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‘Who’s Who’ of Major Brands and Experts Line Up For Inaugural Packaging Conference

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‘Who’s Who’ of Major Brands and Experts Line Up For Inaugural Packaging Conference

‘Who’s Who’ of Major Brands and Experts Line Up For Inaugural Packaging Conference
January 10
12:19 2013
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A prestigious line-up that reads like a who’s who of packaging experts and major brands has been unveiled by easyFairs for its inaugural conference, with keynotes from Unilever, Procter & Gamble, SABMiller, Iconoculture and Gü.

The high-level yet highly practical two-day conference running throughout the easyFairs PACKAGING INNOVATIONS show at the NEC on 27 & 28 February 2013, will also feature experts from Kingfisher, Nestlé, Alliance Boots, Mintel, Space NK, the NHS, Waitrose, Wm Morrison Supermarkets, British American Tobacco, Heineken International and DHL.

These major names will draw on their own experiences and insights as they address the top packaging concerns for senior strategists and decision makers working in the UK today. Matt Benyon, Managing Director of easyFairs UK, explains the approach for the conference: “In-depth research among potential delegates has completely shaped the conference programme. We asked people ‘what is most concerning you, and who would you most like to hear sharing their experiences?”

He adds: “People told us they want practical content, with lots of real life examples; content they can take back to the office and confidently apply knowing it has come from best-of-breed brands they respect and trust. I’m proud to say, that’s exactly what we have lined-up.”

International Growth Through Innovation

Ron Khan, Global Packaging Director at Unilever, and part of Unilever’s Global Packaging Leadership Team, will kick the conference off with ‘Creating global packaging opportunities across dynamic and diverse markets’. By exploring the challenges, together with opportunities, of engaging with a diversity of consumers and markets, plus the best practice management of the supply chain for global innovation and how and why do you deploy your sustainable strategy in packaging at a global level? This session will provide the perfect opportunity to ask the head of a leading global brand any questions whose answers are crucial to growing your business internationally through packaging.

James Averdieck, founder of Gü Chocolate Puds, will be sharing his insight into the vital role of its revolutionary packaging concept in brand positioning and the successful launch and development of the Gü brand. With a Gü pud being eaten somewhere in the world approximately every two seconds, the session will divulge the secrets to winning coveted supermarket shelf space and consumer loyalty.

The Online Consumer & Sustainability

A massive issue for every organisation is the move online. So appropriately, the conference will explore the challenge of coping with an increasingly diversified market. Kay Hedges, Group Packaging Development Manager at Kingfisher, will address ‘Does packaging design matter as consumers move online?’  Building on this theme, Dr Benjamin Punchard, Senior Global Packaging Analyst at Mintel, will explore how to engage with customers digitally, through the web, smart phones, in-store and social media. His talk will include practical advice on the role within packaging of global innovations such as QR codes, mobile image recognition, augmented reality, RFID and NFC technologies.

The London and South East Packaging Society will also be chairing a session investigating ‘Revolutionising branding and design’. As part of this Barry Jones from the Society will moderate as Ben Mortimer, Conceptualisation Manager at Nestlé R&D, considers how they embed the customer in their design conceptualisation.Simon McMahon, Graphic & Packaging Manager from Sprue Safety Products, will discuss how they have revolutionised the way smoke alarms are packaged, recreating the shopper experience for safety products. 

With latest developments in sourcing and procuring packaging another hot topic on the packaging agenda, Gordon Stewart, Director at The Packaging Society, will chair a case study from Alliance Boots. Dr Steve Owen, Technical Consultant in Consumer Goods, Polymers and Packaging Quality, Ethics & Supplier Development,  and Gary Woodhouse, Business Improvement Manager, will examine the best approach to ‘Modernising the supply chain – lean models for global packaging supply’, with sourcing from the Far East on the agenda.

Sustainability is a theme that runs through the programme. An expert panel discussion later in the day on ‘PET versus glass’, with Steve Jackson, Packaging Development Manager at Wm Morrison Supermarkets, and Regine Barr, Director of Product Development & Supply at Space NK, will give delegates a clear idea of how to evaluate both options. They will explore which solution is greener, which consumer groups care, and how PET compares with Tetra-PAK and other thin-wall packaging solutions. 

A closing address on ‘How to develop a holistic sustainability strategy’ delivered by Peter Singleton, Principle Scientist/Engineer, Global Blades&Razors at Procter & Gamble, will round off the first day.

Labelling & Digital Print

Labelling and digital print are key areas addressed on the second day of the conference.  Douglas Hutt, Global Packaging Materials Development Consultant at SABMiller, will kick-off with The future of digital innovations on packaging’. He will share the company’s insights on the art of designing for a global audience, how and where to apply digital innovations, plus the brand protection technologies that are available.

Els Dijkhuizen, Heineken® Design & Concept Development Manager, Global Commerce at HEINEKEN International, will draw on the global brand’s own experience when it comes to ‘Creating powerful customised branding’.  This will include how to decide whether direct digital print rather than labels will work best for your packaging, plus the new opportunities for personalisation.

A panel discussion rounding up the pros and cons of ‘Digital printing on pack versus labelling’ will see Karen Graley, Packaging & Reprographics Manager at Waitrose, and Paul Young, Director, Head of Packaging Services EMEA at DHL, weigh-up considerations such as cost, print quality, anti-counterfeiting, brand protection and logistic demands.

Building on the anti-counterfeiting and brand protection themes, Neil Lawrence, AIDC Programme Manager at NHS, and Daniel Hubert, Head of Supply Chain Tracking & Verification for British American Tobacco, will draw on their experiences of the ‘Effective track and trace methods for brand and consumer protection’. This session will include smart labelling and other technologies coming on stream designed to boost security.

Bringing the entire conference to a close, two experts from Iconoculture – David Luttenberger, VP/Packaging Strategist, and Greg Hodge, Director, Marketing Strategist, Global Retail – will deliver a talk entitled ‘Innovating for the future’. This will help set future agendas by exploring how the consumer will have to be reached, how the supply chain will change, the technologies and materials that will become the norm, what new regulations to expect and how packaging roles will change.

For further information on prices and how to book, please call +44 (0)20 8843 8800 or visit

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