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Former Defense Secretary Robert Gates

The National Grocers Association has announced the keynote speaker at its next annual convention will be (drum roll, please): former defense secretary Robert Gates. He will “share his considerable knowledge, experience and insights of current world events gained through his long, distinguished career,” NGA chief Peter Larkin says. The talk will take place Feb. 12 at the Mirage Hotel in Las Vegas.

Strange to see a portrait of Gates without the American flag in the background. He may want to talk to the nation’s food sellers about what troops are eating in the field. On Friday, for example, the Pentagon announced a $14 million contract for “polymeric traypack baker ration items.” Yummy!