Squaring the circle of responsible packaging

Innovation leads to smart packaging

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Barun Banerjee of Nestle, Mudit Lawania, Vinay Nalawade of Parakh Flexipack, Leeladhar Poojary of Colgate, Himanshi Mahajan of Mother Dairy and Kriti Soni of Dabur during the brand owners' panel discussion. Photo IPP
Barun Banerjee of Nestle, Mudit Lawania, Vinay Nalawade of Parakh Flexipack, Leeladhar Poojary of Colgate, Himanshi Mahajan of Mother Dairy and Kriti Soni of Dabur during the brand owners' panel discussion. Photo IPP

The PDIT2 Conference, organized by IppStar and Messe Dusseldorf India on 13 December 2019, concluded with good spirit on the evening of a generally rainy and overcast day at Pragati Maidan, Delhi. Over 120 industry professionals took part, including 30 brand owners.

The conference began with a warm welcome by Deepak Manchanda, who introduced the theme of the conference – Squaring the Circle of Responsible Packaging. The keynote sessions were delivered jointly by Cheryl Harrison, chairman, Vivia Foundation, and director of marketing, Propack, and Andrew Manly, communications director of AIPIA, who made a brief presentation introducing smart packaging. AIPIA and some of its key members such as Toppan, Kezzler, and NXP were key content supporters of the PDIT2 conference.

The brand-owner panel discussion, ‘Emerging role of modern packaging for competitiveness, convenience, and extended producer responsibility,’ was chaired by Barun Banerjee of Nestle. Leeladhar Poojary of Colgate, Vinay Nalawade of Parakh Agro, Himanshi Mahajan of Mother Dairy, and Kriti Soni of Dabur addressed EPR, responsible packaging, and the touchpoints for making these happen. There was insightful agreement on the various constraints and compelling needs for both sustainability and brand impact. An interesting cooperative solution was also suggested.

Andrew Manly of AIPIA, Roland Lartigue of Toppan Europe, Amit Banga of SB Packaging, Prasanna Sukhi of Kezzler India, N Siva Shankar of Uflex and Rohit Singhal of NXP. Photo IPP
Andrew Manly of AIPIA, Roland Lartigue of Toppan Europe, Amit Banga of SB Packaging, Prasanna Sukhi of Kezzler India, N Siva Shankar of Uflex and Rohit Singhal of NXP. Photo IPP

Nidhi Agarwal of Marico presented a detailed update on the FSSAI food safety compliances and packaging and labeling guidelines. S Chidambar, a senior packaging professional, emphasized the need for the industry to jointly face the mammoth issue of plastic use and its integration in the circular economy. His primary point is that plastic is used by industries that produce goods of far higher value than US$ 1.5 trillion, and the collective resources of these consumer product industries should be leveraged rather than fragmented and inadequately measly efforts at recycling. “The significant depletion of resources cannot be replenished since we are running out of them. We cannot throw away the tremendous energy and value that is invested in consumer products their packaging only to put them into landfills that generate methane,” he said.

Vineet Pradhanani of Encept with Naresh Khanna of IppStar. Photo IPP
Vineet Pradhanani of Encept with Naresh Khanna of IppStar. Photo IPP

The conference proceeded to its design, innovation, and active and intelligent packaging sessions. The AIPIA session moderated by Andrew Manly included presentations by Roland Lartigue of Toppan, Prasanna Sukhi of Kezzler India, and Rohit Singhal of NXP. The session recognizing the EPR initiatives for packaging waste management contained presentations by Shubhi Sachan and Rakesh Kumar of Recykal. Their presentations outlined what is being done to recycle flexible packaging laminates. It was quite interesting to have on the same platform, a provider of plastic waste, and a customer looking for plastic waste to recycle in its plant.

The Covid-19 pandemic led to the country-wide lockdown on 25 March 2020. It will be two years tomorrow as I write this. What have we learned in this time? Maybe the meaning of resilience since small companies like us have had to rely on our resources and the forbearance of our employees as we have struggled to produce our trade platforms.

The print and packaging industries have been fortunate, although the commercial printing industry is still to recover. We have learned more about the digital transformation that affects commercial printing and packaging. Ultimately digital will help print grow in a country where we are still far behind in our paper and print consumption and where digital is a leapfrog technology that will only increase the demand for print in the foreseeable future.

Web analytics show that we now have readership in North America and Europe amongst the 90 countries where our five platforms reach. Our traffic which more than doubled in 2020, has at times gone up by another 50% in 2021. And advertising which had fallen to pieces in 2020 and 2021, has started its return since January 2022.

As the economy approaches real growth with unevenness and shortages a given, we are looking forward to the PrintPack India exhibition in Greater Noida. We are again appointed to produce the Show Daily on all five days of the show from 26 to 30 May 2022.

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– Naresh Khanna

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