CPP EXPO partnered with PACK EXPO and PROCESS EXPO again, and in Las Vegas in October, the relationship resulted in double-digit growth for the combined industry event across all meaningful, measurable categories.

When compared to the 2005 event, this year’s PACK EXPO/CPP EXPO/PROCESS EXPO show was up 10 percent in visitor attendance, 20 percent in exhibitor personnel attendance, and 13 percent in overall attendance. In addition, the 2007 event featured 11 percent more exhibiting companies and the educational seminars drew 15 percent more participants. The growth of these numbers point to the fact that trade shows are a healthy, viable, and even necessary part of the flexible packaging industry, as more and more decision-makers are attending these events to improve their company’s place within the marketplace.

Combined, the three shows brought together 1,776 exhibitors in 701,326 square feet on expo space, including 150 exhibitors and 28,675 sq. ft. from CPP EXPO alone.
Attendance 2005 2007 % Growth
Visitors* 21,785 23,960 10
Exibitor Personnel* 11,247 13,492 20
Total Attendance* 33,032 37,452 13
Exibiting Companies 1,149 1,281 11
Conference Participants 918 1,058 15
* Includes CPP Expo and Process Expo data

“PACK EXPO Las Vegas continues to attract a strong buying audience because attendees know that they will find the innovations they need to grow their business and create strong brands,” said Charles D. Yuska, president and CEO of PMMI. “PMMI was extremely pleased to see the strong growth in international attendance following a dedicated marketing effort to attract the international buying audience from key market segments.”

A Sustainable Event

The main topic within the industry is sustainability, and to the surprise of few this also this extended throughout nearly every aspect of the Las Vegas event, as many of the educational sessions discussed on sustainable initiatives and issue and even the trade show floor had a ‘green’ feel to it.

More than 25 percent of the exhibitor booths featured packaging solutions highlighting some aspect of sustainability including reduction in scrap, raw material usage, recycling, operational efficiency, reduction in energy usage and biopolymers.

During his keynote speech, David Acheson, assistant commissioner for food safety at the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) alerted the industry to the fact that a new government food safety approach is in the works.

“The new plan, once it’s cleared, will have more specifics to build better prevention, stronger intervention and faster response components,” he said, noting that focusing on just one of the three components would not suffice. “We need a new approach to food safety and food defense across the board.”

John A. Luke Jr., CEO, Mead Westvaco, discussed the leading-edge sustainability efforts of his company, as he challenged industry to take a “holistic” look at sustainability to ensure that industry moves beyond the simple construct of “reuse, reduce and recycle.”

Exhibitor Floor Highlights

Presto’s booth offered a look at its new Fresh-Lock Color Reveal technology, a new zipper system that allows the user to know that the zipper is closed via a color indicator. The color indicator appears when the zipper is securely closed, and is available in custom colors.

Ampac’s new Wetbone drinking pouch for dogs generated all the buzz around the company’s booth. The Wetbone Water To Go for dogs, is the first-ever flexible drinking pouch package developed specifically for dogs. The 16-ounce dog-bone shaped pouch features two compartments – a reservoir for the purified, vitamin-enhanced water at the bottom and a “drinking bowl” at the top. The pouch is a three-layer, polyester/foil/linear-low-density polyethylene lamination.

Word around the show was that after the first day, the Wetbone was the leading vote-getter in the 2007 Pack Expo Selects award program, where attendees vote for the package they feel is the most innovative at the show.

Bosch, and its Doboy business unit, was displaying its new TFT Bag Sealer for polypropylene bags, best suited for a variety of packaged bulk products, including pet food, lawn and garden products, agricultural chemicals and dry resins. The sealer trims, folds and tapes woven polypropylene bagging material to provide a sturdy, durable, yet easy-to-open seal. Bosch’s booth also featured its B-500M continuous band sealer, a medical-grade machine that meets industrial validation requirements.

Zip-Pak used the Pack Expo show floor to unveil its new Zip-Pak Slider for large format bags, a first in the industry. The new slider enables a resealable closure on laminate and multi-wall paper bags in large format applications such as pet food, bulk wild birdseed and agricultural products like potting soil. The new slider zipper requires no alteration to the package design or construction, and is available for packages up to 55 pounds.