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John F. T. Scott

Retail Industry speaker, Consultant and former CEO

John F.T. Scott is a renowned leader and authority on the food industry: notably the intersection between economics and consumer trends, their implications, and opportunities for producers, manufacturers, and retailers. Leveraging his unique depth of experience spanning economic policy and decades of hands-on leadership experience in the industry, John helps companies in all facets of industry mapping strategies that minimize risk and maximize upside.  


Each presentation is tailored to the specific audience based on information he secures from the sponsoring organization together with research he undertakes on the industry sector begin addressed.

The Reality of Canada’s Grocery Industry – What’s in it for Producers and Processors
This is a fast paced presentation designed to inform the audience of the changing dynamics of the consumer and the strategies retailers are using to meet their needs. It probes the points of differentiation of each major player and how a producer or processor might best appeal to them to maximize both sales and returns. It also offers an excellent insight into the short term future of the industry and mixes fundamental economics with practical reality. What the Audience Will Learn The audience will leave with an excellent understanding of the reality of selling to various players in the market. A thinking participant will see nothing but opportunity. Who Would Benefit Processors and producers seeking to increase sales in the Canadian retail food industry This presentation or a previous iteration has been positively received by the Kraft Canada Executive Committee and National Sales Conference, McCain Foods International, Nestle Canada Retail Sales, B.C. Food Processors Association (Food Pro West), MNP, Tiffen Conference and B.C. Horticulture Short Course in addition to a number of others.

Innovation in the Retail Industry – the Key to The Future
A presentation designed to stimulate thought among true entrepreneurs as it takes a look at some of the true innovators in the retail sector. It explores the motivation that inspires highly respected companies to adjust their focus, take measured risks and drive in new and unique directions. Examining large and small companies ranging from producers through processors to retailers this session explores best practices resulting in success in the industry. What the Audience Will Learn Participants will be taken on an insightful journey of entrepreneurship at its best. The session is designed to motivate those inclined to consider qualified market place risk by unveiling possibilities. Who Would Benefit While many people enjoy this session the true value accrues to the producer, processor or retailer seeking to emulate the success of exceptional innovators. This presentation or a previous iteration has been very positively received by audiences which include the Australian Supermarket Convention, the Triple 4 Convention, Quality Foods, Acosta Canada, Pepsico Foods and the TGP 50th Anniversary Convention in addition to others.

The Dynamics of Canada’s Retail Food Industry – the Consumer Calls the Shots  
This is a high level overview of consumer trends, behaviour and values and how they dictate the strategies in the retail food sector. It combines easy to understand economics with consumer patterns to lead the audience through the rationale for the maze of diverse approaches to points of differentiation used by retailers. The discussion draws from the realities of both Canada and International retailers What the Audience will Learn This is an entertaining session designed to increase knowledge and provoke thought. The audience will leave with a different appreciation for of the retail food sector and often better understand their own purchasing behaviour! Who Should Attend This session is designed for a general audience with an interest in the sector. It is a great piece for a large convention. This presentation or a previous iteration has been very positively received by audiences which include the Growing the North Conference, Canadian Institute of Food Science and Technology, the George Morris Centre, the University of Guelph, and Grocery Innovations Canada in addition to others.

The Retail Food Industry in Canada – an Understanding of a Dynamic Industry
This presentation describes and explains the retail food industry in Canada including specific companies, strategies and key personnel. It should be viewed as a primer on the sector What the Audience Will Learn The audience will leave with a solid understanding of the players and operation of the retail food industry Who Should Attend This session would be of interest to anyone who either needs or wants an understanding of the dynamics of this key industry sector. It seems to appeal to government (both civil servant and elected official), universities and companies seeking to enter the sector. This presentation has been positively received by Federal – Provincial Agriculture Minister’s Conferences, the Vineland Research and Innovation Centre, Agriculture Committee of the House of Commons, various Provincial Ministers and several Universities in addition to others.

Presentations Tailored to Specific Audiences  
Often a company or group will request a presentation designed for a specific industry, commodity or type of product. This is always enjoyable as fresh and intriguing research always brings a new dimension into the discussion. What the Audience Will Learn In these situations the audience receives a fresh and unbiased perspective on their company, sector or commodity. The reactions are always varied and often very interesting. Who Should Attend The audience is normally from the sector being discussed and tends to include producers and processors but rarely retailers. This type or presentation has been positively received by Premium Brands, Choices Markets, the International Livestock Congress, Ontario Egg Producers, Ontario Dairy Council, B.C. Tender Fruit Growers in addition to several others.

  • John provided an in depth and insightful overview of the Canadian Retail Industry to the McCain International Sales Conference in Toronto in 2011. What makes John’s presentation unique is his deep knowledge of all parts of the country and his individual relationships with many of the key retail and manufacturer leaders across the food and beverage industry.

    - President, McCain’s Canada Ltd. 2011
  • John is a consummate story teller, and has the rare gift of sharing valuable information and his insight in a thoroughly engaging way. He takes the audience along with him on a journey of discovery. I secured John as the keynote speaker at a national conference and that decision made me look good! The reviews in one word: outstanding!

    - Canadian Institute of Food Science and Technology National Convention, 2012
  • John is most powerful when he combines his economic acumen, business insight and public speaking skills to disseminate high level issues and opportunities to all manner of audiences.

    - Vice President Sales, Kraft Canada 2013

Summary Profile

A highly sought after consultant and key note speaker. John has earned the respect and reputation across industry, government, and the supply chains as the “go to” person for a comprehensive understanding of strategies, effectiveness and positioning in the retail food industry. John delivers excellence in strategic retail analysis. He analyzes and interprets complex economic and business concepts in the food supply chain, taking into account both macro trends and micro-market influences that affect how and where consumers shop, what they buy and why. Following his leadership role as head of Canada’s largest grocery industry association for more than two decades, coupled with a proven track record in economics and related policy, John Scott is uniquely qualified to help companies in all facets of the food industry map strategies that minimize risk and maximize upside. Client partners benefit from a clear understanding of where retail is heading, opportunities for differentiation, and value-added strategies together with recommendations they can action with clarity and confidence. John is equally regarded for his passion, wit, and ability to connect with audiences stimulating intention, thought, and action. Drawing from his vast experience, John delivers tailored keynotes that address the unique needs, realities and motivators of his audience.