IDDSI is an opportunity to combine skill sets from multiple disciplines and build something together that would benefit the residents you serve daily.   

Event Sponsors


What is IDDSI?

International Dysphagia Diet Standardization Initiative

A new global initiative to improve the lives of over 590 million people worldwide living with dysphagia. 

The Reason

Before IDDSI there has not been consistent terms and definitions for texture modified foods and thickened beverages.  Now with IDDSI,  we have a standardized and safer way to serve foods to individuals with chewing and swallowing problems.  The challenge for senior dining is to master the new IDDSI guidelines and find the best approaches to implementation. 

Why are we having this Workgroup?

This workgroup will allow us to work together to take a deep dive into IDDSI. We will prepare foods according to IDDSI standards, learn IDDSI testing methods, identify areas where innovation is needed, and create new solutions together.


What challenges does IDDSI present to our industry?

 As IDDSI is a new initiative, the most immediate challenge is implementation. We should collaboratively develop training materials that provide effective and easy approaches to learning. People in our industry and our industry partners need to understand the resources that are available to support implementation. 


Why should I attend?

Participants will have a few days to tackle IDDSI, get their hands on the food and testing methods, learn about innovate approaches to IDDSI implementation and training, develop new approaches of their own, become familiar with the marketplace for IDDSI and communicate implementation needs to industry partners. 

What to expect

Program Outline:

This hands on Workgroup is designed for senior dining professionals to work together as teams to create new relationships, while learning and developing training strategies.  

I. Introduction & Team Building Activity 

II. IDDSI Definitions and Testing Methods 

Margaret Roche will present the IDDSI testing methods for each IDDSI diet level. 

III. Exploring the IDDSI Testing Methods

We will break into groups and explore the tests for each IDDSI diet level. Each group will test one or more food category, (meat, vegetable, fruit, bread, etc.). We will have hands on experience with the tests for each diet level and then demonstrate them to the rest of the group.

IV. Deep Dive into Food Categories

Teams will work with specific food categories to explore innovative solutions for preparing foods that meet the IDDSI standards. Each team will demonstrate their findings to the rest of the group.

V. Training 

Teams will review notes related to training from summations of earlier sessions. The teams will come together with entire group to prioritize training topics, methods and materials needed.

VI. Wrap Up and Next Steps


  • Participants will gain ideas and strategies for IDDSI training that they can bring back to their communities / organizations. 
  • Entire group will identify areas of consensus related to priorities for IDDSI training by identifying the most needed training materials. 
  • Entire group will identify areas of consensus related to priorities for IDDSI equipment/tools and products that are needed for the senior living industry.

Subject to change



Margaret Roche

Margaret Roche

Margaret Roche

Margaret Roche

Roche Dietitians


 Maggie is a registered dietitian with a master’s degree in clinical nutrition.  She has advanced credentials as a certified diabetes educator, is board certified as a specialist in gerontological nutrition and is distinguished as a Fellow of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.   

Harris Ader

Harris Ader

Margaret Roche

Margaret Roche

Senior Dining Association

Founder & CEO

Harris’ areas of expertise include conceptual development, financial and business acumen, organizational effectiveness, project management, talent development and strategic vision & planning. Harris graduated from Johnson & Wales University.  

Event Information


Event Date & Time

Date & Times

Wednesday, October 16, 2019: 8:30am - 6pm

Thursday, October 17, 2019: 9am - 4pm  


Boelter Showroom  

Address: 1071 W Division St, Chicago, IL 60642 

Phone: 847-568-7760  

Hotel & Transportation

Hotel - On your own

Meals Provided

Wednesday - Lunch, snacks & cocktail reception 

Thursday - Lunch & snacks

Accommodations for attendees with special diets will be available


This is a hands on experience event, chef coats & lab coats are recommended for during the day.

Cost of Event

Senior Dining Professionals 

SDA Members: $500  per person

Non-Members: $625 per person

Industry Partners: $1,500 

The event is limited to 40 registrations due to the hands-on participation of the event. 

Registration is based on first come and will close once the limit has been reached

Interested in Sponsorship

 The Senior Dining Association is innovating the way senior dining industry professionals connect with one another and share education, cutting-edge industry trends and best practices.


Only 7 Sponsorships Available