2nd Specialty Films and Flexible Packaging Global Conference 2013

Chemicals & Petrochemicals Manufacturers Association (CPMA) along with Elite Plus Business Services Pvt. Ltd. organized 2nd two day Specialty Films and Flexible Packaging Global Conference 2013 at Hotel Grand Hyatt  in Mumbai on 29th/30th August 2013.
The conference was attended by appx 700 participants (including speakers, session chairmen and media) representing 337 Companies from over 21 Countries.

The conference addressed one of the most vibrant sectors of Indian Consumers i.e. flexible packaging. Plastics play a very important role in the packaging sector by offering solutions to virtually every industrial and consumer activity. Flexible Packaging provides Content Protection, Anti Pilferage, Extended Shelf Life, Pleasant feel, Consumer convenience and most importantly Improved Health and Hygiene.

Global packaging Industry is valued at app US$ 695 Bn out of which Flexible plastic packaging accounts for US$ 138 Bn. Other form of packaging are Board, Rigid plastics, Metal and Glass. NA, WE and Asia each have app 25% share of Flexible packaging. Flexible packaging is growing at 2% pa in the developed world while growth in developing world is app 8%.

North America leads the usage of flexible packaging, followed by Asia.   In Asia, China is by far, the largest user of flexible packaging followed by Japan and then, India.  But if we look at per capita consumption of Flexible packaging, India and China have lot to cover. Present per capita flexible consumption is highest in US, UK, Japan, Germany, Australia and Switzerland .However, India is expected to show sustained growth over the next several years as life style in India is changing and retail revolution has just begun.

In India packaging is app US $16 Bn industry out of which app US$ 5 Bn is accounted for flexible packaging and growing at ~ 15% pa. The major segments for Flexible packaging in India are FMCG, Non-Food and PM&G i.e. Pan Masala and Gutka.

The global plastic production, which was merely 1.5 million tons in 1950, has now increased to 200 million tons in 2012.
India consumes app 10 million Mts of all plastics per year. In India Flexible packaging for consumer and sacking for Industrial products consumes app 4.0 Million MTs of polymers which is almost half of all the polymers consumed in India.

The conference  addressed various issues such as Overview of Global and Domestic flexible packaging sector, Imperatives for sustainable growth, recent developments in polymer materials  both in the commodity and in the specialty categories, processing technologies and surface finishing, M&A happening in packaging industry,  recent developments in multilayer film structures,  post-extrusion lamination , coating and adhesives, Flexible films use for security and anti-counterfeiting  for a variety of food and non-food packaging applications.

Opening session Keynote speakers were doyens of India and International packaging and raw material suppliers such as Mr Amit Ray CEO UFlex Ltd, Mr Wim Roels CEO Bourouge Pte Ltd, Mr Ralf K Wunderlich MD of Amcor Flexibles and Mr Harpreet Singh Tibb Marketing Director Kellogg India. They presented the Indian and Global overview of Flexible packaging Industry, raw material advances and the consumer preferences shaping the packaging industry.

 The conference also addressed the most sensitive issue of sustainability and environment.  During the entire conference, two major themes were constantly discussed which were Sustainability and Innovation. It was clearly brought out that the producer, consumer and local municipality coupled with a profitable business model, all have equal role to play in arriving at a sustainable solution.  A lively panel discussion on �Waste to Wealth� looked at various aspects of recycling and producing useful articles out of close to 4 million mts of waste the flexible films market generates annually. Presently single material plastic waste recycling is relatively easy compared to multi material plastic waste. Mutli material plastic waste is generated by multilayer laminates which ware essential for flexible packaging to provide barrier properties to packaging. Barrier properties are needed for packing of food products to retain aroma, freshness and prevent migration of oils etc.

Global giants in the manufacture of plastic converting machinery were present in full force and demonstrated new range of high throughput machines, which are now available. These machines conserve energy and provide better tolerance to the finished product. Advances in digital printing were showcased. Digital printing enable constant online change on batches to have shorter runs of a few hinder meters of film as well as reduces considerably time required to prepare sample output and are ideally suited for test marketing of packaging with very small runs of end product packs..
Dinner speech by Sh Harsh Mariwala, Chairman, Marico group was the special highlight. He dwelt in detail on the current economic situation and the consumer revolution taking place in India and how innovative packaging is helping in reducing wastages as well as brand building of hitherto unbranded products sold in India. He was very optimistic about the growth of Indian Economy.

The organizers also presented Lifetime Achievement Awards to Mr. Ashok Jaipuria, MD of   Cosmo Films. The award was in recognition to contribution made by Cosmo Films to make available BOPP films to flexible packaging industry by his Company.
The second award was bestowed posthumously on Shri Chandrakant Doshi, Former Chairman & Managing Director of Rajoo Engineering, who in a span of app 30 years has become a global giant in the area of Plastic processing machines for the flexible packaging sector.

Overall, speakers addressed all aspects of this vibrant industry and provided tremendous insight into the bright future for sustained growth of this industry.

This 2nd Conference was a resounding success with delegates thrilled with the presentations content of renowned speakers and the opportunity it provided to network with industry peers. The conference brought together under one roof all sectors connected to the Speciality Films and Packaging sector from resin producer to end users. Niche segments of Commodity polymer, Specialty Polymer, Functional additives, Primary processing machinery, Secondary processing machinery, Lamination and Printing, Cutting and slitting Machines, sustainability Experts , Brand Managers of FMCG and Food & Dairy Products, and End consumers etc. , all  participated in huge numbers .