"Attending the CHFA trade show is a double win. It's a great opportunity to see a lot of product in one place but even more important are the networking opportunities!"

Frank Sarro, Fresh & Bulk Foods Category Manager
Community Natural Foods Ltd

 Indicates sessions open to CHFA Members and/or Associates Only. Check description below for details.

Thursday, September 14

1:00 p.m. 4:30 p.m. Regulatory Forum

Friday, September 15

8:00 a.m. 9:30 a.m.   Why Natural Health Retailers Are the Envy of Their Competitors : Keynote & Breakfast
9:40 a.m. 10:30 a.m.   Understanding Consumer Decision Making: The Retail Lab
10:45 a.m. 11:45 a.m.   Marketing to Moms
10:45 a.m. 11:45 a.m. Your Liability For Product Claims
11:30 a.m. 1:15 p.m.   Fortify Your Life: A Case for Natural Health Products with Tieraona Low Dog, MD
1:15 p.m. 6:00 p.m.   Product Education Sessions (PES)
1:15 p.m. 3:00 p.m. Food Forum
3:15 p.m. 4:15 p.m.   Is DNA Testing the Future of NHPs?
4:30 p.m. 5:30 p.m.   Gaps in the Canadian Organic Regime:
Why Can't Natural Health and Beauty Products Use the Canada Organic Logo?
5:30 p.m. 6:00 p.m.   Break Sponsored by Nature's Path
6:00 p.m. 7:00 p.m. Member Welcome Reception

Saturday, September 16

8:00 a.m. 9:50 a.m. Member Round Table and Breakfast With the CHFA Board and Senior Staff
5:00 p.m. 7:00 p.m.   Industry Achievement Reception and Awards

Sunday, September 17

8:30 a.m. 10:00 a.m.   Boulder Brands Breakfast

CHFA East Trade Show   (located in Halls D, E, and F)

Saturday, September 16 10:00 a.m. 5:00 p.m.
Sunday, September 17 10:00 a.m. 5:00 p.m.

Boasting more than 850 exhibitors, CHFA East provides retailers and natural health practitioners with a one-stop-shopping experience.

Whether you are looking for the latest products, wanting to compare brands, or simply want to connect with industry experts, look no further than this event.

  • Meet face-to-face with manufacture and distributors
  • Get answers to your questions so you can make informed buying decisions
  • Establish relationships that will help you improve your business

Attendee Registration Desk Hours:
Thursday, September 14                10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Friday, September 15                      7:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Saturday, September 16                 7:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Sunday, September 17                    9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

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Thursday, September 14 Sessions

The Regulatory Forum   (located in Room 714)

Regulatory Forum Presentations 1:00 p.m. 3:00 p.m.
Break 3:00 p.m. 3:30 p.m.
Members Only Forum 3:30 p.m. 4:30 p.m.


If you manufacture, distribute, sell or import natural health products (NHPs) in Canada, don’t miss CHFA's information-packed Regulatory Forum to stay up to date with the most relevant topics affecting the industry. This is your exclusive opportunity to hear from Health Canada's senior officials, ask questions and share feedback on how the changing regulatory framework in Canada could impact you. The Natural and Non-prescription Health Products Directorate (NNHPD) and the Regulatory Operations and Regions Branch (RORB) are confirmed to present, and will provide more information on the self-care products proposal, as well as on Health Canada's compliance and enforcement initiatives. Don't miss this important session!

 Open to CHFA Members and Associates Only. $35.

Sponsored by:

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Friday, September 15 Sessions

Why Natural Health Retailers Are the Envy of Their Competitors   (located in Room 701A)

Breakfast 8:00 a.m. 8:30 a.m.
Presentation by Ryan Benn, President of alive Publishing Group 8:30 a.m. 9:30 a.m.

Understanding the key differentiators that can ensure a profitable, long term business model for the natural health retailer—including a toolkit and playbook for success. Join in an insightful conversation with Ryan Benn to discuss what Natural Health Retailers are doing right, what they are doing wrong, and what they need to improve on to increase their business and stay ahead of FDM (or competition). Over the past six months, alive has been polling the alive Listens reader panel to gain insights into what our readers are looking for in the stores that they shop in and to compile a playbook of actionable tools to ensure the success of your Natural Health business. .

Ryan Benn became President of Teldon Media Group in 2012, and since 2005 Ryan has also been the President of alive Publishing Group where he continues to serve today. Over the past twelve years, alive Publishing has introduced numerous new products and services making it a multi-faceted media company. With the launch of alive USA, Australia, alive@work, alive Studios and the alive Summit, Ryan and his team have taken a trusted Canadian brand and transformed it into a global powerhouse with an audience of over 30 million readers around the world.

Ryan's accomplishments have been recognized with several honours, including Marketing Magazine's Top 30 Marketers under 30; a BIV Top 40 under 40 accolade; a fellowship at the Ivey School of Business, and the BCIT Distinguished Alumni Award for Entrepreneurial Innovation, the youngest recipient to ever receive this award.

Ryan holds an Honours Marketing Diploma in Entrepreneurship from BCIT, where he was awarded the BCIT Top Graduate Award (School of Business). He serves on numerous not-for-profit boards and several grass-roots initiatives including - current - Canadian Organic Trade Association (Vice Chair), Organic Trade Association, A Better Life Foundation, YPO BC Executive, Magazines Canada (Director) - past - Inspire Health (Chair of the Board), Camp Kerry Society, Global Mothers, and the Canadian Health Food Association (Vice Chair).

CHFA Members and Associates $10 / Non-Members $25

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Understanding Consumer Decision-Making: The Retail Lab   (located in Room 716)

Presentation by Mike von Massow, Associate Professor, University of Guelph 9:40 a.m. 10:30 a.m.

The consumer decision process is complex. The Longo's Food Retail Laboratory provides a one-of-a-kind facility to undertake research to gain insight into how consumers process information and make decisions in a real shopping context. Mike will talk about the lab and some of the research they are doing to build a more comprehensive understanding of consumer decision-making and retail behaviour with respect to food.

Mike von Massow is an Associate Professor in the Department of Food, Agricultural and Resource Economics at the University of Guelph. Mike worked in industry for 15 years before pursuing a PhD in Business and joining the University. His primary research focus is consumer food demand and the implications for production and value chain structure. Mike leads the research under the Longo's Food Retail Lab with a focus on understanding how people make food purchase decisions.

CHFA Members and Associates FREE / Non-Members $10

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Marketing to Moms   (located in Room 714B)

Panel Discussion by Annalea Krebs and Karlene Karst 10:45 a.m. 11:45 a.m.

Today, moms are more connected, more influential, and have more access to research and information than ever before. With the help of Google, blogs and social media, moms, who are estimated to make over 80 per cent of the purchasing decisions in a household, are the most highly sought-after group for many marketers. So how can you most effectively reach this target audience? Bring your questions and ideas to this informative and interactive panel discussion, where you will hear directly from expert marketers on how they have successfully engaged this audience.

As Founder and CEO of Social Nature, Annalea Krebs represents an online community of 200,000+ Everyday Influencers that love to inspire their friends/family to #trynatural products. Over 60% of Social Nature's community are Moms, eager to share products they've tried and loved with their friends on social media. Annalea believes that the most powerful marketing tactic is word-of-mouth. Annalea has been profiled in Marketing Magazine for her expertise on marketing to Millennial Moms, and was selected by Entrepreneur Magazine, as one of the top '25 Inspiring Entrepreneurs Under 40 Who Are Creating the Next Big Thing.'

Karlene Karst is a registered Dietitian, author, and founder of Sea-licious omega-3 oils. She is a passionate and enthusiastic individual who speaks at education events across North America. Karlene is a frequent guest on radio and TV programs including CTV Morning Live, Global, Breakfast TV, and Access Hollywood. You can follow Karlene and her healthy tips and family-friendly recipes on IG and FB. Karlene resides in beautiful Port Moody, BC with her husband and 3 children.

CHFA Members and Associates FREE / Non-Members $10

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Your Liability For Product Claims (located in 714A)

Presentation by Lewis Retik and Janet Feasby 10:45 a.m. 11:45 a.m.

Selling a product that has an NPN doesn't mean you're in the clear. This session will look at the advertising and sale of NHPs by distributors and retailers. Ensuring the product has a licence is only the first step to marketing a product. Lewis Retik will discuss the pitfalls that can happen at any stage from distribution to the customer in-store experience, while Janet Feasby will share her insights into consumer complaints about retail advertising and complying with the key clauses of the Canadian Code of Advertising Standards.

Lewis Retik is the leader of the Advertising & Product Regulatory group and co-leader of the Food & Beverage group at Gowling WLG. As a partner in Gowling WLG's Ottawa office, he practices primarily in the area of product regulatory law, specifically in the area of food, NHPs, and cosmetics. Lewis' practice includes regulatory, distribution, manufacturing, advertising, packaging and labelling. He is often responsible for working with clients to develop marketing strategies and packaging and advertising designs that are both consumer friendly and compliant. Lewis regularly advises clients with respect to regulator enforcement. In addressing client issues, Lewis interacts with senior officials of government within such departments as Health Canada, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency, and Environment Canada.

As Vice President, Standards with ASC, Janet Feasby is responsible for the administration of the "Canadian Code of Advertising Standards" and the complaint procedures under the Code, and is a member of ASC's Executive Team. She is also the administrator of the "Canadian Children's Food & Beverage Advertising Initiative" (CAI) - a voluntary initiative of Canada's leading food and beverage companies that are committed to promoting and supporting healthy dietary choices and healthy lifestyles to children under 12 years of age. Janet holds an LL.B. from Queen's University and is a member of the Canadian Bar Association.

 Open to members and associates only

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Fortify Your Life: A Case for Natural Health Products with Tieraona Low Dog, MD
Presented by MegaFood and TallGrass   (located in Room 718B)

Lunch 11:30 a.m. 12:00 p.m.
Presentation 12:00 p.m. 1:00 p.m.
Q & A 1:00 p.m. 1:15 p.m.

Join Tieraona Low Dog, MD, for an illuminating talk on the compelling need for supplementation in today's world. Dr. Low Dog will highlight research on the specific shortfalls of the North American diet, the declining nutritional value of our food, and provide guidance on what you need to know to recommend the right multivitamin for your customers.

In addition to being an integrative medical doctor, best selling author and prolific speaker, Dr. Tieraona Low Dog is an internationally recognized expert in the fields of integrative medicine, herbal medicine and dietary supplementation. Dr. Low Dog's expertise and passion for educating on the benefits of nutrition and integrative health has also made her a frequent guest on The Dr. Oz Show and NPR's People's Pharmacy.

She has served as Chair for dietary supplement/botanical panels for the past 16 years at the United States Pharmacopeia (USP), the scientific organization entrusted with setting standards for identity, strength, quality and purity for medicines and dietary supplements. Dr. Low Dog has also served on the Scientific Advisory Council for the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH), the U.S. Federal Government's lead agency for scientific research on the diverse medical and health care systems, practices, and products that are not generally considered part of conventional medicine.

Please join us and enjoy an engaging lunchtime discussion that will educate and re-energize leaving you ready meet the changing needs of your customers.

This session is open exclusively to retailers.

Sponsored by:

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The Food Forum   (located in Room 714B)

Presentation by Health Canada and the Canadian Food Inspection Agency 1:15 p.m. 3:00 p.m.

We are pleased to announce CHFA's first Food Forum, taking place this year. Join us to learn more about the many important regulatory initiatives taking place in the food sector. This session will provide information on Health Canada's Healthy Eating Strategy and the Canadian Food Inspection Agency's (CFIA) Safe Food for Canadians Regulations (SFCR). Health Canada's Food Directorate is confirmed to present on changes to food labelling and CFIA will discuss the new requirements for food businesses mandated under SFCR.

 Open to Members and Associates Only - FREE

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Is DNA Testing the Future of NHPs?   (located in Room 714A)

Presentation by Dr. Steven Newmaster and Dr. Subramanyam Ragupathy 3:15 p.m. 4:15 p.m.

The NHP Research Alliance is a brand-new initiative founded by Dr. Steven Newmaster and Dr. Subramanyam Ragupathy from the University of Guelph to advance the use of DNA testing and build an extensive biological reference material library that supports the sustainability and authenticity of botanical ingredients. In this interactive presentation, Dr. Newmaster and Dr. Ragupathy will be demonstrating TRU-ID's (an international certification program for authenticating natural ingredients in NHPs and food) handheld diagnostic tools by testing an NHP product during the session. Register for this presentation to learn more about the future of quality assurance testing, and new technological advancements that will make it quick and affordable to test botanicals to improve quality compliance in NHPs and any product that contains herbal ingredients. To see the full session abstract, click here.

Dr. Steven Newmaster and Dr. Subramanyam Ragupathy both attained their PhDs in botany and genetics and have been working together for over 15 years at the University of Guelph. Together they have published over 100 publications including books and scientific journal publications on plant diversity, ethnobotany and natural health products. Their research has identified a number of problems with the mislabeling of botanical ingredients in food and natural health products for which they have developed disruptive biotechnology using molecular diagnostics to authenticate species ingredients. They are actively engaged in the development of policy on international trade of botanical products including product authentication and certification standards within the food and natural product industry within Canada, USA, E.U. and Asia. Dr Newmaster is a co-founder and CSO of TRU-ID, which is an international certification program for authentic natural ingredients in food and NHPs registered in Canada, USA and the E.U. Including 28 countries. Steve and Ragu are the Directors of the newly established NHP Research Alliance at the University of Guelph. NHP Alliance members share a common belief in the benefits of sustainable botanicals, which includes assurance that natural herbal products and supplements are authentic and of good value for our health and well-being.

CHFA Members and Associates FREE / Non-Members $20

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Gaps in the Canadian Organic Regime:
Why Can't Natural Health and Beauty Products Use the Canada Organic Logo?   (located in Room 714B)

Presentation by Canada Organic Trade Association 4:30 p.m. 5:30 p.m.

In 2009, the Canadian Organic Regime (COR) was introduced to regulate the organic industry. As it was designed, these standards only cover food, feed and seed. This means that all beauty products, textiles and natural health products (NHPs) cannot be certified organic to COR, and thus may not use the Canada Organic logo. This session will bring together organic and natural health businesses and leaders to discuss this issue, its implications and how it could be changed, using the U.S. as an example.

The session will present key industry insights through the following:

  • Overview of the Canadian regulatory environment;
  • U.S. case study;
  • Implications for Canadian businesses; and,
  • Open dialogue on next steps.


Free to all attendees

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This Break is Sponsored by:

Member Welcome Reception   (located in Room 716)

Reception 6:00 p.m. 7:00 p.m.

Join us on Friday, September 15 at 6:00 p.m. as we toast the opening of CHFA East 2017 with complimentary beverages and light appetizers. This event has become a popular meeting place for CHFA Members from across the country to connect for their trade show weekend. We'll give you a quick update on CHFA's latest activities and our staff will be on hand to personally welcome you to the event.

 Open to members and associates only

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Saturday, September 16 Sessions

Member Round Table and Breakfast With the CHFA Board and Senior Staff   (located in Room 713)

Breakfast 8:00 a.m. 9:50 a.m.

Want to get your trade show day off to a healthy start? Join CHFA’s Board of Directors, along with President Helen Long and Vice President David Clark, at the CHFA Member Breakfast held on Saturday, September 16, from 8:00 a.m. to 9:50 a.m. This session gives you the opportunity to speak with the Board members about key issues that matter to you, and help as CHFA plans for 2018. We’ll be serving up a selection of healthy, organic delights, paired with vibrant conversations and a side of comradery. It’s a great opportunity to share your thoughts with CHFA’s Board and senior staff, and mingle with fellow members before hitting the show floor for day one of CHFA East!

 CHFA Members Only. FREE

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CHFA Industry Achievement Reception and Awards   (located in Hall G)

Awards Reception 5:00 p.m. 5:45 p.m.
Awards Presentation 6:00 p.m. 7:00 p.m.

Join us on Saturday, September 16, as we celebrate the outstanding commitment and achievements of our peers. The evening begins at 5:00 p.m. with a complimentary wine reception before we move into Hall G for the award presentations starting at 6:00 p.m. Light appetizers will be served to tide you over to your dinner. We offer open seating to all registered participants of CHFA East. Be sure to arrive early, as this is our most popular event of the weekend.

Open to all registered participants of CHFA East.

Sponsored by:  

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Sunday, September 17 Sessions

Boulder Brands Breakfast   (located in Room 713)

Breakfast 8:30 a.m. 10:00 a.m.

Start your morning off right at CHFA East! Get your fuel for the day while connecting with your peers and clients at the Boulder Brands Breakfast. This breakfast is free for all attendees and exhibitors of the show. Gluten-free and vegan items will be featured along with a regular breakfast offering. Enjoy Udi's gluten-free muffins or bagels, Glutino breads, English muffins, or oven-baked bars! Top them with your favourite Earth Balance spreads and nut butters! Don't miss out.

Open to all registered participants of CHFA East.

Sponsored by:

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