hopkins University, Nurse Practitioner
Kansas State University, Baking Instructor; Professor of Grain Science
Marshfield Clinic, Vice Chair, Dept. of Cardiology
Missouri State, Professor of Human Nutrition
Moore Family Center for Whole Grain Foods, Endowed Dir
Naval Special Warfare, Human Performance Nutritionist
Oklahoma State University, Professor
Santa Barbara Inst. for Medical Nutrition & Healthy Weight, Medical Director
Stanford Univ. School of Medicine, Asst. Professor Pediatrics
Tufts University, Scientist/Professor
Univ. of Minnesota, Dept of Food Science, Professor; Asst. Professor
Univ. of Tennessee Health Science Center, Asst. Professor
Univ. of Missouri, Nutritional Sciences
Univ. of Hartford, Instructor
Univ. of Rhode Island, Cancer Prevention Research Ctr, Director
USDA ARS, Research Leader
USDA Center for Nutrition Policy & Promotion, Exec. Director; Nutritionists
USDA FNS, Supervisor, Food Distribution; Sr. Nutrition Analyst; Nutritionist; Program Analyst
US Intl. Trade Commission, Analyst
Yale-Griffin Prevention Research Center, Director


101cookbooks.com, Creator & Author
America’s Test Kitchen
Associated Press, Journalist
The Atlantic, Senior Editor
Baking and Snack Magazine, Sr. Associate Editor
Baking Management, Editor / Assoc. Publisher
Better Homes & Gardens, Editor of Special Interest Publications; Digital Food Editor
Boston Globe, columnist
Chicago Tribune, syndicated columnist
Cooking Light, Test Kitchen Professional; Projects Editor
Culinate.com, Editor
Diabetic Living, Writer; Sr. Food & Nutrition Editor
Diabetes Health Magazine, Editor
Eating Well, Deputy Editor of Food, Nutrition Editor
Environmental Nutrition, Editor
Essence, Food Editor
Every Day with Rachel Ray, Food Editor
Fine Cooking, Associate Editor
Food & Environment Reporting Network, Editor in Chief
Food & Nutrition Managzine, Dir. of Creative Media
Food Navigator, Sr Correspondent
Foodservice Monthly, Editor
Good Housekeeping Institute, Nutrition Director
Gourmet Retailer, Executive Editor
Health magazine, Food & Nutrition Editor
Homemakers magazine, Columnist
Huffington Post, Food Writer
LA Times Syndicate, food reporter
Low Carb Luxury, Editor in chief
Milling & Baking News, Managing Editor
Modern Baking, Editor
Modernist Cuisine, Food Scientist
Naples Daily News, Nutrition writer
National Post, Nutrition writer
Nation’s Restaurant News, Online editor
New York Times, columnist
NPR Miami, Host / Producer
Organic Business News, writer
Parade magazine, syndicated columnist
Parents Magazine, Food and Nutrition Editor
Prevention Magazine, Trend Research Director
Restaurant Forum, Editor and Publisher
Rodale, Director of Consumer Insights, Eatclean.com writer
Self magazine, Diet and Nutrition Editor
Shape, Sr. Editor Food & Nutrition
SmartBrief, Director of Audience Development
Star-Ledger, Journalist
Supermarket Savvy, Editor
Taste of Home, Associate Editor
The Food Network, Nutritionist
Times-Picayune, Food Editor
Today’s Dietitian, Food/Nutrition writer
Washington Post, Food Blogger
WebMD, Director of Nutrition
Wellness Foods, Managing Editor

PR and Advertising Firms

360PR, SVP Healthy Living; Marketing & Bus. Dev.
Burson Marsteller, Account Executive
Coyne Public Relations, Sr. Account Executive
Edelman, Account Executive
Fleishman-Hillard, Sr. Vice President; Vice President
Golin Harris, Nutrition Manager; Account Manager
Ketchum, Account Supervisor
Koopman Ostbo, Account Manager
Marina Maher Communications, Sr. VP
Mullen, Nutrition Communication Supervisor
Pollock Communications, VP
Porter Novelli, Account Director
Splash LLC, Principal
Tonic Partners, CEO

Non-Profits and Trade Associations

Alberta Barley Commission, Manager
American Baking Association, SVP Government Affairs
American Institute of Baking, Director of Education
Danish Cancer Society, Project Manager
Go Grains Health & Nutrition (Australia), Executive Manager
Healthy Dining Finder, VP
International Food Information Council (IFIC), Director Nutrition Communications
International Macrobiotic Shiatsu Society, Co-founders
International Pasta Association, Director
Japan Whole Grains Association
Kamut International, PR Director; CEO
Kansas Wheat Commission, Nutrition Educator
National Barley Foods Council, Publicist; Research Consultant
National Dairy Council, VP Health Partnerships
National Restaurant Association, Director of Nutrition Policy
National Sorghum Producers, Research Director
North American Millers’ Assn, President
School Nutrition Assn, VP of Government Policy
USA Rice Foundation, VP of Domestic Promotion; Foodservice Marketing
Wheat Foods Council, Director
Wheat Marketing Center, Food Technologist
Wild Blueberry Association, Nutrition Advisor

Culinary / Foodservice / Supermarkets

Alexandria VA Public Schools, Dir. of Food & Nutrition Svcs
Aramark, Concept Development Chef
Big Y Foods, Lead Registered Dietitian
Chartwells, Director of Nutrition; Regional Corporate Chef
Cooleatz Restaurants, Owner/Chef
Compass Group North America, Dir. of Concept Development; Regional Dietition; VP Nutrition
Dominican Hospital, Executive Chef
Dunkin Brands, Sr Mgr R&D Bakery, Sr Regulatory Nutrition Specialist
Fidelity Investments, Pastry Chef; Lead Chef
Johnson & Wales University, Culinary Nutrition Program Director
Kwik-Trip, Dir of Food Research/Product Dev; Corporate RD
McDonald’s, Director of Nutrition
Morrison Management Specialists, VP Corporate Culinary Services
Newtown CT Public Schools, Resident Dietitian
Panera Bread, VP Bakery Development
Prince William County VA Schools, Dir. of School FNS
Restaurant Associates, Marketing
SUPERVALU, Director of Health & Wellness Marketing
Stop & Shop, Nutritionist
Target Corporation, Health & Wellness Specialist
Traditions on Chestnut cooking school, Proprietor
Virginia Tech, Food Production Manager
West Virginia University, Foodservice Director
Walt Disney World Resorts, Chef de Cuisine
Walt Disney World Resorts, Special Dietary Needs Manager
Wegman’s Food Markets, Bread Artisan; Senior VP, Corporate Nutritionist