While the kind of collaboration Dow has pioneered and refined since interpack 2014 benefits the whole value chain, the commercial advantages are clear.
“The idea of a company like Dow selling solutions rather than raw material by the kilo was a foreign idea ten years ago,” Mr Constante remarked. “However, the market is far more receptive to the idea today. This is of course reinforced by external market pressures such as the need to reduce packaging materials.”
Despite this significant progress, however, the collaborative adventure can still be regarded as a work in progress. Mr Constante concluded by hinting at shift in direction that could make for radically different results by 2020:
“Collaborative innovation is a continuing journey. Our approach is evolving as we learn about both the possibilities and the barriers. For instance, we have found that small scale projects and prototyping can be problematic for brand owners. It can be an obstacle to getting large brand owners on board. Therefore, as a next step we intend to work more with co-packers, who are in a position to create the bridge between prototyping and large scale production.”