FACHPACK 2022: European packaging industry gathers in Nuremberg

“Transition In Packaging” is the key theme of the FACHPACK trade fair, to be held in Nuremberg from 27 to 29 September 2022. This describes the transformation currently taking place in the European packaging industry. More sustainability, more e-Commerce and increasing digitalization are just some of the driving themes. Then there are the current challenges such as the shortage of skilled workers, high power costs and disrupted supply chains. “The dynamics in the packaging industry have never been greater,” says Heike Slotta, Executive Director NürnbergMesse. “But despite that, or perhaps because of it, companies in the sector are very strong on design and innovation.” The key theme of “Transition in Packaging” will be reflected at the stands of the 1,145 exhibitors (2021: 789), in the extensive lecture programme, in the fascinating special shows and in the award presentations. Visitors from the consumer and industrial goods sectors will be impressed.

FACHPACK offers a compact yet comprehensive overview of the products and services relating to the packaging process chain for industrial and customer goods – i.e. packaging and the associated technology and processes. This year’s event will extend to nine exhibition halls. Of the 1,145 exhibitors, 42 percent will travel to Nuremberg from outside Germany, the majority from Turkey, Italy, Austria, the Netherlands, Poland, Switzerland, Belgium, the Czech Republic and France.

A good half of the exhibitors are active in packaging materials and packaging accessories, and about one-third in the area of packaging machines and labelling and palletizing systems. About 15 percent work in the area of package printing and finishing, in-house logistics and services for the packaging industry.

“We are very pleased that, once again, we can report a significant increase in exhibitor numbers and exhibition space compared to the previous FACHPACK a year ago,” says Phillip Blass, Director FACHPACK, NürnbergMesse. “Many prominent market leaders will be present, we have attracted new companies, and there are also a number of former exhibitors who have rediscovered FACHPACK. FACHPACK has moved on from the pandemic.”

Inspirations: New developments from the forums

FACHPACK perceives itself as an innovator and a source of inspiration for the sector, which is why it is once again organizing a comprehensive programme of about 160 lectures in the PACKBOX (Hall 9), TECHBOX (Hall 3C) and INNOVATIONBOX (Hall 5) forums. Current sector topics such as environmentally friendly packaging, digitalization, e-commerce, and also the shortage of skilled labour, supply chain bottlenecks and raw material prices will be covered.

In PACKBOX, the topics are “Market Experience & Market Expectation” (27 September), “Sustainable design & material” (28 September) and “Packaging digital & smart” (29 September). In TECHBOX, the programme includes “Innovation & Climate Strategy” (27 September), “New business models in packaging and mechanical engineering/Attracting and securing skilled workers and employees” (28 September) and “Efficiency & Digitalization” (29 September). In the exhibitor forum, INNOVATIONBOX, exhibitors can present their innovations to the trade visitors on site in 30-minute presentations: www.fachpack.de/en/programme

myFACHPACK: Expanding the in-person trade fair into the digital world

Once again this year, the digital expansion myFACHPACK will be made available for matchmaking and sharing knowledge. This new tool offers visitors the opportunity to network with exhibitors, partners and speakers. During the trade fair, the programme from the PACKBOX, TECHBOX and INNOVATIONBOX lecture forums will be livestreamed to myFACHPACK, and will also be available there after the event. myFACHPACK can be used on desktop platforms, and also via an app on mobile terminals: www.fachpack.de/en/myFACHPACK

Inspiration: Special show on packaging design in Hall 7

Under the headings of “Address”, “Amaze” and “Advance”, the special show “Transition in packaging by design”  in Hall 7 – a collaborative effort by bayern design and NürnbergMesse – will present selected examples of packaging design in which designers put packaging to strategic use: as a means of communication or of interaction, and as a place to develop sustainable materials. The innovations on display range from A as in Augmented Reality (AR) to Z as in the zeerooo reusable system, and illustrate new ways forward for the packaging industry. Along similar lines to the special show categories of “Address”, “Amaze” and “Advance”, PACKBOX will also include presentations by prominent designers on Wednesday 28 September 2022 from 13:00 to 14:00.

Innovation: Start-ups in Hall 5

Fresh, unconventional ideas and products to resolve packaging questions are more in demand than ever. Visitors can find these among the 24 start-ups in the packaging sector in Hall 5, at the sponsored BMWK (the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Protection) pavilion for young, innovative companies and in the international start-up area. This is where newcomers will demonstrate and discuss their new products and processes with interested packaging specialists.

Achievements honoured: German Packaging Award 2022

At FACHPACK 2022 the stage will once again be set for the winners of the German Packaging Award, Europe’s top showcase for all aspects of packaging. The award is presented by the Deutsches Verpackungsinstitut (German Packaging Institute, dvi) in ten categories (Sustainability, Design & Processing, Digitalization, Young Talent, etc.) as part of the PACKBOX forum on the first day of the trade fair, 27 September 2022, starting at 16:00. The 38 prize-winners come from Germany, France, Liechtenstein, Austria, Sweden and Ukraine. This will also be the exclusive opportunity to announce the winners of the Gold Award, which recognises solutions from among the packaging award winners that represent particularly ground-breaking or pioneering innovations. “It is extremely remarkable that the companies in our industry, despite the rigours of Covid-19, the energy crisis and supply chain problems, have never wavered in their ability to innovate and design,” says Dr Bettina Horenburg, Director Corporate Communications at Siegwerk Druckfarben and Board Member at dvi. The winners of the Packaging Award qualify at the same time to participate in the World Packaging Organization WorldStar Awards. For all details please go to: www.verpackungspreis.de

Increased revenues for packaging manufacturers

Packaging manufacturers saw an increase in production and revenue in 2021, as illustrated by the latest figures from the Gemeinschaftsausschuss Deutscher Verpackungshersteller (Joint Committee of German Packaging Producers, GADV). The bulk of production was represented by paper and cardboard packaging, while plastic packaging accounted for the highest production value.

About 19.6 million tonnes of packaging materials were manufactured in 2021, which equates to a 4.8 percent increase in production volume. Production value increased significantly, by 10.9 percent, to approximately EUR 35.8 billion in 2021. As in previous years, plastic packaging accounted for the largest share of production value at about 44 percent, while paper and cardboard represented the largest share by volume of packaging materials, at about 49 percent.

Despite the positive financial results for 2021, packaging manufacturers are therefore looking to the future with mixed feelings. “Packaging is a product in daily use, and it is needed even in times of crisis,” says Johann Overath, Director-General of the Federal Association of the German Glass Industry (BV Glas) and spokesperson for GADV. “The question, however, is what form manufacturing will take in the future, and how we can keep a focus on our key targets regarding climate neutrality.”

Strong export performance for packaging machines

The packaging machinery sector, which has a strong export focus, is currently being slowed by adverse conditions and crises affecting production and the global economy. Based on the export volume achieved in the first half of the year, combined with a good order book, a small increase in production is still expected for 2022. According to the VDMA Food Processing and Packaging Machinery Division, the production volume for packaging machinery increased by 4.6 percent in 2021, to EUR 7 billion.

Exports by the approximately 300 manufacturers rose to EUR 5.922 billion in 2021 (previous year: EUR 5.673 billion), which is only slightly below the previous record volume achieved before the Covid-19 pandemic. The value of exports accounts for 84 percent of the production volume. The largest buyers of German packaging machines have traditionally been the EU countries, ahead of North America and Asia. In terms of buyer countries, the USA is well ahead of China, France and Poland.

Global foreign trade in packaging machinery totals almost EUR 22 billion, with the highly innovative German industry having occupied the top position (currently about 26 percent) ahead of Italy for a number of years.

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