46th MSC Annual Meeting


46th Annual Meeting
Marriott Renaissance Hotel
Nashville, Tennessee
September 19-21, 2017

Everyone Is Welcomed To Participate!

Mark your calendars to join the Mulch & Soil Council in “The Music City” – Nashville, TN, on September 19-21, 2017.

Downtown Nashville is the hub of the entertainment that defines Music City. Within mere city blocks, visitors can experience world-class art, catch a great Broadway play, see world-class concerts and events, and take part in Nashville's real life adventure game, The Escape Game.

Also within walking distance is the legendary Ryman Auditorium regarded as the “Mother Church of Country Music.” The Ryman is a National Historic Landmark renown for its exceptional acoustics that has hosted musicians from Chris Isaak and James Brown to Patsy Cline and John Legend, as well as current and rising stars of all musical genres.

Just a couple blocks from the music on Broadway is one of Nashville's most vibrant art communities located on 5th Avenue of the Arts. Get your caffeine fix at Dunn Bros. Coffee or Frothy Monkey Nashville Downtown.

If you’re looking for authentic Southern comfort food while taking it all in, check out Puckett’s Grocery & Restaurant or Jack’s Bar-B-Que. Don't miss Morton’s The Steakhouse that serves only the finest quality foods.

Check out Nashville’s elegant hot spot, Merchants, a former hotel. The Capitol Grille reinvents Southern gourmet cuisine using the freshest regional ingredients. Finally, get ready for Jeff Ruby's Steakhouse, which plans to open this winter.

Wash it all down while enjoying some of the world’s greatest live music – offered free 24/7/365 – at one of the city’s many honky-tonks that line famous Broadway.

Full Meeting Registration

All advance registrations must be accompanied by the appropriate registration fees to be eligible for the registration discount. Registration fees cover attendance for all meetings, receptions, Thursday lunch and coffee breaks. Entertainment and tour fees are additional. Lodging is not included in the registration fees.

Non-Member Participation

Participants from non-member companies are welcome to attend the meeting and all functions. Non-member participants may attend one association meeting as a first-time registrant and are entitled to the member registration rate. Participation at a second meeting as a non-member is permitted at non-member registration rates. Attendance at additional meetings is by special invitation.

Cancellations & Refunds

Requests for cancellation of meeting registration or guest tickets must be received in writing at the MSC office. Cancellations received by August 15, 2017, will be subject to a cancellation fee of 25%, which will be deducted from the refund. No refund will be made for cancellation requests received after August 15, 2017.

Limits of Liability

The planners and sponsors of the MSC Annual Meeting and its associated events claim no liability for the acts of any supplier to this meeting, nor for the safety of any attendee while in transit to or from this event. Attendees who purchase non-refundable airline tickets do so at their own risk. In the event of meeting cancellation, the total amount of liability of the planners and sponsors will be limited to a refund of the registration fee. Submission of the registration form acknowledges acceptance of these provisions.

Join the Mulch & Soil Council & Receive an Immediate Discount

Non-members of MSC may join the Council at any time prior to the Annual Meeting and receive an immediate discount on the registration fee. For information on becoming a member, contact the MSC office at (806) 832-1810




2017 Preliminary Program


(Subject to Change)

Tuesday, September 19

1:30p-5:00p MSC Committee Meetings – MSC Members in good standing are invited to observe Council committee meetings. See first-hand how industry issues are approached and solutions made for the benefit of the entire industry.

Wednesday, September 20

1:30p-2:30p The Crow Political Report – MSC Legislative Rep David Crow will review the effectiveness of the present Administration's policies in promoting jobs, the economy, national security and other key legislative and regulatory reforms promised since the last MSC annual meeting.
2:30p-3:00p Break
3:00p-4:00p Improving Operational Excellence – Our panelists of industry experts will give presentations on different activities and how they can contribute to operational excellence for your company:
Knowing Your Cost of Production — Ken Allen, Oldcastle Lawn & Garden;
Product Demand Planning — Chris Littlefield, Kellogg Garden Products;
Expectations of a Contract Packer — Brent Bolton, Harvest Consumer Products.
4:00p-4:15p Break
4:15p-5:30p Annual Business Meeting – Hear a special report on our recent industry fire survey as well as reports from the President, Treasurer, committees and Executive Director. We will also conduct elections for members of the MSC Board of Directors
6:00p-7:30p Opening Reception – Join our Affiliate and Associate Members for cocktails and displays on the latest technologies and equipment.

Thursday, September 21

8:30a-9:15a Home Depot QA Program – Hear the background and process behind the effort by a major industry retailer to establish QA targets for mulch and soil products nationally. Speaker: Craig Stewart, The Home Depot
9:15a-9:30a Break
9:30a-10:15a Understanding the Total Cost of Ownership To determine if it is better to lease or purchase equipment, it is necessary to understand the total cost of ownership. Speaker: John Janes, Caterpillar Inc.
10:15a-10:30a Break
10:30a-11:15a How Insurance Options Can Impact Your Business – This session will focus on understanding Workers Compensation and other insurance related risks associated with your business and ways to minimze their impact. Presenter: Todd Johnson, USI
11:30p-1:45p Keynote Luncheon: CHANGE IS COMING! – In 2013, Dr. Alan Beaulieu told MSC members, "If someone asks you to be the president of your company in 2018, he probably isn't your friend." Do the predictions for 2018 remain unchanged as uncertainty and volatility are the prevailing challenges that business leaders confront today. The critical questions facing the business community are “What will be the overall health and vibrancy of the US and global economies going forward?”, and “How can I be profitable and make critical strategic decisions in the face of such economic volatility?” Sifting through the often-conflicting maze of economic information, ITR Economics senior analyst Alan Beaulieu will provide a timely snapshot of the economy today, where it is headed over the next three years and what it means to your business. Hear this amazing session by one of the country's leading economic forecasters. Presenter: Dr. Alan Beaulieu, President, ITR Economics SPONSORED BY: BASF
1:45p-2:00p Break
2:00p-2:45p Bulk & In-Line Scanning for Volume – Building on last year's new technology for inventory scanning, we will review new technologies for scanning inbound and outbound truckloads as well as over conveyor scanners. Presenter: Matt Walz & Josh Bieber, Walz Scales.
2:45p-3:00p Break
3:00p-3:45p Plant Safety Plant safety must be more than a program to be successful — it has to be an employee culture. Hear how one mulch plant operated over 20 years without a single reportable plant accident or injury. Speaker: Don Dugger, The Scotts Company
4:00p-5:30p Presidents Reception – Join us for our closing event as the President’s Reception gives participants the opportunity to recap the bounty of information presented at the meeting and say goodbye to old and new friends before returning home.







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Hotel Information

Marriott Renaissance Hotel
Nashville, Tennessee
September 19-21, 2017

Explore music city from our downtown Nashville hotel.


Discover the country music capital of the world while staying at the Renaissance Nashville Hotel. Situated in the heart of the business district, this downtown Nashville hotel allows for maximum exploration. Walking distance to Music City Center and attractions like Bridgestone Arena, Nissan Stadium (formerly LP Field), B.B. King's Blues Club, Country Music Hall of Fame, Ryman Auditorium and the Historic Second Avenue District. Guests can enjoy our 24-hour fitness center, indoor pool and a variety of delicious dining options inside our Nashville hotel. Try The Bridge if you're craving an American classic, or dine at Commerce Street Grille for southern favorites. As one of the premier hotels in downtown Nashville, we offer over 70,000 square feet of flexible meeting space and access to exceptional onsite catering. Setting the standard for sophisticated hospitality, our downtown Nashville hotel is redefining what it means to travel comfortably.

A special block of rooms has been set-aside for MSC meeting participants. The preferred guest rate for MSC members is: $222 (+tax)/night. The deadline for discounted room rates 
and space availability is when the block is filled or August 20, 2017 - WHICHEVER COMES FIRST.

More information about the Nashville Marriott Renaissance Hotel is available at: HOTEL INFO

To make a hotel reservation for the MSC Annual Meeting please register online at: >>>BOOK RESERVATIONS<<<.

Join Us In NASHVILLE!