Event Details

Retail Roundtable: Whole Foods, FreshDirect, The Fresh Market

Tuesday, February 28th, 3PM EST

Naturally New York's 2nd Retail Roundtable will feature an amazing panel of 3 buyers from top national grocers and will be moderated by Alison Cayne, Founder of Haven's Kitchen. They will share insights and best practices on how to successfully partner with grocers and retailers to create a lasting relationship and long shelf life for your brand and products.


  • Ali Cayne (Founder, CEO of Haven's Kitchen)

    Ali Cayne

    Founder, CEO of Haven's Kitchen


    Alison Cayne is the founder and CEO of Haven's Kitchen, a creative cooking company with a mission to change the way people feel about cooking.

    Alison has been helping people cook, not just follow recipes, since 2012, when she opened the Haven’s Kitchen Cooking School in NYC. In 2018, Haven’s Kitchen launched its first product — a line of fresh, globally-inspired sauces in a pouch, now available online, as well as in over 1500 stores across the U.S.

    Alison is the author of Haven’s Kitchen Cooking School (Artisan 2017) and has contributed to publications such as The New York Post, Forbes, Architectural Digest, and Cherry Bombe.

    She is an adjunct professor of Food Studies at NYU, a guest lecturer at ICE, Columbia Business school, and was a featured speaker at TEDxManhattan.

    Alison is on the board of Naturally NY and works to support other early-stage food entrepreneurs as an advisor and as host of In the Sauce, a podcast about building consumer brands.

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  • John Lawson (Senior Local Forager at Whole Foods Market)

    John Lawson

    Senior Local Forager at Whole Foods Market


    Experienced retailer with a demonstrated history of working with suppliers and distributors. Strong purchasing professional skilled in Food & Beverage, Customer Service, Sales, and Retail.

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  • Loan Heilner (Sr. Associate Category Manager at Freshdirect)

    Loan Heilner

    Sr. Associate Category Manager at Freshdirect


    Loan has been with FreshDirect for 5 years. During her tenure, Loan has been a strong contributor to the Center Store Merchandising team, having previously managed Frozen, Baby Boutique, and Pet Shop categories. In her current role, she is managing assortment selection, pricing and promotional strategies, and Shopper Marketing programming for the Dairy & Perishables categories.

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  • Wade Yenny (VP of Center Store at The Fresh Market)

    Wade Yenny

    VP of Center Store at The Fresh Market


    Born and raised in Ohio, Wade spent twenty years with Buehler’s Fresh Foods headquartered in Wooster Ohio, in varying positions at both store and the corporate level. Wade left Buehler’s in 2019 as the Sr. Director of Center Store. Wade then joined Rouses Markets headquartered in Schriever Louisiana as a Grocery Category Manager before being promoted to the Director of Non Foods, HBA, GM & Confections. From there, Wade worked with Jimbo’s headquartered in San Diego California as a Grocery Buyer before being promoted to the Director of Grocery. Next (and currently) Wade works at The Fresh Market headquartered in Greensboro, North Carolina as the Vice President of Center Store & Space Planning. Wade’s experience in conventional, specialty, and the natural/organic channels gives him a well rounded perspective of the retail grocery business. Wade is known for his eagerness to work with emerging brands, his open-minded approach to collaboration, and his ability to build and develop relationships. Wade is also the co-host (along with Alex Bayer) of the “Friday Vibes” weekly LinkedIn podcast which caters to the CPG/emerging brands community.

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