Retail Panel to Share Expertise with New Product Entrepreneurs



Washington, D.C. (April 25, 2018) – The 2018 Sweets & Snacks Expo is pleased to announce the presenting companies and retailer panel for this year’s Power Pitch III: Lessons for Buyers and Sellers. Now in its third year, the unique educational session provides an opportunity for product developers to learn what category leaders need to know when presenting their new items to retail decision makers.

Moderated by industry veteran Michael Sansolo from, the companies chosen to present their innovative products are Lake Champlain Chocolates, Snack It Forward and Snowflakes Candy Mints. All three are first-time Expo exhibitors.

“Power Pitch has quickly become a signature session in our Sweets & Snacks Expo program,” commented Barry Rosenbaum, Expo chairman and president of Nassau Candy Distributors, Inc. “The presenting companies will have access to valuable feedback from various category leaders they may not normally receive. The participants, panel and audience all gain from this rich learning lab experience.”

Attendees will hear from an expert retail panel on what they look for when being presented with new products. This year’s panelists are:

  • Donna Burghardt – Category Manager, Bed, Bath and Beyond
  • Chris Ebanks – Category Leader, Party City
  • Hilary Freedman – Owner, Just A Thought and C-Store Category Leader
  • Jeff Rubin – President and Founder, IT’SUGAR
  • Kayla Verney – Category Manager, BJ’s Wholesale Club

The Power Pitch session will be held on the first day of the Expo, Tuesday, May 22 at 2 p.m. CT, in Skyline Hall’s Discovery Theater. Power Pitch is one of more than 20 educational offerings at the 2018 Sweets & Snacks Expo. To see the entire Sweets & Snacks Expo educational calendar, visit

# # #

About the National Confectioners Association (NCA)
The National Confectioners Association is the trade organization that advances, protects and promotes chocolate, candy, gum and mints, and the companies that make these special treats. As the leading association for the $35 billion U.S. confectionery industry, NCA educates the public to help ensure that it understands and appreciates the unique role that chocolate and candy can play in a happy, balanced lifestyle. Confections are produced in all 50 states, creating jobs for approximately 55,000 workers in more than 1,000 manufacturing facilities across the country. More than 400,000 jobs in agriculture, retail, transportation and other industries rely in part on the sale of confections for their livelihood. For every one job that is created by confectionery companies, another seven are supported in related industries. Learn more about the “Power of Sweet” at, or follow NCA on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

About the Sweets & Snacks Expo
Sponsored by the National Confectioners Association, the Sweets & Snacks Expo is the confectionery and snack industry’s most successful, world-class event. It is unrivaled in new product launches, business building solutions and innovations in merchandising. Qualified candy and snack professionals attend with global presence from 90 countries. More than 800 companies displaying more than 4 acres of candy and snack products participate in the Expo. The event is held each May at Chicago’s McCormick Place.


Unwrapped education series