PI and Empack aerial view 2

In the latest edition of the Spotlight, multi-format event organiser Easyfairs unveils the speaker line up for the Packaging Innovations & Empack 2024 event.

From leading creative minds and those charged with delivering the sustainable transition to brands - Defra officials, technologists and creatives - the 2024 lineup will offer a 360-degree view of packaging.

As the UK’s flagship packaging exhibition prepares for its annual moment in the spotlight, its packed schedule will again look to deliver a unique, 360-degree view of the packaging sector.

With over 30 free-to-attend sessions, panels, interviews and more, the conference programme promises to aid registered visitors with their packaging objectives through educational content and pioneering solutions from various industries, markets and professionals.

“We spend so much time creating and curating what we feel is an unmissable lineup because we consistently get positive feedback about our ability to develop a pool of knowledge sharing and ideas from all sectors,” said Easyfairs’ marketing manager Naomi Stewart. “It’s a lineup and an experience you just wouldn’t get anywhere else.”

On Day 1, Nick Kirk, technical director at British Glass, will draw on over three decades of experience to articulate the challenges of ensuring that glass is a sustainable packaging option for the future, while Nicola Harrington, packaging development director UKI at DHL, will delve into the need to radically re-think packaging supply chains.

The experienced former principal engineer of Dyson - Ben Edmonds – will present his unique session titled ‘Innovation & the Power of YET: Releasing your full potential’ on the Innovation & Design Stage, while the Circular Economy Stage sees Julien Tremblin, general manager of TerraCycle Europe, deliver his 45-minute keynote called ‘Sustainable Packaging: Solutions for right now and the future’.

Defra’s newly-appointed head of EPR scheme administrator and former ORRL executive director Margaret Bates, who has over 30 years of experience in waste management and recycling, and Martin Kersh, executive director of the Foodservice Packaging Association, will lead two opposing teams of industry experts in debating whether the government’s collection and packaging reforms will make no difference to climate change.

PI and Empack attendees

On the Supply Chain & Manufacturing Stage, Josephine Coombe, chief commercial officer of Nulogy, Anita Donohoe, group managing director of logistics & fulfilment at Kinaxia Logistics and Thomas Verbeke, global coman excellence manager at Danone, are set to delve into the evolution of the external supply chain network.

Other notable Day 1 speakers include Tom Barton, founder of Honest Burgers, Daniel Hoare, director of sales for Congo Brands (Prime) and Felix Gruenewald, associate partner, McKinsey, who will all be on hand to offer their sought-after expertise.

A wide-ranging Day 2 sees Fraser Doherty MBE, co-founder and CEO of Beer52 and Wine52, share his adventures in packaging, while representatives from Aldi UK, Ocado Retail Ltd, CHEP and InnovateUK will share their ‘Lessons from The Refill Coalition’ and Peter MacQueen, principal lecturer for apprenticeships at Sheffield Hallam University, will discuss all things packaging recruitment.

Paul Davidson, UKRI director of Smart Sustainable Plastic Packaging Challenge at Innovate UK will then chair a panel on returnable and refillable packaging with guests including Stuart Chidley, co-founder of both Beauty Kitchen and Reposit, Sam Higginson, head of food technology at Marks & Spencer, Abel & Cole’s sustainability lead Hugo Lynch, and more.

Zoi Roupakia, research associate at the Institute for Manufacturing at the University of Cambridge will moderate a Women in Manufacturing panel on the Supply Chain Stage comprising Emma Verkaik, CEO of the BCMPA, Jo Stephenson, managing director of Print & Packaging B2B marketing specialists PHD Marketing, Nicola Peacock, senior relationship manager at The Printing Charity, and Nicola Jones, steel packaging recycling manager at TATA Steel.

Elsewhere on Day 2, Andrew Masterson, detective inspector of the Police Intellectual Property Crime Unit (PIPCU) at City London Police will speak about a new dawn for brand protection, alongside other discussions including OPRL and IOM3’s panel, ‘Maximise the EPR Conversation in Order to Succeed’.

To view the full schedule of speakers with timings, please visit www.packagingbirmingham.com. Visitor tickets are still available, and those interested are advised to register for free sooner rather than later.

This content was sponsored by Easyfairs.