TopofPageMidwest Food Products Association News Bulletin  - January 2, 2018   
In This Issue
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Keeping Employees At Work Focus of MWFPA Wellness Seminar, January 25
On January 25, 2018, MWFPA will present,  Reversing Occupational Medicine - Keeping Your Employees at Work and Out of the Clinic.  The one day seminar will be held at the Wilderness Resort in Wisconsin Dells, WI.
 
The seminar, intended for safety, plant, and human resources managers in addition to safety team members, will provide attendees with cutting-edge concepts focusing on mitigating the causes of workplace injuries and preventing them from occurring.   
 
Attendees will hear from professionals on how to establish relationships with local medical providers, OSHA expectations for reporting and mitigating employee injuries, plus loss prevention strategies and the latest advancements in standing relief for employees.
 
This seminar was recommended by members of the MWFPA Safety Committee.  Reservations can be made by calling 608-253-9729.  Should you have any questions, please call Nick George or Brian Deschane at 608-255-9946.  For program and registration materials, click here.
 
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MWFPA Scholarship Applications Now Open
Applications for the MWFPA and Friday/Weckel Scholarships are now available.

The MWFPA Scholarship may award up to $2,000 (depending on availability of funds) in scholarship money to deserving children of parents or guardians who are employees of MWFPA member companies. They must also be a high school senior or post-secondary student accepted into, or attending, any post-secondary school in the United States.

Last year sixteen $1,000 scholarships were awarded under the program. MWFPA Scholarship applications will be accepted until March 2, 2018. The scholarships will be awarded in April, 2016.

Undergraduate students attending, or planning to attend, UW Madison, Platteville or River Falls are eligible for Friday/Weckel scholarships. Applications are due by April 27, 2018. Last year six scholarships were awarded totaling $9,000.

Information and applications can be downloaded from the MWFPA website, or by contacting Brian Elliott at: brian.elliott@mwfpa.org, or by calling 608-255-9946.
 
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Senate Labor Committee Introduces WI Worker's Comp Bill
The WI State Senate Committee on Labor and Regulatory Reform has introduced the worker's compensation "agreed-to" bill proposed by the Wisconsin Worker's Compensation Advisory Council.  The measure establishes a fee schedule for health care services provided to injured workers among other things.    
 
The bill is the biennial agreement between management and labor for reform in the worker's compensation system. Although the committee approved introduction of the bill, the vote to introduce the bill is not necessarily indicative of support for passing the bill out of committee.
 
Historically, once a WCAC approved bill was introduced, it went through a simple process of committee review and quick passage in the Legislature.  However, with more controversial items included - specifically a health service fee schedule - the bill's fate is unknown.
 
The Senate Labor Committee is expected to hold a public hearing on the bill this month.
 
WI Companies Support Worker's Comp Changes
Forty-nine business leaders from across WI representing all types of industry sectors sent a letter to legislators recently calling on them to reform WI's worker's compensation system by implementing a medical fee schedule.
 
In the letter, they outline the high costs and competitive disadvantages they face because of current law:
 
"These higher costs have become a significant competitiveness issue for our businesses. We cannot afford to pay two and sometimes three-times as much as our competitors for the exact same procedures.
 
"Forty-four other states have addressed this problem by enacting a medical fee schedule. We strongly urge you to do the same by supporting the reform package unanimously endorsed by the Worker's Compensation Advisory Council."
 
According to the Worker's Compensation Research Institute (WCRI), Wisconsin's medical costs are 46 percent higher than the national median and 61 percent higher from injuries that require more than one week off of work.

To read the full letter, click here.
 
Did You Remember Your 2018 Dues?
Reminder Did you remember to submit you membership dues for 2018?  Members are encouraged to send in their contribution as soon as possible.
 
And when paying your dues, you can also take the opportunity to  contribute to the MWFPA Scholarship fund!  All invoices contain a convenient check-off box. Scholarships may be applied for by any child of a member in good standing.  
 
If you have any questions, or would like to discuss your membership, please contact Brian Deschane at 608-255-9946, or brian.deschane@mwfpa.org.  
Food Technology Editors Predict 2018 Trends
The editors at Food Technology magazine, published by the Institute of Food Technologists, have announced their predictions on hot food trends for 2018. Here's what they're forecasting for the new year.
 
Read more
 
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Inspector General Report Raises Food Recall Concerns
FDA An updated Inspector General report has raised concerns about how well the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) protects Americans from unsafe food products. The report is prompting the agency to review its food-recall process.
 
In a review of the voluntary food recalls reported to FDA between 2012 and 2015, the IG found that the agency took as long as ten months in some cases to make sure unsafe products had come off shelves.
 
FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb said the agency had already taken a number of steps to address concerns since the IG report was issued. He also said that most companies producing food found to be unsafe are cooperative; on average, a recall happens within four calendar days of a problem being discovered.
 
The agency will also issue new guidance on recall communications in the first half of 2018, he said. "While the FDA has addressed many of the findings after the draft version was first released in 2016, we still have more work to do," Gottlieb said in a statement. "I take these obligations very seriously."
 
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Other Educational Opportunities
January 25, 2018: Wisconsin Ag Outlook Forum.  Union South, University of Wisconsin, 1308 W Dayton St, Madison, WI,10:00 AM - 4:00 PM.  Receive up to date information regarding Wisconsin's outlook for major agricultural commodities with coverage of key specialty crops that contribute to the agricultural impact of Wisconsin.  For more information and a current agenda for the day, click here.  
 
February 28, 2018: 2018 Food Energy Forum. Miron Corporate Office, 1471 McMahon Drive, Neenah, WI. Co-sponsored by the Miron Corporation, Focus on Energy, and the Midwest Food Products Association the purpose of the forum is to introduce food manufacturers to energy saving processes and to programs at Focus on Energy to help achieve energy saving goals. 
 
The Forum is free to food processors and students and for a small fee to vendors and contractors.  Space is limited so act soon.  Please complete the registration form and send it to Chris Wolslegel at (920) 886-7405 or at chris.wolslegel@miron-construction.com 
 
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Check Out MWFPA's Customized Property & Casualty Insurance For Members Only
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
The Midwest Food Products Association is pleased to announce that its members now have access to an exclusive insurance program that is written specifically for our industry.  With assistance from the risk management firm Hays Companies, this program offers a customized Property and Casualty insurance program. 

The program offers a complete insurance program for all business types, from processor to manufacturers, logistics to wholesaler and anything in between.  No market segment is excluded, and no organization is too large or too small.  

Learn more about what the MWFPA Insurance Program can do for you by visiting the program's website:
 https://mwfpa.haysprograms.com/.

For more information about the program, contact: Brad Van Swol at:Email: bvanswol@hayscompanies.com;  Phone: (414) 290-3581 
 
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Midwest Food Products Assoc. | | brian.elliott@mwfpa.org | http://www.mwfpa.org
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