The 127th IARW-WFLO Convention is dubbed the No. 1 event for executives of temperature-controlled warehousing and logistics companies and industry suppliers eager to advance the cold chain. And, this year, attendees will hone in on relevant advancements such as the future of atomically precise robotics for manufacturing, as well as learn more about how artificial intelligence (AI) and robotics address many of today’s labor issues.

The show, hosted by the Global Cold Chain Alliance (GCCA), Alexandria, Va., takes place April 29-May 2 at the The Ritz-Carlton in Amelia Island, Fla.

It kicks off with keynote speaker Neil Jacobstein, chair of the Artificial Intelligence and Robotics Track at Singularity University, Moffett Field, Calif. Jacobstein will dive into the technical, business, environmental and ethical implications of AI and robotics and how they will transform the cold chain.

Tom Furphy, chief executive officer and managing director of Consumer Equity Partners, Seattle, Wash., will discuss how retail evolution shapes the cold chain. Hear his thoughts on the implication of the Whole Foods purchase, and how disruptions to retail will continue to drive producers and consumers to e-commerce, thus impacting the perishables industry.

Chad Whyte, vice president of logistics for Pinnacle Foods, Parsippany, N.J., provides perspective from a processor, discussing Pinnacle’s strategic goals, anticipated trends and business challenges, and offering perspective from a customer of the third-party logistics industry.

Scott Stratten, president of UnMarketing Inc., talks about engaging a company’s audience in today’s business-to-business world. Learn how to stay in front of partners and potential clients through “unconventional marketing” methods, and how customer service and business ethics speak louder than any billboard.

Pioneers in the industry. Gone are the Focus Sessions and in its place is Cool Pioneers, where IARW warehouse members share their innovation secrets to tackling human capital development, cost savings, time savings and more.

Peer-to-peer networking. Peer-to-peer executive discussions provide attendees a chance to share ideas, ask questions and solve problems with peers in a small group setting. A moderator guides the participants through questions submitted in advance, diving into the subjects that matter most to executives in the cold chain industry.


Technical sessions. Three industry thought leaders will deliver informative presentations on innovations in the cold storage industry, providing a high-level industry perspective on how their solutions, tools and/or technology can help support customers’ businesses.

State of the association. Join leadership, staff and board members to learn the latest developments to bring the IARW-WFLO Strategic Plan to fruition.