Definitely the world has been changing
The packaging industry continues to be under
the spotlight and I foresee this continuing through Covid-19. It is up to us to
rise to the challenge. After 13 months of Covid-19, we have raised the bar in
packaging to meet the demands that pandemic has placed at us. I passionately
believe that the global packaging industry will continue to do so. More so than
ever before, WPO member countries have worked together to ensure a global
approach has been taken to effectively meet the needs of this demand.
Packaging for the food market continues to
witness significant growth in the home delivery sector as families go into
lockdown or prefer to self-isolate. This new life choice has seen a rise in the
production of insulated packaging to keep frozen goods safe for home
deliveries. As restaurants have re-opened with limited numbers allowed, if at
all, the need for take away containers has skyrocketed. Some countries
have reflected an increase in demand of more than 200% for some lines of meat, seafood,
and poultry. This is because of more people staying home and cooking for
themselves rather than going out to eat. This change has led to a greater
demand for appropriate meat trays that have been produced in safe, COVID-free
There has been an overwhelming fear of
consumers of being exposed to and catching COVID-19, which is currently a
driving force behind safe packaging. The response to this has been that
companies and brands have had to adapt to meet consumer’s new demands. Not
only are consumers washing their hands more frequently and using more sanitiser
than they have ever used before; they are also increasing their use of
household disinfectants and cleaners. Purchasing behaviour for many consumers
has changed in response to the COVID-19 outbreak and consumers are now
stock-piling non-perishable items such as rice, pasta, canned fish, canned
Before COVID-19, companies were progressing
quickly toward their sustainability goals. However, the coronavirus pandemic
has negatively affected a multitude of industries around the world, especially
the packaging industry. Packaging companies were coming up with innovative
technologies that were friendly to the environment, reusable, and
biodegradable. But, concerns about the hygiene and safety of reusable packaging
temporarily halted the packaging industry’s progress towards a sustainable and
circular supply chain.
Following the pandemic, packaging companies
will need to rebalance sustainability goals that incorporate heightened
hygiene, normalise e-commerce, and take product cost into consideration. The
impact of the pandemic will have a positive effect on performance because these
new trends will highlight customers’ needs across the industry.(https://www.plugandplaytechcenter.com/resources/covid-19-impact-packaging-industry/)
The challenge for us in the packaging
industry, therefore, remains two-fold: our first focus should always be on
aiming to produce safe, reliable, reusable or recyclable, sustainable
packaging. Our second, but equally important focus, must be on insisting local
governments cooperate with us as material manufacturers, or converters to
create a robust, successful recycling infrastructure that can process all the
fantastically exciting new innovations in sustainable packaging.
There remains confusion among consumers
regarding the disposal of packaging, especially plastics; and those who are
keen to clean up our planet often have nowhere to go to manage their waste
packaging. As consumers expect more protective packaging than ever before, we
need to become serious about finding solutions to this even greater pandemic
impact on packaging.
The battle for reducing plastic waste has
been a hot initiative. Countries around the world started banning single-use
plastics, including Colombia, parts of the United States, China, Zimbabwe,
Albania, Cameroon, Romania, and many other countries. Companies were announcing
targets that they planned to meet by a certain year in the effort to become as
sustainable as possible.
Unfortunately, when COVID-19 began,
consumers became concerned that a person could get the virus by touching a
surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their mouth, nose,
or another person. The virus seems to be able to survive on cardboard for about
24 hours, and on plastic for up to three days. Even though the exact danger was
unknown, sustainability programs decreased or paused in the early months of the
pandemic. Several countries and US states have paused and lifted bans on
single-use plastics and have even banned reusable bags temporarily.
Supermarkets saw an increase in single-use
plastics for wrapping products. This was the immediate safety response that
places initiated for the health and safety of people across the globe. The
amount of plastic waste generated in Thailand has surged by 15% with COVID-19,
despite the country’s ban on plastic bags that was introduced in January 2020.
The United Kingdom was on its way to legislate
banning the sale of plastic drinking straws, plastic-stemmed cotton buds, and
plastic stirrers. UK Environment Minister confirmed that this will be delayed,
since discarding single-use plastic products that may carry virus droplets is
safer. Originally, the regulations were laid in March and set to come into
force in April. In the USA, some states been calling for delays on plastic
bans, fearing that reusable bags carry the virus. This pushback increased
demand for products like bottled water and disposable sanitisers. (https://www.plugandplaytechcenter.com/resources/covid-19-impact-packaging-industry/)
Education in packaging knowledge is key to
our future success. Attending webinars or offering and training programs to
ensure they keep up with the latest trends and expectations, is an excellent
start. The WPO can help you with such training courses.
I believe, post this pandemic, that public
perception of packaging, particularly plastic and sustainability issues, will
have altered as they realise the value of packaging. I really hope the ongoing
drive to remove plastic altogether and of seeing plastic as the ogre – rather
than the solution - will have changed to a push for improved waste management
infrastructure around the world. COVID-19 has perhaps done the poor plastic
victim a BIG favour. And, hopefully, a new focus and knowledge will lead to new
innovations for better collection, for recycling and reuse of plastic
*Pierre Pienaar is President of WPO
WPO – World Packaging Organization
Around the World
Packaging conference in Ukraine
At the end of 2020, the Club Packagers of Ukraine (www.facebook.com/ClubPackagersOfUkraine/), a WPO member, held the 14th Conference ‘Packaging Industry’, in Kiev. The conference was attended by about 70 specialists from 45 Ukrainian and foreign packaging companies. The topic of the conference was ‘Sustainability and Industry-4.0’ and 10 reports were presented.
Well-known experts in Ukraine and abroad talked
about environmentally friendly packaging; industry 4.0 as a method of ensuring
the stable development of the packaging industry; circular technologies; and digitalization
and automation in packaging processes.
Participants were actively discussing the development
of packaging in Ukraine, the use of modern technologies, packaging materials
and equipment. Ukrainian and foreign companies, like Dow Europe GmbH and Coca-Cola,
supported the conference. Each participant of the conference received a book of
reports and other information materials, and an article about the conference
was published in the Ukrainian magazine "Upakovka".
IoPP certification program continues solid
The Institute of Packaging Professionals (IoPP
– www.iopp.org), WPO member in USA, reports that certifications
in its Certified Packaging Professional program have grown 4.4% over the past
year to 1,270 globally. IoPP now has CPPs in 28 countries as its certification
program continues to show significant international growth.
IoPP, working with WPO, has formed partnerships with the Australian Institute
of Packaging, the Institute of Packaging South Africa and others to spread
awareness about the CPP program internationally.
Earning the CPP designation is an excellent investment in an individual’s
professional development. This credential signifies packaging professionals who
have gone the extra mile with continuing education that validates them
internationally as proficient in a broad range of skills in packaging. The CPP
designation is recognized internationally by the WPO.
Beyond partnership efforts, IoPP also is growing the CPP program globally
through licensing agreements and professional development programs with
individual companies. During 2020, approximately 40 packaging professionals at
PepsiCo, many of them outside of the USA, earned their CPP designation.
To find out more about this certification program, contact the WPO at [email protected].
PACMACHINE Awards 2020 jury report
For recognizing the achievements of packaging
machinery sector and to promote their efforts, the Indian Institute of
Packaging (IIP - www.iip-in.com), a WPO member, introduced the
PACMACHINE Awards in 1992. The main objective was to recognize the excellence
with innovative concepts in design and development in packaging machinery
particularly for import substitution and promoting exports. This year there
were four categories including Packaging Machinery, Packaging Conversion
Machinery, Other Packaging Machinery and Supporting Packaging Machinery.
The Jury was composed by reputed institutions
and industry as you can see below:
- Tanweer Alam, Director-IIP
- Samir Limaye, Director & Immediate Past
President, Institute of Packaging Machinery Manufacturers of India (IPMMI)
- Sudhakar Umale, Head of Department, Sardar
Patel College of Engineering
- Priam Pillai, Professor, Pillai College of
Entries were judged as per the laid down
parameters and graded by the respective Jury Members. On the Parameters for
declaration of winning nominations, as agreed by all Jury Members, following
entries are shortlisted as winners for the year 2020:
Margo Dangler Automation
Jyothy Labs Ltd
SPM 1200L- 7A Smart Machine
Shubham Flexipack Packaging Machines Pvt Ltd
Induction Cap Sealer for IP65 Application
Electronics Devices Worldwide Pvt Ltd
Tube Capping Machine: CP-130-OR
Technoshell Automations Pvt Ltd
Integrated Strapping Machine
Signode India Limited
System Automation for A3/A4 Paper Reams
Packaging machinery sector, complies of making
Packaging Converting Machines, Product Packaging Machines and allied equipment,
have adopted modern technology and even exported to developed economies of
the world. Many of the Indian Packaging Machinery Manufacturers are well
known for producing some sophisticated machineries. Specific features that
attract the overseas buyer to the Indian market are flexibility in
manufacturing and price of equipment. While meeting the local industry demands
to a great extent, the value of Indian Packaging machinery export is also at
WPO participates in PKN Podcast Ep 12: Save
Food Packaging report
In this episode, Lindy Hughson, Managing
Editor & Publisher of PKN Packaging News, talks with Alan Adams MAIP, Sustainability
Director at Sealed Air APAC and Nerida Kelton MAIP, Wpo Vice President
Sustainability & Save Food and Executive Director of the Australian
Institute of Packaging (AIP – www.aipack.com.au), a
WPO member. Both Sealed Air and the AIP are consortium members for the Save
Food Packaging Project for the Fight Food Waste CRC.
The key topic of this episode was the launch
of the first Save Food Packaging Design Industry Insights report from the AIP,
in partnership with RMIT, under the banner of the CRC's Save Food Packaging
Project. The report reveals the extent of the problem when it comes to food
manufacturers taking responsibility for preventing food waste.
The Save Food Packaging Consortium is made up
of the Australian Institute of Packaging (AIP) as project lead, RMIT as the
research partner. Project contributors are Zipform Packaging, Sealed Air,
Multivac and APCO; project partners are Plantic Technologies, Result Group and
Ulma Packaging; and the extension network consists of Australian Food Cold
Chain Council (AFCCC), Australian Food and Grocery Council (AFGC) and the
Australian Institute of Food Science and Technology (AIFST).
Check the podcast https://player.whooshkaa.com/episode?id=796584
IoPP and AIP form partnership to expand reach of industry’s Salary Survey
The Institute of Packaging Professionals (IoPP – www.iopp.org) and the
Australian Institute of Packaging (AIP – www.aipack.com.au),
both WPO members, are partners to take IoPP´s traditional Salary Survey to the
Australasian region for the first time. IoPP will continue to be the
authoritative force in reporting salary and employment information within the
packaging industry in North America, and the partnership with the AIP will
expand the reach of the survey into new regions.
IoPP has released its Salary Survey annually
for the past 15 years, reporting on compensation and employment trends in North
America as that continent’s only such survey focused on the packaging industry.
“The survey results for the Australasian Regional will be developed from data
derived from questions pertaining to our region that have been added to the
Salary Survey in North America,” explains Nerida Kelton, AIP Executive Director
and WPO Vice President Sustainability & Save Food. “The AIP is seeking
input from packaging professionals in our regional to ensure that we can
develop a definitive resource for our industry for the region, as IoPP has done
Adds Jane Chase, IoPP Executive Director, “We are thrilled to partner with the
AIP in expanding on this important research each year for the packaging
industry. Given COVID-19’s impact on the world, there has never been a more
important time to respond to the Salary Survey, and the timing of our survey’s
expansion into a new region could not be better.”
The Salary Survey includes a number of open-ended questions to gain a detailed
perspective on a variety of factors affecting compensation and employment. The
report created from this survey, and made available to industry professionals,
does more than reporting salary information. It touches on current employment
status and educational factors, future career prospects and more.
Separate reports summarizing the data for both the U.S. and Australasian areas
will become available in the near future. Both organizations will offer their
final 2021 reports at no cost to those who complete the survey.
From the Board
WPO new Global Ambassador
Hiroko Akieda, International Business
Manager of Japan Packaging Institute (JPI – www.jpi.or.jp), a WPO
member, is now part of WPO Global Ambassador team. Her main focus will be the
Corporate Partners, besides all the regular responsibilities of WPO Ambassadors
- be directly responsible to the President
- officially represent the WPO at all times
- responsible for particular projects
- support the vice Presidents when required
- ad hoc functioning where needs arise within
- attend executive meetings (welcome to but
not imperative to)
- have no vote on the executive committee
If you have any question, Hiroko´s e-mail
is [email protected].
WPO launches ‘World Pack Talk Show’
The first interview of the series ‘World
Pack Talk Show’, WPO new communication project, was recorded with Sriman
Banerjee, Head of Packaging Development & CDE R&D Pharma Sci of Takeda
Pharmaceutical (www.takeda.com), WPO Corporate Partner. He was
interviewed by Liliam Benzi, WPO Press & Communications Liaison Officer, about
trends and innovations in the pharmaceutical packaging industry, considering
the challenges imposed by Covid-19.
The main message: “Pandemic brought new
challenges to the packaging industry. Smart and active packaging and fast
tracking systems seem to be the most relevant. The mission is to guarantee the
availability of products and the interaction products/patients in the safety of
their homes. And more than ever: packaging is part of the solution and not part
of the problem.”
The YouTube link to access the video is https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3nesDM4f4ys
Enjoy, watch and share!
WPO invites members to virtual Board
According to the actual Covid-19 situation,
WPO Board Meeting, scheduled to May 2021, will be virtual again. The program
starts on Monday, 17th of May with the Executive Meeting (restricted to the
executive members of WPO only).
On Tuesday, 18th of May members are invited
to take part in the Corporate Partner program. The parallel Working Groups meetings
- Sustainability, Education and Marketing – will be held on Wednesday, 19th of
May and WPO Board Meeting will take place on Thursday, 20th May.
As the time for the meetings will be
limited compared to a “normal” WPO Board Meeting, there will be no presentation
at the meeting itself – only slots for (short) discussion and voting.
One week before the meeting, members will
receive an e-mail with a shared folder where they will find all presentations
and documents to prepare for the meeting.
Additionally, there is the possibility to
write and report questions to the WPO Board prior to the meeting. Soon you will
receive the link for registration.
For additional information, contact General
Secretary, Johannes Bergmair, by e-mail [email protected].
WPO and ProPack Asia webinars
As part of the agreement between WPO and
ProPack Asia (Informa Group), WPO President, Pierre Pienaar and some WPO Execs
have been participating in webinars organized by the show. The link below takes
to the webinar in which Pierre and Nerida Kelton, WPO Vice President
Sustainability & Save Food, spoke about ‘Sustainable Packaging’.
Watch and share! https://youtu.be/rNizFOxUkhg.
AIP supports Cold Chain Professional
WPO member, Australian Institute of Packaging
(AIP – www.aipack.com.au) announced that the first
industry-wide training program aimed at improving the Cold Chain Credentials of
those responsible for the integrity and safety of Australia’s chilled and
frozen food supply is now available.
The Cold Chain Professional Development Series
has been developed in response to cold chain losses from temperature abuse,
which have been identified by recent national studies sponsored by the
The Australian Food Cold Chain Council
(AFCCC), with input and support from AIP and the Produce Marketing Association
(PMA), has taken the lead by producing the first of five Cold Food Codes. This
is the first online training program of its kind for those who work at the many
levels in the cold chain, in transport, distribution centres, loading docks,
food industries and retail outlets.
According to WPO President, Pierre Pienaar,
that is also Education Director of AIP, ‘We in packaging remain closely
involved in the Cold Supply Chain and currently excessive food is being damaged
whilst in transit. These Cold Chain Training Modules focus on the issues and
explain in an ‘easy guide’, possible ways how we can mitigate problems and
potential damage to ensure the safe and efficient delivery of goods to our
customers. It is a ‘must’ for all packaging technologists, as well as everyone
within the cold supply chain. I can assure you that if you follow these
guidelines you will significantly reduce food waste in the supply chain.”
To register for the ‘Basic Principles of
Thermometers and how to use them Training Module’ access http://aipack.com.au/education/cold-chain-training-modules/.
WPO announces ‘Lifetime Achievement Award’
Winner for 2021, Ralph Moyle
WPO announced and posted on its webpage the
winner in the ‘Lifetime Achievement Award’, organized on yearly basis. The
judges, from all over the world, elected Ralph Moyle, from Australia.
“The WPO ‘Lifetime Achievement Award’, in
the field of packaging, was established with the aim of recognising
practitioners, from all packaging disciplines, who have made a significant
national or international contribution in packaging over a prolonged and
sustained period”, says Pierre Pienaar, WPO President. In so doing, the WPO
acknowledges and rewards excellence in all aspects of packaging science,
technology, design and application across the globe.
Pierre completes, “It is these people who
have consistently pushed the boundaries in advancing packaging to serve the
needs of an ever more demanding consumer base. These prestigious awards will
celebrate and preserve, in perpetuity, the collective achievements of these
Ralph Moyle FAIP, CPP, is a stalwart of the
packaging industry in Australia, where he has contributed significantly for
over 40 years. Ralph is an experienced packaging consultant with an extensive
knowledge in the manufacturing industry; he has been expanding packaging
knowledge as a mentor, trainer and educator across Australia, New Zealand and
parts of South East Asia. Moyle is a born leader and his extensive years in the
industry have seen him lead many teams across Food and Beverage industries. He
continues to put his hand up to help the industry, to mentor students, to
mentor team members and is always there to help.
Annually, each WPO member (representing a
voting member) is able to make up to one nomination for ‘Lifetime Achievement
Award’, through an online registration form. The honorees will be recognised
during the WorldStar Award Ceremony planned for May 2021.
Check all the winners of WorldStar Awards
at the new webpage www.worldstar.org.
WPO announces winners of WorldStar Student Awards 2020
The judging has been completed and the
results of the winners for WorldStar Student 2020
Awards, organized by WPO, are available on the WorldStar Student Awards website www.WorldStarStudent.org.
The photos illustrate Gold, Silver and
Bronze winners from a total of 219 entries and the 3 main winners are:
- Gold - Ojo is a
solution-oriented nail polish bottle for the risk of spillage and contamination
in daily use of nail polish. (Turkey)
- Silver - Honey
extruder, an innovative, functional and 100% sustainable dosing bottle of
- Bronze - The pen box
is designed to increase the use of fibreboard in everyday life; it can be used
as a tabletop pen holder to move items with us, store them, and also to prevent
clutter on the table. (Turkey)
“These projects demonstrate the potential
of the new generation in creating good packaging. As I always say, each day it
becomes more important to encourage the youth to understand and participate in
the world of packaging. With them aware of the benefits and the contributions
that good packaging can give to the society and to the environment, we can be
guaranteed of a sustainable world for all”, says WPO President, Pierre Pienaar.
The entries to the 2021 competition will
open, on-line, on 1st May 2021 and details are also available on the website www.WorldStarStudent.org.
Any questions, contact the Coordinator of
the competition, Bill Marshall, by e-mail [email protected].
WPO member becomes official Supporter of
Australia, New Zealand & Pacific Islands Plastic Pact (ANZPAC)
The Australian Institute of Packaging (AIP – www.aipack.com.au), is proud to be one of the earliest
adopters of ANZPAC (www.anzpacplasticspact.org.au).
As an official Supporting Association of ANZPAC, the AIP will be working
closely with other businesses, governments and NGOs to move towards a circular
economy for plastic.
Too much plastic waste ends up in landfill and
in the region’s natural environments. In Australia, only 18% of all plastic
packaging are recovered for future use, while in New Zealand, 41% of recyclable
plastic containers are sent to landfill. A similar situation is happening in
the Pacific Islands, where over 300,000 tons of waste plastic is generated each
year. By 2040, if we fail to act, the volume of plastic on the market will
double, the annual volume of plastic entering the ocean will almost triple, and
ocean plastic stocks will quadruple.
However, a new way for addressing the plastics
issue is here. On 1 January 2021, the Australian, New Zealand and Pacific
Island Plastics Pact (ANZPAC) launched in the region a collaborative platform
for the circular economy, in which plastic never becomes waste or pollution.
ANZPAC is part of the Ellen MacArthur
Foundation’s global Plastics Pact network, a globally aligned response to
plastic waste and pollution that enables vital knowledge sharing and
coordinated action. Each Plastics Pact brings together businesses, policy makers
and NGOs around the world, who through shared ambition, combined expertise and
collaboration create regional and national solutions to plastic waste and
The ANZPAC Plastics Pact will:
- Coordinate and align
stakeholders from industry, government, academia, NGOs and industry
associations to work towards the Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s vision for a
circular economy for plastic.
- Work collaboratively towards
national and regional Plastics Pact 2025 Targets.
- Build a clearly defined roadmap
for how the region will reach them.
- Measure and communicate progress
through public annual reporting.
- Co-design and implement pioneer
initiatives, activities and solutions across the region.
- Share knowledge and experiences,
and learn from regional, national and global experts.
To find out more about
ANZPAC, visit www.anzpacplasticspact.org.au or contact Nerida Kelton by e-mail [email protected].
Message from General Secretary
The virus can´t stop
Do you feel a bit like this crushed package
in the picture? Well, it can happen these days, I guess. Still Covid-19, still
no traveling, miss all my WPO friends … zoom is marvellous, but …
I should not think too much about such
things. It’s Friday and Liliam is waiting for my report! And there are so many
things to report from WPO Secretariat! Incredible!
LibanPack took over the organisation of our
WorldStar program with beginning of 2021. I happily can report that the
hand-over procedure was easy and smooth. Thanks again to Rachel, Ian and all
their colleagues from IOM3, as well as Soha and her team, for an outstanding
good job! Watch out for the new style on WorldStar homepage!
Thanks to Kishan, we finished the upgrade
of our quality management to ISO 9001:2015 level end of the year 2020. At the
moment we are getting some trainings from Kishan so we can start with continues
improvement on the system. One of those improvements has been realized already.
Long time requested, now possible: members can do their payment to WPO (e.g.
membership fee) easily, conveniently and safe by credit card now. Thanks to
Tanja for organizing everything – she is available for any questions on that
procedure, if you need more specifics!
As reported in last newsletter we are as
active in cooperation with other international bodies as never before. The most
interesting for me is a joint action with WDO (World Design Organisation). Cannot
tell you all details here, as we are on the last meters of preparation and want
to have structured communication on this. But be aware in the next weeks – we
will start a unique program soon!
Interpack will not happen in February/March
2021 but was postponed to the next regular slot for that show in May 2023. So,
the planned joint booth/area of WPO and Messe Düsseldorf will be organized in
two years from now.
According to the actual Covid-19 situation
our WPO Board Meeting in May 2021 will be held virtually via zoom again. The
WPO Meeting program will start on Monday, 17th of May with the Executive
Meeting (restricted to the executive members of WPO only). On Tuesday, 18th of
May, you are invited to take part in the corporate partner program. The
parallel Working Groups for Sustainability, Education and Marketing will be
held on Wednesday, 19th of May. The crowning finale on Thursday, 20th May will
be WPO Board Meeting.
Meeting time will be from 11:30 to
approximately 14:30 CET (Central European Time; i.e. Stockholm, Berlin, Paris,
Prague, Vienna, Budapest, Rome) every of those given days. We will send out the
registration for the meetings and all zoom-links within the next weeks.
As the time for our sessions will be
limited compared to a “normal” WPO Board Meeting, there will be no presentation
at the meeting itself – only slots for (short) discussion and voting. One week
before the meeting, you will receive an email with a shared folder where you
find all presentations and documents to prepare for the meeting. Please
schedule enough time to go through this information prior to meeting.
Meanwhile WPO Executive Committee also
confirmed that next WorldStar Ceremony will be virtual again. Soha and her team
will give you all necessary information as soon as possible.
Optimistic as we are, the next “real”
meeting will then be South Africa 22. – 26. November 2021. Cross fingers, friends!!!
So, even if we are a bit crushed like that
box, that virus can’t stop us from working on better quality of life through
better packaging for more people!
Tanja Woschniak & Barbara Zottl
WPO General Secretary
A 'journey' through traditions driven by technology
By Liliam Benzi* who visited the exhibition at the
invitation of Japan House São Paulo
Japanese packaging combines respect for traditions with
state-of-the-art technology. Let´s say it is a technological ancestry. We are
also talking about an element with fundamental importance in Japanese culture
where the importance of packaging is evidenced by the
term Tsutsumu which means "to wrap", "to pack"
and whose ideogram symbolizes the image of a child inside its mother's womb,
referring to the idea of protecting what is precious.
In line with this concept, the Japan House São
Paulo presents the show 'Packaging: Contemporary Designs of Japan', on
display until March 14. Elaborated in partnership with Japanese Package
Design Association (JPDA), company responsible for Japan Package Design
Awards - award that celebrates, since 1985, designers that creates
packaging with focus on the premises of creativity, aesthetics, usability,
value and marketing potential - the show presents packaging that reveals much
of consumer behavior and traditions and customs of Japanese quotidian.
They are not just attractive packaging, but exquisite
examples of the importance of the act of giving as part of a complex code in
Japan. All this without forgetting that the Japanese consumer also seeks the
attributes of today: functionality, convenience, on the go consumption and
In these photos some examples of the art of Japanese
packaging supported by technology. Some points deserve more evidence as the
millenary shoyu that becomes transparent and leaves the packaging equally dark.
The rice that becomes a gift and sustainable packaging with a focus on 'kinder
projects with people and the planet'. And one of my favorites: 'air pack'
packaging for growing fresh vegetables in aseptic environment which allows the
consumption of food without the need for hygiene.
Definitely this exhibition is a unmissable trip through the
packaging universe which reinforces my belief: in Japan the packaging goes
beyond the own packaging; it is a gift that reverences the product (especially
the food) and shows respect for the final consumer.
As Natasha Barzaghi Geenen, Cultural Director of Japan House
São Paulo and curator of the exhibition, stated, "These packages say a lot
about Japanese culture; they call the attention because of their aesthetics and
the importance given to every detail, but also allow a general panorama of
consumer habits in the country. The idea is also to inspire designers and
national companies that seek this combination of product, design and
sustainability in order to deliver a complete consumer experience. The
refinement of the packaging values the product even more and deserves the same
care in its development".
The exhibition justifies why Japan is admired worldwide for
its 'wrapping' culture, which puts container and content on the same level of
importance, with quality packaging being a sign of respect to the person who
will receive the product. The packaging carries important aspects of the
concept of Omotenashi (hospitality); to treat the other well from a
design thougth to anticipate consumer needs, respecting the user and the nature.
An essential part of the object, a well thought out design values
the best of each product and can start from more traditional and millenary
techniques such as Furoshiki - millenary Japanese technique that uses
square fabrics to wrap, pack and protect the most varied types of objects by
means of moorings - even the most complex and technological, such as a lotion
bottle produced with the highest level of the industry in the use rate of super
recycled glass - 90% or more.
Finally, it is clear that in Japan, every detail matters and
should be considered with the maximum attention, revealing that the Japanese
search for perfection and sense of beauty can be perceived in daily life from
*Liliam Benzi is a specialist in communication, marketing
and business development and strategies for B2B, with emphasis on the packaging
sector. She is also the Editor of some publications, including WPO News, and is
the Communication Advisor for several companies and entities. She was elected ‘Professional
of the Year 2018’ in Brazil. She was also appointed as Press & Communication
Liaaison Officer of WPO for a second term and is the head of her company - LDB
Comunicação - since 1995 ([email protected]).
Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) can guide Sustainable
To optimise circular and sustainable design
packaging technologists need to look at the potential environmental impacts of
the product across its lifetime.
By Nerida Kelton*
Environmental impact categories can include
carbon/greenhouse gas emissions, water depletion, mineral consumption, land
transformation, eutrophication, toxicity, and many more and can be undertaken through
a Life Cycle Assessment (LCA).
This assessment can look holistically at environmental
impacts of products, and associated packaging, from raw materials, to production,
through to household, and then at end-of-life.
Now more than ever science-driven
information, that is derived from LCA, is such an important step in ensuring
that your product and packaging have the lowest environmental impact wherever
possible across the entire value chain.
When used in the packaging industry LCA can provide accurate data that can guide a business
in the choice of materials, pack shapes and sizes, but also when looking to move
to a ‘more sustainable’ material or pack. The recyclability of the packaging,
the ability to re-use and refill the packaging and meeting global and regional Packaging
Targets must also be considered and can be checked as a design choice with LCA.
Using LCA within this decision-making
process ensures that the business has all available datasets in front of them
to make informed choices. LCA can eliminate second-guessing and assumptions
about ‘Sustainable Packaging’ choices and can provide concrete information that
crosses all areas of the supply chain.
Start with a Life Cycle Map
Before you undertake a LCA establish a
cross-departmental and cross-supply chain team to create a Life Cycle Map of
your product and packaging.
The Life Cycle Map needs to provide a clear
and concise representation of the steps required to source and produce the
product-packaging system, the distribution system, as well as its use, disposal
and recovery. Determining inputs and outputs to life cycle stages on the map,
such as energy, materials and emissions should then start to reveal blind spots
and impact categories or priority areas to focus on. The map will also help to
identify areas of improvement, challenges and unexpected consequences of
possible product or packaging choices.
Streamlined LCA or Full LCA
Once you have established your Life Cycle
Map the next step is to decide whether you would like to undertake a Streamlined
LCA or a Full LCA on the product. To do this you need to define the Goal and
Scope of the LCA. You need to determine the purpose of the study i.e., internal
improvement or public claims, the system boundaries to be set, the inventory to
be collected, the impact assessment to be applied, and the interpretation
method that will enable the business to arrive at conclusions and
Streamlined LCA is ideally suited when a
business is looking to better understand the blind spots and any major areas of
focus within the life cycle of a product, or to make internal decisions about
something to change in the life cycle. Streamlined LCA can produce results
quickly, are ideal for SME’s and can invaluably assist to meet global and
regional Packaging Targets. They are also a great way to determine if a full LCA
is required thereafter.
Full Life Cycle Assessments are comprehensive
reports that meet international ISO 14040/14044 standards for Life Cycle
Assessment (LCA). The data is permitted to be used for internal assessment purposes
and within the public domain when undertaking either a standalone assessment or
when comparing more than one product or packaging system. If publicly
disseminating a study, the ISO standards suggest peer review, which is often
conducted for companies going down this road by an external panel or party. An
example of a full LCA is a comparative study called ‘Beverage and Food
Packaging in Australia and New Zealand’ that was recently commissioned by Tetra
Benefits of Life Cycle Assessment
There are so many benefits of embedding LCA
into all areas of the business including lowering environmental impacts, optimising
packaging material choices, improving the sustainability of a product and its
whole-of-life and improving your triple bottom line. Life Cycle Assessment can also
contribute to making more informed decisions when it comes to sustainability
and carbon foot printing. These decisions are made easier when a packaging
technologist embeds Life Cycle Assessment into packaging design.
When embarking on the use of LCA it is
important to note that the process is not a silver bullet. LCA should be seen
as an investigative and comparative process that can identify areas of
improvement within the whole-of-life of your product and packaging. LCA is quite
simply an additional tool in the tool belt to ensure that decisions are well-informed,
and science driven.
As Dr Karli Verghese FAIP said in her book
‘Packaging for Sustainability’, “Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) can produce convincing
evidence that intuition is no longer enough.”
*Nerida Kelton MAIP is WPO Vice President
Sustainability & Save Food.