NEW DATE: Thursday, October 6 from 12:00 - 12:45 p.m. PT
Hear from leading Bay Area category buyers on their category review processes. We'll discuss the trends they're seeing, preferred marketing support tactics, and how to set yourself up for success with each retailer.
Naturally Bay Area board member Jen Berliner, General Manager of Moonshot Snacks, will lead a conversation with our featured panelists.
Jen Berliner is the General Manager of Moonshot, a new line of climate-friendly crackers made with regeneratively grown ingredients. She’s passionate about creating behavior change that makes people and the planet healthier.
Prior to Moonshot, Berliner was the CEO of Medlie, a leading fresh vegetable snacking platform incubated by Sonoma Brands. Berliner joined Medlie (formerly ZÜPA NOMA) in late 2016 from PepsiCo, bringing strong experience in growth strategy, insights-driven innovation, and channel and customer specific marketing programs. During her time at PepsiCo, she grew Mug Root Beer, Manzanita Sol, and SoBe; commercialized multiple “better for you” Foodservice innovations, and led Shopper Marketing at top retailers for three of PepsiCo’s $1.5B+ food & beverage portfolios.
Before joining PepsiCo, Berliner developed integrated marketing campaigns at GMMB, a communications strategy firm in Washington, D.C. She has also consulted for Google Food, where she led qualitative research into employee eating habits and provided recommendations implemented at the corporate level to improve food choices. Berliner earned a B.A. in Political Science and French from Vanderbilt University and an MBA from the Yale School of Management.
Thuy Nguyen is a Category Manager at Thrive Market, the health-first membership for conscious living, with a mission of making healthy living easy, affordable and accessible to all. At Thrive Market, Thuy is building out the assortment in Dairy, Deli and Refrigerated Grocery in preparation for their Fresh launch. Prior to Thrive Market, she was the Forager at Good Eggs and focused her time on finding unique and differentiated grocery products to bring onto the platform. Thuy graduated summa cum laude from New York University and has over 12 years of experience working within all facets of the food industry and supply chain from farmer's market manager, to wholesale coordinator, to small business owner. Throughout her years working within food companies like Hot Bread Kitchen, FarmBox, and Good Eggs, she found the most joy in discovering small emerging brands and helping them grow. When she isn't focused on trying the latest innovative ready-to-drink beverage, she spends time baking and thinking about ways to increase representation and diversity in the food world.
Graduated culinary school in 1995, graduated with a B.B.A. in 2017 while working as territory sales representative for Kehe. Pursued my interest in specialty foods, developing my skillset to examine the trends and patterns that affect the ways consumers are changing their grocery and nutritional needs. As the grocery director at Gus's Community Market, I am presented many categories of natural food, finding local products that make the San Francisco Bay Area a favored hub among the food entrepreneurs.
Miriam started in the business bagging groceries during high school at her local Lucky Store in San Francisco's Excelsior district. Through 6 ownership changes, she is still selling groceries 40+years later. She has part of the buying and merchandising teams for 25 years, touching most of center store, dairy and frozen, including overseeing the entire grocery department in Southern California for 5 years. Last year, she was able to return home to the Bay Area, and is currently the national category director for Breakfast (cereal, grain bars, fruit snacks) and Nutrition (nutrition bars, protein powder and shakes, weight management, adult nutrition). In this role, she oversees assortment, schematics and strategy for these categories in 2,100+ stores in 37 states. Miriam is a proud graduate of San Francisco State (BS) and University of California at Berkeley (MBA).
Patrick Wyman has 29 years of experience in the natural foods industry, and 19 with Whole Foods Market. He started with the company in a store support role for the grocery department, moved through grocery leadership, and now oversees the Northern California region’s local purchasing program and local vendor partnerships. In this role Patrick helps guide vendors through the logistics of bringing a product to market including topics like packaging, distribution, financing, and compliance with company and governmental standards. He’s passionate about the environment; professionally he participates in Whole Foods Market’s Green Mission leadership team, and spends plenty of time off work hiking and skiing.