Food Retailers Summit is Sept. 25-27: Register now!

Photo courtesy of Crystal Mountain Resort

Grocers, suppliers and friends – join us at Crystal Mountain Resort for the Food Retailers Summit, where we’ll take networking to the next level! This year’s agenda is full of hot topics and networking events that we can’t wait to share with you.

The summit, sponsored by the Michigan Grocers Division of Michigan Retailers, is Wednesday Sept. 25 – Friday, Sept. 27. All meals are included in the registration fee of just $199. Hotel rates are $15 lower per night and spouses are included for free!

This year’s gathering will have favorite activities including bocce and cornhole. Also returning is the Euchre tournament, which was a big hit when it debuted last year. The summit agenda has timely, relevant presentations including the following:

  • MRA VP of Government Affairs Amy Drumm will give a can’t-miss legislative and regulatory update.
  • Human resources expert Jodi Schafer will lead a frank conversation about managing human resources. She’ll discuss the most common HR situations for retailers that can quickly spiral out of control if not handled correctly as well as the legal and practical aspects of marijuana in the workplace and recent changes in employment law. Plan to join us for a lively and interactive presentation.
  • Discussing the evolving trends in digital innovations and if they can work for independent store operators will be Thom Blischok, chairman and CEO of The Dialogic Group. With over 30 years of in-depth experience with major retail chains and CPG manufacturers, he is in high demand as a speaker and consultant.
  • Michigan’s recently appointed Industrial Hemp Director, Gina Alessandri, will give an update and answer questions about how the state plans to regulate sales of industrial hemp products like CBD.
  • We’ll also have government relations and regulatory law attorney Douglas Mains, who is at the forefront of Michigan’s evolving medical marijuana law and helped draft the Michigan proposal. He will address the frequent legal questions around selling CBD and hemp products.
  • On Thursday night, Cliff Erickson — singer and 12-string acoustic guitar performer — will entertain you with a mix of original music and cover songs including hits by Johnny Cash, The Beatles and Elvis Presley.

Here are the deadlines:

  • Room reservation should be made by Aug. 25, when Crystal Mountain will release our room block. Book online or call 855.520.2974 and ask for the Michigan Grocers block, using Group Code 4685CH.
  • To be a sponsor, submit the sponsorship form by Sept. 9 (see form below).
  • To register to attend, submit the registration form by Sept. 16 (see form below).

Several sponsorship opportunities are available as well as an opportunity to include sample products, promotional items and information in our Welcome Bag.

For more information, contact Nora Jones at or call her at 800.366.3699 ext.344.

Conference information and forms:

Frequently Asked Questions

Looking for a way to introduce new products or reintroduce existing products, want to share information about products or services? This is our take on a condensed, higher-value experience than the trade show. Instead of paying higher fees and lugging trade show materials to the Summit, submit your non-perishable product, promotional item and/or information to be included in our Welcome Bag that Summit guests will pick up at our registration desk on Wednesday.
To include your items in the Welcome Bag, contact Nora Jones at or call her at 800.366.3699 ext.344. MRA will send a product/promotional materials description form, with quantity needed and shipping/delivery instructions approximately two weeks prior to the summit.
Sign-up sheets will be at the Summit Registration Desk for the euchre tournament (held Wednesday evening after dinner), and bocce and cornhole tournaments (held Thursday afternoon).
Pre-registration is required for golf on Friday, Sept. 27 at the resort’s Mountain Ridge course. It will be a four-ball scramble with scheduled tee times available starting at 8:48 a.m. Lunch, beverages and prizes are included in the $125 registration fee. No formal after-golf program is planned, but winners’ prizes will be awarded at an informal 19th Hole.
Yes. Book online or call 855.520.2974 and ask for the Michigan Grocers block, using Group Code 4685CH.
We recommend resort-casual attire for all Summit functions. All meeting and meal functions are in the Crystal Center, located a short walk from your lodgings.

Pick up your name badge and Welcome Bag at the Summit Registration/Info Desk in the Crystal Center (main level) between 4 and 6:30 p.m.
Hotel accommodations range from $108 to $242 per unit, per night. Room rates are subject to 6% state tax, 2% local assessment and 9% service fee. Crystal Mountain’s online registration system provides details on all accommodations available to Summit guests.
Check-in begins after 5 p.m. or as accommodations become available. Check-out is at 11 a.m. Crystal Mountain is happy to offer an early check-in as soon as your accommodations are clean and ready. To receive an early check-in please pre-register at Crystal Mountain’s Front Desk, located at the Inn at the Mountain, upon arrival. Visit – Trip Planning – for additional accommodation information, resort maps and more.