“Tackling today’s fresh food challenges”

Thursday, April 27, 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.

Half Your Plate Session for Health Professionals is hosted in conjunction with Canadian Produce Marketing Association's (CPMA) Annual Convention and Trade Show which will be held at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre in Toronto.

This session provides regulated health professionals with key tools and education to help support consumers to fill half their plates with fruits and veggies. With a focus on tackling today's fresh food challenges, attendees will learn from nutrition and industry experts about trending topics that impact the health and nutrition of consumers.

Light snacks and lunch will be served.

Who can register for this session?

This session is intended for dietitians, physicians, nurses, and pharmacists.
If upon review you do not meet the criteria as indicated above, your registration fees will be refunded. 

Spots are limited

Register today Agenda

Cost: $30 + tax

Presentations and activities

Fresh food prescription (Rx) programs: Their role in improving food security

Speaker: Abby Richter, MAN, RD

Picture1Imagine if doctors and health practitioners prescribed fresh fruits and veggies to their patients? Believe it or not - some already do in Canada. In this presentation, Abby will speak to the history of food prescribing and highlight what a food prescribing program looks like in her practice at the Guelph Community Health Centre and The SEED. Preliminary research results will be shared, along with valuable feedback from participants. Come away with strategies on how to make this novel concept work in your community.

Asian veggies and fruits: Taste, health benefits and uses

Speaker: Michelle Jaelin, RD

Picture2b Have you ever been curious about those unique produce items in your grocery store? This presentation will highlight different types of Asian fruits and vegetables, their flavours, nutritional benefits and how to prepare and use them. Leave with greater knowledge about Asian produce and cultural competence when serving diverse clients. 

Food prices, waste, and sustainability: What is the industry doing? 

Produce industry panel

Desiree Nielsen

Desiree Nielsen, RD

Matt Aronson

Matthew Aronson,
Chief Revenue Officer, Verdant Technologies

Matt Ecker

Matthew Ecker,
VP Sales & Marketing, Vineland Growers

Michelle McMillan

Michèle McMillan,
Director, Retail Sales, Ippolito Fruit & Produce

Inflation and climate change are not only impacting the daily lives of consumers, but also industries. In this panel discussion moderated by dietitian Desiree Nielsen, you’ll hear from some of the top produce industry experts on how they navigate cost increases, food waste, and environmental issues in this rapidly changing business environment. You’ll have the chance to ask any pressing questions directly to our experts, and gain insight into what happens behind the scenes.

Peer-to-peer activity: Tackling nutrition barriers together

No matter what sector you’re in, we all have a common goal, and that is to improve the healthy eating patterns of Canadians. In this peer-to-peer activity, health professionals will work with others in similar areas of practice, to tackle common fruit and vegetable consumption barriers and strategies on how to overcome them.

CPMA Trade Show ($400 value)


Explore the largest fresh fruits and vegetable trade show in Canada! Discover new fruit and vegetable products, like air-fryer veggie kits, veggie-based pastas, and living lettuce. Get a glimpse at how greenhouses, field-grown farms and packaging facilities operate. Meet the hard-working people who help provide Canadians with fresh fruits and veggies. You’ll be amazed at how much you’ll learn. Participants will be offered an introductory guided tour and can sample an array of tasty fruits and veggies.


Thursday, April 27
Location (MTCC South Building)
8:30 a.m. -9:00 a.m.
Level 600
8:30 a.m. -9:00 a.m.
Coffee, tea, and light snacks
Nutrition booths
Room 801
9:00 a.m. -9:10 a.m.
Opening remarks
Jen Ong Tone, MHSc, RD
Room 801
9:10 a.m. -10:10 a.m.
Fresh food prescription (Rx) programs: Their role in improving food security
Introduction: Dr. Stephanie Liu, MD, M.Sc
Speaker: Abby Richter, MAN, RD
Room 801
10:10 a.m. -11:05 a.m.
Asian veggies and fruits: Taste, health benefits and uses!
Introduction: Desiree Nielsen, RD
Speaker: Michelle Jaelin, RD
Room 801
11:05 a.m. -11:20 a.m.
Break and nutrition booths
Room 801
11:20 a.m. -12:00 p.m.
Peer-to-peer activity: Tackling nutrition barriers together
Jen Ong Tone, MHSc, RD
Room 801
12:00 p.m.-1:00 p.m.
Nutrition booths
Room 801
1:00 p.m.-2:00 p.m.
Food prices, waste, and sustainability: What is industry doing?
Introduction: Marie-Ève Caplette, RD
Moderator: Desiree Nielsen, RD
Produce panel
Room 801
2:00 p.m. -4:00 p.m.
CPMA Trade Show with guided tour
Hall D/E (Tradeshow floor)
4:00 p.m. -4:30 p.m.
Closing remarks and door prizes
Learning lounges in Booth 100 in Hall D/E (Tradeshow floor)

Contact Jen Ong Tone MHSc, RD, dietitian at CPMA: jongtone@cpma.ca