An end to the waiting at last! After a two-year break and the pandemic-related cancellation and postponement of many trade fairs and events, the European packaging industry is meeting again in its scheduled sequence for an in-person event at the Exhibition Centre Nuremberg: Fachpack, the European trade fair for packaging, processes and technology. Thus, Fachpack is the first of many events to follow in the NürnbergMesse events calendar. Under the banner of “Environmentally compatible packaging”, 782 exhibitors from 34 countries will be in attendance from 28 to 30 September, presenting their innovative products and solutions in seven exhibition halls. Trade visitors from the consumer and industrial goods industry are cordially invited to take part in the live event or its digital extension, myFachpack.
“We are heralding the re-launch of events at the Nuremberg exhibition venue with Fachpack,” observes Heike Slotta, Executive Director, NürnbergMesse. “We are extremely pleased to be able to offer the packaging sector its favourite in-person meeting place at the Exhibition Centre once again. With our two-track concept between Fachpack and its digital extension myFachpack, we are able to provide the best of two worlds, on-site and online. That will make the participation process even more efficient for our exhibition visitors.” Phillip Blass, the new Director Fachpack at NürnbergMesse, adds: “Although Fachpack is a little smaller this year, the industry is still represented with its full range of products and services, including at an international level. Forty percent of the exhibitors will travel from outside Germany. Fachpack offers a top-level programme with a wealth of new products and innovations which it has been impossible to present at trade fairs for such a long time.”
PACKBOX, TECHBOX and INNOVATIONBOX lecture forums
Especially popular with the public are the two forums PACKBOX (Hall 7) and TECHBOX (Hall 3C), which will be complemented this year by the new exhibitor forum INNOVATIONBOX (Hall 4). These will provide the venue for product presentations by prominent experts and discussion rounds on each day of the event. PACKBOX will focus on a different key theme each day: “Consumer & trade” (28.9.21), “Sustainability & innovation” (29.9.21) and “Design & material” (30.9.21). The key themes for TECHBOX are “Resources & Sustainability” (28.9.21), “Innovation & Efficiency” (29.9.21) and “Digitization & Transformation” (30.9.21). The full programme for all three forums is available online at Fachpack.de/programme.
Special show on sustainable packaging in Hall 7
A sustainable lifestyle is important for an increasing number of consumers. The product is not the only important element in this regard – it also covers the packaging and its design. The special show in Hall 7 curated by bayern design for Fachpack 2021 draws on 18 exhibits to illustrate future-oriented and creative design solutions from all parts of the globe. These range from material experiments, in which the focus is on developing new materials, to prototyping and the conceptual development of new packaging solutions, and the implementation of sustainable packaging on the market.
Awards: Spotlight on the best
At Fachpack 2021 the stage will once again be set for the presentation of the German Packaging Award, Europe’s top showcase for all aspects of packaging. The award is presented on the first day of the trade fair by theDeutsches Verpackungsinstitut (German Packaging Institute, dvi) in ten categories. And following a successful launch in 2019, the Sustainability Awards will once again be presented during the PACKBOX forum on the second day of the trade fair. These awards are given by the British industry magazine Packaging Europe.
myFachpack: digital extension to the in-person trade fair
New this year is myFachpack, the digital extension to Fachpack for all aspects of “matchmaking” and knowledge sharing, which extends the in-person trade fair into the virtual world. Even before the trade fair begins, this new tool provides opportunities to network, enabling participants to prepare their visit in detail: to search for products, exhibitors and participants both on-site and digitally, for example. The lecture forum programme will also be streamed live during the trade fair, and will remain accessible after the event. myFachpack can be used from a desktop or mobile app.
Slight decline in market for packaging in 2020
In 2020, Germany’s packaging manufacturers recorded a slight decline in both production and revenue. According to information from the Gemeinschaftsausschuss Deutscher Verpackungshersteller (Joint Committee of German Packaging Producers, GADV), about 19 million tonnes of packaging materials were manufactured in 2020, which equates to a decline of 0.7 percent. Production value also declined by 2.5 percent, to approximately EUR 32 billion in 2020. As in previous years, plastic packaging accounted for the largest share of production value at about 45 percent, while paper and cardboard represented the largest share by volume of packaging materials, at about 47 percent.
For production, the picture differs depending on the packaging material, with glass packaging recording growth of 0.9 percent. This contrasted with a decline in production of packaging using aluminium (down 3.4 percent), steel (down 5.7 percent) and plastic (down 2.0 percent). The result for paper and cardboard packaging remained stable year on year.
Growth in demand for food processing and packaging machines
Last year, the Covid-19 pandemic put an end to a ten-year growth period for the food processing and packaging machine sector. But despite the continued pandemic, the approximately 600 manufacturers once again recorded a substantial increase in demand in 2021. According to information from the VDMA Food Processing and Packaging Machinery Division, order volumes in the first six months of 2021 grew by 28 percent compared to the previous year, while domestic and international orders increased by 35 and 26 percent respectively. By the end of June 2021, exports increased by almost 5 percent to EUR 4.1 billion.
The value of production decreased by 9 percent to EUR 13.9 billion in the previous year; the decline in this area was thus less than in other branches of the mechanical engineering industry. Exports in 2020 declined by almost 7 percent to EUR 8.6 billion, although the leading position on the world market was still maintained with a share of 21 percent. The area of packaging machines, which experienced a slightly smaller export decline in percentage terms, accounted for a production value of EUR 6.7 billion, compared to EUR 7.3 billion in the previous year.
Safe personal networking thanks to incidence-independent hygiene concept
NürnbergMesse has been working with the Bavarian regional government and Bavarian trade fair companies to develop a workable hygiene plan to allow FachPack to be visited safely. It is based on the incidence-independent framework hygiene concept for trade fairs and exhibitions currently in force in Bavaria. Specific measures to protect trade fair participants include regular air exchange and an ultra-modern ventilation concept, social distancing by means of space planning and capacity management, mask mandates indoors, on-site hygiene measures, and digital registration and access systems with associated contact tracing options. Another essential cornerstone is the “3G rule”, which restricts entry to visitors who are vaccinated, have recovered from an infection, or have returned a negative test result.