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CHFA West Conference Information

   February 20 - 22, 2020   |     Open to all CHFA West attendees

Conference sessions are open to all registrants unless identified as Member-Only with the leaf icon. If you are interested in attending one of the Member-Only sessions but aren’t yet a member of CHFA, please contact us today at info@chfa.ca or call 416.497.6939 / 1 800.661.4510.

CHFA West 2020 is the hub of knowledge in the Natural Health Products and Organic industry. We aim to design an experience where attendees meet their goals and go back to work with inspiration, new ideas and cutting edge information.

Conference Schedule

Click on a date below to view the sessions available. Click on a session to view its details.

10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

12:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.

CHFA Members and Associates Only. $99 (lunch and afternoon break included)
Room 109-110

Join us on Thursday, February 20, 2020 for our afternoon regulatory forum! We will be providing you with updates and information from speakers belonging to various departments and directorates within Health Canada.

Speakers from the Natural and Non-prescription Health Products Directorate will provide information on the current Self-Care products Framework, Plain Language Labelling as well as updates on other timely projects underway within the department. Next, the Food and Drugs Act Liaison Office will address their role regarding natural health products (NHPs).

After the break, we will hear from the Food Directorate about supplemented foods, Health Canada’s Healthy Eating Strategy, and mandate priorities for the regulation of food. To end the afternoon, we will hear from a representative from the Regulatory Operations and Enforcement Branch. This session will focus on the current Compliance Monitoring Project and NHP manufacturing site visit findings, as well as some news from the recent performance NHP testing.

Attend this session to remain current on all of these important topics and find out what might be in store for the industry! As our industry continues to evolve, these sessions are a must-attend for any business in the natural health and food sector.

Please note that topics and speakers are subject to change.

Click here to register for CHFA West. Click here for the draft agenda.

Sponsored by:

  • regulatory forum sponsor- CAPRA
  • regulatory forum sponsor - MCS associates
8:30 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.
CHFA Members and Associates FREE | Non-Members $20
Room 208-209

WOW or waste: How are you spending your marketing dollars? The money, time and energy you spend should put lots of money in the bank, pull new customers through the door, and generate excitement about your store. Here are a few things you’ll learn:

  • How a simple gift certificate can be used to get people excited about your store and in the door.
  • A killer promotion idea that generated over $100,000 for a small independent retailer. You can use it too!
  • How to get other businesses to share their customer lists with you.
  • The secret to turn those pesky donation requests into money in the bank. You’re going to love this one!
  • You can easily double, triple or multiply by 10 the effectiveness of your efforts to get new customers by using the techniques and concepts outlined in this session.

CHFA West 2020 speaker Bob Negen

Bob Negen, co-founder of WhizBang! Retail Training, is a professional retail speaker, consultant, business coach, and author. Bob motivates and trains independent retailers to improve and grow their businesses with practical, actionable tactics and strategies. He speaks to local independent business owners in their own language using real world retail experience and humorous stories from the trenches.

From quilters and crafters, gift stores, clothing boutiques, to pet supply stores, Bob’s expertise gives measurable results. As a retailer Bob turned a single kite store into an award winning multi-million dollar toy store chain. Now he uses his three decades of retail experience to help store owners and managers learn the necessary business skills they need to succeed in today’s economy.


8:30 a.m. – 10:00 a.m
CHFA Members and Associates $15 | Non-Members $30
Room 208-209

A Conscious Brand is one that actively and intentionally nurtures positive values, relationships, and experiences with all stakeholders. It values people and purpose through the same lens as profit, and in turn, works to amplify customer loyalty, innovation, differentiation, employee morale, recruitment, productivity and organizational agility.

This 90 minute interactive workshop will help you dive into building a Conscious Brand (beyond just sustainability) for your business. Limited to 60 participants, this workshop will be most valuable to ‘C’ourageous leaders who want to know the ‘T’ruth about their purpose-driven brand, owners and/or managers of supplier companies, but will also be valuable for “sustainability champions” (maximum of two people per organization).

Bio coming soon.


10:00 a.m. – 10:30 a.m.

10:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.
CHFA Members and Associates FREE | Non-Members $20
Room 212

What stands in the way of a legal market for cannabidiol (CBD) in natural health products (NHPs)?

What does current research say about the potential to use CBD as a health product? What approach are other countries taking to regulate CBD, and do we run the risk of losing Canada’s first-mover advantage on this growing market opportunity?

Join us on Friday, February 21, 2020 for an informative panel that will discuss various barriers and opportunities related to a potential market for CBD in NHPs. Deepak Anand, Co-Founder and CEO of Materia Ventures, will provide an international regulatory perspective on CBD and discuss the future growth potential of CBD markets across the globe. Robert Laprairie, Assistant Professor, College of Pharmacy and Nutrition at the University of Saskatchewan, will address the potential therapeutic value of various cannabinoids, including CBD, and discuss the barriers that should be addressed to bring CBD to market in NHPs. If you’re at all curious about the future market for CBD, and have a question you’d like to ask one of these experts, this is a session you won’t want to miss!


10:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.
CHFA Members and Associates FREE | Non-Members $20
Room 212

Great managers know which conversations to be in with their team and when. In this session, you’ll learn about the six stages of the talent life-cycle to better manage your staff. You will leave with:

  • increased awareness of the entire employee experience from before hiring them to after they leave;
  • new techniques to manage the hiring and onboarding process;
  • a fresh take on creating a talent pipeline within your organization;
CHFA West 2020 speaker Matt Corker

Matt Corker is the CEO of The Corker Co and creator of The Manager Start Line, an online training program designed to take leaders’ people management skills to the next level. He holds an MBA from the Copenhagen Business School, is a certified international yoga teacher and author, and loves sharing that extra scoop of ice cream with the love of his life.


11:45 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
CHFA Members and Associates $40 | Non-Members $60
Room 211

Join Trend Hunter, the world's largest, most popular trend community, as they inspect the motivations behind consumers’ purchasing behaviors, and what it means to offer a purposeful retail experience. Find out how a need for eco-consciousness, experience, and curation has changed the world of retail.

You and your team will walk away with a more customer-centric view of retail, as well as with:

  • a definitive picture of the Future Retail Space
  • three key areas to focus on when aiming to create the future of retail
  • brainstorming questions to aid in encouraging innovation in your retail space
CHFA West 2020 speaker Ady Floyd

Ady is one of Trend Hunter's best Research Managers, advising dozens of top brands about innovation strategy, curating and customizing trend research to suit their needs. She has used her dynamic approach and multifaceted experience to run custom workshop sessions with brands like McDonald’s, SAP, Coca-Cola and Beam Suntory. She is Trend Hunter's lead keynote speaker on Innovation in Retail. To date, Ady has prepared over 500 custom research reports across all industries, for clients including: Panasonic, P&G, IMAX, MRV, Visa, Coca-Cola, Velux, Rich Products, Saatchi & Saatchi, Pier 1, Weight Watchers, McDonald's LEGO, Cirque du Solieil, Under Armour, SAP and Google.


1:15 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Open to all Retailers - FREE
Rooms 202, 203, 204, 205, 206, 207

Consumers repeatedly say that one of the main reasons they shop at independent health stores is the knowledge of the staff. Whether you’ve been selling natural health products for years or are new to the industry, educating yourself on popular products and trends will give you a competitive edge. You’ll be better able to serve your customers, feel confident in the information you are sharing and set your store apart from other retail outlets in your area.

These sessions are FREE to attend with your CHFA West trade show badge, so be sure to register today!

Click here for the detailed agenda.

Product Education Sessions are presented or sanctioned by CHFA Member companies. The views expressed are the responsibility of the presenting company and have not been reviewed by CHFA. CHFA is not responsible for any information or material provided by a member company. Topics and speakers subject to change.

1:15 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Open to all Suppliers - FREE
Room 210

Are you a manufacturer looking to improve sales and better support your team? Attend a service education session offered by exhibitors who provide business services to find out what else you could be doing to make your business grow!

Service Education Sessions are presented or sanctioned by CHFA Member companies. The views expressed are the responsibility of the presenting company and have not been reviewed by CHFA. CHFA is not responsible for any information or material provided by a member company. Topics and speakers subject to change.


4:15 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Working with Purity Life Health Products, a Natural Products Distributor in Canada

Dale Simmons and Mike Roberts
Presented by: Purity Life Health Products LP

Learn how working with Purity Life Health Products can help to grow your brand and gain distribution across Canada. Dale and Mike’s unique experience and background will provide insights and tips on how you can effectively work through a distributor to significantly grow your brand.

chfa west 2020 speaker Dale Simmons

Dale Simmons has over 9 years of distribution experience in Canada, primarily working to bring new brands into Purity Life. Prior to that he worked for several years in the retail sector of the natural products industry.

chfa west 2020 speaker Mike Roberts

Mike Roberts has held several positions with Purity Life over the past 15 years giving him experience in sales, marketing, purchasing, manufacturing and operations.


1:15 p.m. – 2:15 p.m.
CHFA Members and Associates FREE | Non-Members $10
Room 208 - 209

Shoppers don’t think being green is a fad anymore. Their attitudes are changing towards recycling, reusing and reducing. Customers are increasingly asking where products come from, who made them and what they are made from.

Join Barbara to learn what it means to be a green retailer and how to run a profitable business while taking on this enormous challenge. What changes to make and at what speed? What products to keep? Which ones to replace? How to maintain best margins and even increase sales? How fast should the transition to a greener store be? Barbara will provide answers to all these questions and more.

You have a Golden Green opportunity to become a leader and catalyst for the environment right from where you and your business are. Don’t miss this session to find out how.

CHFA West 2020 speaker Barbara Crowhurst

Barbara Crowhurst is CEO of Retail Makeover and North Americas’ Leading Retail Business Coach. She is also a writer, international speaker, trainer and retail store designer. Her comprehensive and detailed approach to retail comes from years of working in the industry. Her career has taken her from working with some of the largest corporate retail stores in North America to consulting with thousands of independent retail specialty stores. Barbara’s company is leading the way with innovative services such as retail business coaching sessions, one on one coaching and consulting by phone / Skype /FaceTime or in person. Web Design and IT services for retailers are headed by her partner Stephen Crowhurst.


1:15 p.m. – 2:15 p.m.
CHFA Members and Associates $15 | Non-Members $30
Room 208 - 209

Do you find yourself wondering if you require a Temporary Market Authorization Letter (TMAL) or a Natural Product Number (NPN) for your new product? Is your food novel? What about the added ingredients to flavour or sweeten your product – are they permissible in Canada?

Join us on Friday, February 21, 2020 for an interactive session with the Food Directorate. During the presentation, the rules and regulations that are currently in place for foods in Canada will be discussed. Key areas of focus will include the specific requirements for novel foods, supplemented foods and food additives. Participants will learn how to classify their unique and one of kind products and what guidance and regulations they need to reference to properly bring these products to the Canadian market. Attend this session to learn more and ask your questions – this is a must attend session for any business looking to introduce new or unique food products to the Canadian market.

Please note that topics and speakers are not final and are subject to change.


2:30 p.m. – 3:15 p.m.
CHFA Members and Associates FREE | Non-Members $20
Room 208 - 209

Learn five proven tips on how to use social media to increase brand recognition and build trust with customers. By increasing your brand exposure online, your product can more easily land in the baskets of loyal customers in-store. Come away with actionable items you can implement immediately to amplify your social media strategy.

CHFA West 2020 speaker Tara Clark

Tara Clark is the founder and CEO of Vancouver-based social media agency, Social T. She established the agency in 2010, and since has made her mark in digital marketing by consulting professional services, real estate, and the food and beverage industry on effective and efficient online practices. Tara’s passion for thinking differently and empowering others to think differently is the reason behind her entrepreneurial success. In addition to her business ventures, Tara travels the world inspiring audiences and educating businesses on how to elevate their brand online and off.


2:30 p.m. – 3:15 p.m.
CHFA Members and Associates FREE | Non-Members $20
Room 219

B Corps are companies that have attained a rigorous standard of environmental and social impact, as verified by the third-party verifier B Lab. Join Michelle Reid, Community Engagement and Activation Lead at B Lab, Canada to hear about the mission B Corps are working to achieve in using business as a force for good. There will be an overview of the community, some inspiring stories from entrepreneurs working in this space, and an outline of the process for certification - plus time for questions.

CHFA West 2020 conference speaker Michelle Reid

Michelle Reid supports the growth and nurturing of the B Corp movement in her role as the Community Engagement and Activation Lead for B Lab Canada, Michelle creates connections by building B Local Communities by providing resources and guidance to strengthen the B Economy. Michelle is passionate about the local economy and the impact of local purchasing, and supports organizations such as Loco BC where she sits on the Board of Directors. Michelle’s dedication to giving back to the community extends beyond her own weekly volunteer activities to include creating volunteering programs for B Corps where companies can give back to their local communities. Michelle is constantly striving to ensure that companies are using the best practices for their employees, the environment and the community they reside in and takes great pride in being able to support the redefining of success in business.


3:15 p.m. – 3:45 p.m.

3:45 p.m. – 4:45 p.m.
CHFA Members and Associates FREE | Non-Members $20
Room 208 - 209

A top-notch staff is an independent retailer’s biggest competitive edge. The people on your team are face to face with your customers, either giving them an experience that brings them back or leaves them cold. A great retail staff does not happen by accident!

You will learn:

  • The tricks to finding the best, most highly qualified candidates.
  • How to develop interview questions that separate the potential superstars from the run-of-the-mill.
  • How to interview skillfully.
  • How to consistently bring your new hires on board correctly.
  • And much, much more!
CHFA West 2020 speaker Bob Negen

Bob Negen, co-founder of WhizBang! Retail Training, is a professional retail speaker, consultant, business coach, and author. Bob motivates and trains independent retailers to improve and grow their businesses with practical, actionable tactics and strategies. He speaks to local independent business owners in their own language using real world retail experience and humorous stories from the trenches.

From quilters and crafters, gift stores, clothing boutiques, to pet supply stores, Bob’s expertise gives measurable results. As a retailer Bob turned a single kite store into an award winning multi-million dollar toy store chain. Now he uses his three decades of retail experience to help store owners and managers learn the necessary business skills they need to succeed in today’s economy.


3:45 p.m. – 4:45 p.m.
CHFA Members and Associates $15 | Non-Members $30
Room 219

Social media and social networks are becoming vital sources for prospecting, lead generation and client engagement. In fact, a recent study of over 500 sales professionals found that 72.6% of sales professionals who used social media outperformed their peers who didn’t. This, of course, is only true if you have a solid strategy and process to use social media as a tool – not a distraction.

In this session Shane Gibson will share with you:

  • The Rules of Engagement in social media for sales professionals.
  • How to define and hone in on your target “nano-markets” online.
  • How your social graph impacts your ability to close deals and generate leads.
  • How to maximize your LinkedIn profile so that it attracts clients.
  • How becoming an expert content curator can build credibility and influence on LinkedIn.
  • Key social search and social media monitoring tools to find opportunities and gather business intelligence.
  • How tools like Hootsuite and social CRM can pull all your social networking together and make it easier and profitable to manage.
CHFA West 2020 speaker Shane Gibson

Shane Gibson is an international speaker and author who has addressed over 100,000 people on stages in North America, Southern Africa, India, Asia and South America. He is a widely sought after thought leader on the topics of social selling and digital marketing.

Shane’s books include “Sociable! How Social Media is Turning Sales and Marketing Upside Down”, “Closing Bigger: the Field Guide to Closing Bigger Deals” and “Guerrilla Social Media Marketing”, co-authored with Jay Conrad Levinson. Shane is also Canada’s only Guerrilla Marketing Master Trainer personally trained and mentored by Jay Conrad Levinson.

Blogging since 2002 and podcasting since 2004, Shane drives the majority of his business from social media. He has been published in numerous publications as an authority on the topics of leadership, marketing, social media, and sales performance. Some of these publications include CMA Magazine, the Financial Post, the Globe and Mail, and Profit Magazine. He is also a regular contributor to the Business in Vancouver digital edition.

When he’s not working or tweeting you can find Shane hiking or skiing in British Columbia’s Coast Mountain range with his family.


5:00 p.m. – 6:15 p.m.
Open to all CHFA West attendees
Room 212

Want to get an early look at some of the new products coming to market? CHFA Launch Pad is a fun and informative contest that provides eight lucky finalists the opportunity to pitch their products to a panel of judges in “Dragons’ Den” style. The first 50 retailers in attendance will receive a gift bag that includes samples of the products being presented.

And, one lucky retailer who pre-registers by January 31, will be selected to participate on the judging panel and will receive $200 cash!

Click here for more information on the Launch Pad contest.

Presented in partnership with:

logo for CHFA partner - alive publishing group

Sponsored by:

  • launchpad sponsor- nature's path
  • launchpad sponsor - purity life
  • launchpad sponsor - UNFI

6:15 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.

 CHFA Members Only. FREE
Room 211

Join us for drinks and canapés as we celebrate the opening of CHFA West 2020 with our members. Connect with your industry colleagues and meet CHFA staff that you talk to year-round. This is the VIP way to kick off your trade show weekend!

8:30 a.m. – 9:30 a.m.

 CHFA Members Only. FREE
Room 211

Begin your trade show day with a hearty breakfast and the comradery of your fellow CHFA members at the Member Forum Breakfast. This is your chance to share your thoughts and insights with your peers. It’s also a great opportunity to expand your network with other business leaders who will be in attendance. CHFA’s Board of Directors along with President Helen Long encourage all members to join in what is sure to be a lively discussion and great networking session. We hope to see you there!


5:00 p.m. – 5:45 p.m.
(Cocktail Reception)
5:45 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.
(Awards Presentation)

Open to all CHFA West attendees
Pan Pacific Crystal Pavilion Ballroom (Hotel Lobby Level)

Join us as we celebrate the outstanding commitment and achievements of our peers. Beginning with a reception at the Pan Pacific Hotel, we’ll move into the beautiful Crystal Pavilion Ballroom to enjoy light appetizers during the awards presentation. We offer open seating to all registered participants of CHFA West, so be sure to arrive early for the most popular event of the weekend.

  •  | Recommended for all registrants wishing to expand their knowledge
  •  | Recommended for personnel working in a retail environment
  •  | Recommended for manufacturers, distributors and business services
  •  | CHFA Member and/or Associate only event, check description for details