9:00 - 9:05


Official opening of #SIALCanadaConnect

Welcome message from Mr. André Lamontagne, Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, followed by Xavier Poncin, CEO of SIAL Canada.

9:05 - 10:00


Economic outlook for the food industry

Jean-Philippe Gervais, 

The economic performance of the Canadian food industry has been stellar in the last decade based on a number of indicators: rapid product innovation, strong growth in domestic sales and export market development. And then there’s been COVID. Food consumption patterns shifted, trade corridors got disrupted, commodity prices climbed and labour shortages turned more acute. But the underlying drivers of success in the food industry are still present - relentless efforts to meet evolving consumer fold preferences, thirst for product and process innovations and an uncompromised focus on quality. What kind of performance should we expect from the Canadian food industry going forward? This presentation reviews the economic trends and variables that determine a) the investment context for innovation; b) competitive pressures along the agri-food supply chain; and c) consumer food purchasing decisions.


10:10 - 10:50


Twenty Years of Innovation: looking back to the past to understand the present and prepare for the future

Dana McCauley,  Isabelle Marquis, 

In honour of SIAL Canada’s 20th Anniversary, Dana McCauley and Isabelle Marquis, co-presidents of the SIAL Innovation Awards Jury, will review the major trends that produced disruptive products that impacted the Canadian food business over the last two decades. Join them on a fast-paced trip down memory lane as these two innovation pros compare notes and share their perspectives on the how and why these trends have evolved and continue to affect the food business today.


11:00 - 12:00


What’s Next? The Future of Food Innovation

Moderator: Dana McCauley

Isabelle Marquis,  Cher Mereweather,  Sylvain Charlebois,  Dan Clapson, 

What products will be in grocery carts in 2030? And will we still use grocery carts in 2030 or will all groceries be purchased online? Although no one can answer these specific questions today, business leaders need information to create innovation strategies that will prepare their businesses to be ready for whatever the future holds. That’s why SIAL Canada has invited three of Canada’s most respected food industry professionals to share their expert insights on the future of food innovation. This lively discussion, followed by a Q&A session, will reveal the market drivers and consumer needs that will impact food industry innovation in the years to come.


12:10 - 1:00



Francis Parisien, 

Canadians want to eat healthfully. And it’s this intention to eat better that should serve as a guide for food and beverage companies into 2022 and beyond. But we’re all human, and that means we don’t always do as we say. The gap is real. Companies need to evolve and maneuvre to bridge the gap between what people want and what stands in the way of following through on those wants. If consumers have an intent to change, even at a subconscious or subliminal level, marketers need to do everything they can to transform that intention into action.


1:00 - 1:05


Unveiling of the 2021 Alizés Awards finalists

Martin Lavoie, 

Proud successor to the Canadian Export Business Award, granted by the Agri-Food Export Group for almost 15 years, the Alizés Awards, highlight the excellence of the work accomplished by Canadian agri-food compagnies that have distinguished themselves in international markets.


1:05 - 1:10


Closing of #SIALCanadaConnect

Closing message by Xavier Poncin, CEO of SIAL Canada and launch of SIAL Canada 2022


Jean-Philippe Gervais

Vice-President and Chief Economist, FCC

Dana McCauley

Chief Experience Officer, Canadian Food Innovation Network

Isabelle Marquis

Senior Food Strategist

Dr. Sylvain Charlebois

Professor in Food Distribution and Policy at Dalhousie University

Cher Mereweather

Founder and CEO, Provision Coalition Inc.

Dan Clapson

The Globe and Mail restaurant critic for the Canadian Prairies and Eat North co-founder

Francis Parisien

SMB Leader - NielsenIQ Canada

Martin Lavoie

Chief Executive Officer, Group Export Agri-Food


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