Use to reuse

Pier Paolo Ponchia, founder and manager of Packaging Première, meeting space dedicated to luxury packaging, showcases the event’s strengths and reveals what’s new in the 2023 edition.

You launched Packaging Première in 2017 at an already complicated time for traditional trade fairs. A challenging decision…

We were already organising trade fairs in other sectors, related to printing and the promotional sector, and we realised that Italian packaging companies were leaders in Europe but there was no exhibition dedicated to their sector in Italy. The problem also concerned the many companies in the world of luxury based in Milan and beyond, which needed high-quality packaging.

So we thought of bringing supply and demand together “at home” and it received a warm response straightway, in particular from manufacturers of boxes, bags, and in general companies specialising in printing and the supply and finishing of paper. The predominant presence of which somewhat distinguished Packaging Première: at PCD Paris the opposite happened, with the focus on perfumery and cosmetics.

How did the following editions go?

The event immediately attracted high-calibre companies and visitors. Then, just before Covid, we entered into a partnership with Easyfairs, which organises PCD Paris, and we agreed to launch the Parisian edition of Packaging Première and the Milan edition of PCD. Packaging Première has benefited from PCD Paris with regard to the primary packaging sector, in particular for the world of cosmetics, and for its part has introduced secondary packaging to PCD Paris: an exchange of know-how and expertise that has done well at both events. Unexpected sectors also became involved: some of the most prestigious paper mills taking part, for example, also attracted operators from the furniture world, and luxury in general, who did not come to the fair in search of packaging, but the very best paper for prestigious catalogues or unique invitation and communication cards.

What has changed with the pandemic?

The end of the pandemic left us longing to come together, especially with trade fairs such as Packaging Première, where the product is a feast for the eyes and fingers. On the other hand, we have also kept the technology we got used to with Covid: for example, we have introduced smart badges whose readers let visitors share information with exhibitors without having to meet: this virtual exchange of information can continue throughout the year, leading to further interactions.

Do you plan on keeping the same formula in 2023?

Yes, but with a few tweaks. We are definitely going to welcome back Avant-Garde, the contest that promotes innovation in packaging: a jury of experts will select the best projects from the exhibiting companies taking part that will be exhibited and showcased in a special area. We are also going to repeat the spin-off of Pentawards, the most important packaging design award in the world, with internationally renowned designers taking part; the conference program will touch on the most important issues. And the event “is going to be even bigger”: Packaging Première and PCD Milan will be hosted in two separate pavilions. Spaces are already running out.

Do you see trends that affect the packaging world in general?

A common feature is the focus on sustainability, especially regarding the carbon footprint, the impact on the environment throughout the packaging production process, up to its disposal.

In many sectors, the aim is to reduce materials – by reducing thicknesses or quantities – and to reuse: a strong commitment, which can make the end user more responsible. New ways to reuse packaging returned or waste products such as office paper or waste from customer production are being experimented with. A cutting-edge paper mill like Favini makes eco paper with citrus fruit, coconut, and dried  fruit waste… It is a very creative moment, new materials and technologies are rapidly changing the world of luxury.

Theme developed by TouchSize - Premium WordPress Themes and Websites