Brewing up a Packaging Potion

Time: Thursday Oct 3rd from 10:15AM to 11:45AM

Location: Mt. Adams

Speaker(s): Lisa Spicka - Associate Director, Sustainable Food Trade Association (SFTA); Melissa Elkins - Sustainability Coordinator,community Food Co-op, Bellingham; James Dills - Wellness Consultant, Ashland Food Co-op

Want to magically transform the power of the natural products industry into broad social and environmental impacts? This new Provender workshop-style—an interactive, feedback-focused workshop that helps shape industry-level efforts—helps you do just that.

Led by SFTA, “Brewing Up a Packaging Potion” seeks to obtain feedback on and help align industry peers around SFTA’s 2020 Retailer Packaging Challenge. The Challenge has grown out of SFTA’s 2019 efforts that have convened industry players around coordinating sustainable packaging efforts. Slated for launch in 2020, the Retailer Packaging Challenge seeks to inspire retailers and their suppliers to implement and measure the impacts of radical plastic-reducing packaging efforts. The session will lay out the structure and goals of the Challenge as designed to date, and use group facilitation techniques to inspire thinking and feedback that will make the challenge more realistic, resourced, and impactful.

Attend “Brewing Up a Packaging Potion,” and help formulate the elixir that ignites a packaging movement!



Lisa Spicka – As Associate Director of SFTA and primary Education Director for its project the Climate Collaborative, Lisa Spicka uses her diverse background to develop educational and analytic tools that help companies uncover sustainability priorities, and learn about practical solutions to grow their triple-bottom-line practices.Lisa also uses these skills as CEO of Maracuja Solutions, where she helps clients integrate supply chain engagement initiatives and incorporate sustainability strategy and business planning to scale their business services and products with integrity.


Melissa ElkinsMelissa has worked for the Community Food Co-op, located in Bellingham, WA, since 1996. Since 2012, she has been the Co-op’s Sustainability Coordinator when she started developing a framework for tracking and creating sustainability initiatives within the organization. Since that time, the Co-op has published detailed, public annual sustainability reports, achieved LEED certification for their Cordata neighborhood store, has achieved national recognition for their sustainability work, and has been recognized by the EPA as a national Green Power retail leader for the last three years. She also mentors businesses, organizations, and university students on sustainability reporting/tracking and has presented at educational workshops and other events across the country.

James Dills – James Dills is a Wellness Consultant at the Ashland Food Co-op and has previously served as a Steering Committee member at Provender Alliance. He is very passionate about having a positive impact on the direction of our natural foods and products industry.