AUSPACK looks at the 'human aspect' of packaging


Wednesday, 20 March, 2019

AUSPACK looks at the 'human aspect' of packaging

Consumers are impacting packaging and processing trends, so how can manufacturers ensure they meet their expectations? The impact of the ‘human aspect’ on the packaging industry will be discussed at the AUSPACK 2019 Business and Industry Conference from 26–27 March in Melbourne.

“In a world driven by technology, we’re actually seeing that people are an equal driver,” said Mark Dingley, Chairman of the Australian Packaging & Processing Machinery Association (APPMA), which is presenting the two-day inaugural conference during Packaging and Processing Week 2019. “The entire afternoon sessions of the ‘business growth’ stream on day one will be devoted to the impact that consumers are having on packaging.”

In her keynote ‘The Future Consumer — It’s Not Just About Millennials’, Shelley McMillan, food technologist and Associate Director of Consulting for Australia and New Zealand at Mintel, will look at the challenges, opportunities and paths for brands to widen their focus beyond Gen Y to the seniors cohort. McMillan will discuss this demographic’s diverse segments, looking at trends and prospects for brands in targeting seniors who don’t want to be labelled as ‘old’ but often have special needs.

This will be followed by a case study from Angeline Achariya, CEO, Monash Food Innovation Centre (FIC), an industry-shared model of innovation services to support Australian food and beverage industry growth. Achariya has more than 800 innovations launched across grocery and quick service restaurants in Asia and ANZ under her leadership. Titled ‘Keeping Up With The Customers — Customer Driven Innovation’, she will look at consumers’ high expectations and their assumption that brands will innovate. She will talk about whether manufacturers should concentrate on keeping up with their customers as opposed to their competitors, and discuss opportunities from escalating customer expectations using specific industry case studies on successful customer-driven innovation.

In the panel discussion ‘The Rise of The Mindful Consumer: Consumer Demands Driving Change in Packaging and Processing’, facilitated by Yaffa Publisher Lindy Hughson, attendees can hear insights from McMillan and Doug McNicholl, Manager – Supply Chain Sustainability Innovation at Meat & Livestock Australia.

The panel will discuss the consumer demands that are driving change in packaging and processing. For example, increasing numbers of consumers are asking questions during their buying process, such as “how do I reduce waste?”, “where does it come from?”, “is it safe?”, “how was it made?” and “is it kind to the environment?”. It’s important the packaging and processing industry takes these concerns into account.

Dingley said, “It’s not only understanding consumers that is important, having the right workforce strengthens businesses.”

This will be covered in the closing keynote ‘Strength Through Diversity’ by Dr Katie Spearritt, CEO of Diversity Partners, who will look at the impact of workforce diversity on a business’s success.

Research shows businesses with well-managed, diverse teams are innovative, with better decision-making and higher productivity. Spearritt will explore the importance of diversity and an inclusive work environment for organisations in the packaging and processing industry. She will share actions managers can take to break unconscious bias and stereotyped associations that inhibit diversity and innovation.

“With CEOs and boards in leading Australian companies increasingly recognising diversity and inclusion as mainstream business issues, this closing keynote will be of interest to large and small companies alike in the packaging and processing industry,” Dingley explained.

To register for the AUSPACK Business and Industry Conference, visit

Image credit: © Business

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