It’s December, which means another year is coming to a close. It’s been a privilege to serve as your chairman through such an exciting and transformative year for PMMI. Next month, Nick Wilson, president of Morrison Container Handling Solutions, will take over the Chairmanship for 2011, and I look forward to seeing his leadership plans in action, something I’m sure you’ll be reading about in this spot come January. For now, though, I want to take a look back at what PMMI has accomplished in the past 12 months and what I’ve learned through my participation.
Packaging. Processing. One Powerful Association.
To mirror the industries we all serve, PMMI continued implementing the expansion of our membership and the PACK EXPO shows, reaching beyond the packaging industry to include processing in 2010. The change was the result of insight and feedback from PACK EXPO attendees and PMMI members and exhibitors. Neither group views packaging and processing as separate and distinct manufacturing processes any longer — and neither could we.
… And One Powerful Show.
The Brand Zone.
The Processing Zone.
The Student Competition and The Amazing Packaging Race.
These are just a few of the programs that made their McCormick Place debut in 2010. With the expansion of PACK EXPO, which also included the introduction of The Confectionery Pavilion and the Food Safety Summit Resource Center, PACK EXPO drew crowds of attendees, who, for the first time, could source an entire production line on the floor of PACK EXPO, and the exhibitors (20 percent or more of the exhibitor population) who provided the processing solutions to make it so.
The innovation on display everywhere from the show floor to the conference sessions, brought in nearly 44,000 attendees, including record numbers of international delegations and machinery buyers from overseas. The addition of processing machinery to the show floor really did make PACK EXPO a powerful show, and the event was recently recognized by Trade Show Executive magazine as one of the year’s “Gold 100” trade shows. <link>
We couldn’t have accomplished so much without the support of a wide range of industry associations: The Grocery Manufacturers Association, the NPTA Alliance, the Institute of Packaging Professionals (IoPP), the National Confectioners Association, PAC — The Packaging Association, The Association of Independent Corrugated Converters (AICC) and the Reusable Packaging Association. I look forward to seeing the partnerships and collaborations that PMMI will foster moving forward, with active participation from all of our membership categories, making PMMI a trusted resource for food processors and their buyers.
The Convenient Campus: PMMI U
The field of mechatronics has been described as a “shining star” in today’s job market — and PMMI has led the charge in this synthesis of mechanical, computer, control and electronic engineering disciplines. In 2010, we built on our work by launching the Mechatronics Certificate Program, which provides tools manufacturers can use as they hire and/or promote within their workforce. As a skill and knowledge set, mechatronics assures that the automation driving modern manufacturing machinery can spur higher productivity and greater output.
The program has two certificates to date: Introduction to Mechanical Components and Introduction to Industrial Electricity. In addition to providing verification of skills and knowledge, the certificate tests help students and personnel find knowledge gaps.
And it’s all online! The PMMI U tools can be accessed wherever there is an Internet connection and whenever a student has time. As self-paced learning experiences, they support industry professionals, allowing them to address their learning needs from the office, on the road or at home.
Intelligence Designed for Action
While PMMI prides itself on providing business intelligence that is timely, relevant and diverse, this year we stepped up our efforts to make our studies more accessible and actionable, being more explicit about buyers’ needs. While reports like 2010’s profiles of the food and personal care industries have always provided strong data points, these studies also provide next steps that members can implement to respond to report findings.
As part of our goal of providing you the best business intelligence possible, we’re conducting a PMMI Member Census in 2010. Taking a few quick moments to fill out the forms that have been mailed to you will help ensure that we can consider the breadth of our membership when we report the findings of our industry-wide surveys.. If you haven’t had a chance to fill out our Member Census information, please do so by December 22. Those few moments you dedicate to the forms will increase the quality everything from the Shipments Study to Quickie Surveys.
What PMMI Has Taught Me
I’ve been active and involved in PMMI for a long time, but never as much as during the last year, and one thing I’ve seen, time and time again, is that the more I put in to PMMI, the more I get out. The closer I work with the organization, the more events I attend, the more of my peers I meet, the more I appreciate the vast knowledge and insight the packaging leaders in PMMI’s membership can bring to the table. The more active I am in PMMI, the better I understand our industry.
I truly appreciate the opportunities PMMI membership has presented — and I urge all PMMI members to join the action: attend a meeting, get involved in a committee, join the community and reap the full benefits of PMMI. Make it your New Year’s resolution to come to one of PMMI’s big events and build your network. PMMI members are experts in packaging and processing industries, and their insight is invaluable.
Thank you for the privilege of serving as chairman. It’s been an exciting year, and while I’m looking forward to spending time with friends and family in the weeks ahead, I’m also excited about what 2011 has in store. I, and all of PMMI, hope you have a happy holiday season, and look forward to working with you to build our businesses in a prosperous new year!