News | July 30, 2008

Pack Expo International Goes Green

Arlington, VA - With approximately half of U.S. consumers considering at least one sustainability factor in selecting packaged goods items or stores to shop (Source: Information Resources, Inc.), sustainability has gone from just being a buzzword in the packaging industry to an essential part of today's corporate strategy.

Professionals needing guidance on how to apply sustainable packaging initiatives to their businesses need to look no further than PACK EXPO International 2008, Nov. 9–13 at Chicago's McCormick Place.

Show attendees will find an array of sustainability-oriented innovations among the show's 2,000+ exhibitors. The featured technologies, ranging from bioplastics, polylactic acid (PLA) films and other sustainable packaging materials to energy-efficient machinery and lean production solutions, will address several key issues including source reduction, minimization of greenhouse gas emissions and waste and rising levels of recycling and recycled content.

Introducing PACK EXPO Green
To help attendees easily identify exhibitors highlighting sustainable solutions, PMMI is introducing PACK EXPO Green. Special icons will be used to flag listings on, in the compact Pocket Guide Directory available on site at PACK EXPO and in participating exhibitors' booths.

For attendees using My PACK EXPO™ to pre-plan their trip, a new search function will reveal exhibiting companies that offer sustainable and/or environmentally-friendly technologies. Special booth signage will make it simple to find the exhibitors on site.

Think Green The sustainability theme will also carry over to the Conference at PACK EXPO (Nov. 10–12). A sustainability track will be featured as part of each day's program schedule, exposing attendees to various dimensions of sustainability including conservation, lightweighting, plant operations and insight from the brand owner perspective.

Each of the conference's keynote sessions will also address sustainability — beginning with a special address by Amy Zettlemoyer-Lazar, Packaging Director of Sam's Club and Co-Manager of the Wal-Mart Sustainability Value Network:

  • Sunday, Nov. 9, 1:00 pm: In a standalone session, "Keeping Score: How Wal-Mart and its Suppliers Continue to Advance Packaging Change, Innovation and Sustainability," Zettlemoyer-Lazar will provide an update on the progress of the Wal-Mart sustainability scorecard and the next steps in its evolution. Additionally, Wal-Mart will staff a Wal-Mart Sustainability Scorecard Information Center during the run of the show.
  • Monday, November 10, 10:10 am: Betsy Cohen, vice president of sustainability at Nestlé, will present "More Safety vs. Less Material? Where Does Packaging Go?," addressing the challenges, conflicts and competing values packaging professionals must balance every day.
  • Tuesday, Nov. 11, 10:10 am: Trevor Cusworth, director, Deloitte Consulting LLP, will deliver Tuesday's keynote speech. His presentation on "Sustainability in Manufacturing: From Boardroom to Break Room" will use real-life case studies to highlight and demonstrate sustainable operations practices and will identify immediate actions that can improve the sustainability of manufacturing operations as well as longer-term actions such as designing and installing new lines and equipment.
  • Wednesday, Nov. 12, 10:10 am: Glenn A. Wright, commercial vice president, North American Basic Plastics at The Dow Chemical Company, will lead the conference's final keynote session. Wright's speech, "Packaging is Part of the Solution, Not the Problem," will explore the positive environmental, social and economic impacts of packaging and highlight real benefits that often go unnoticed. Consumer and industry data featured in this session will prove how packaging contributes to sustainability and that, when accompanied by education and industry collaboration, will not only benefit the environment, but strengthen brand promise as well.

"We're very pleased to offer PACK EXPO International attendees opportunities to discover how they can improve their operations to achieve sustainability goals," says Charles D. Yuska, president and CEO of PMMI. "PMMI is committed to adding value to its events by focusing on issues that are at the forefront of our industry. Sustainability is top of mind with packaging professionals around the globe, and we felt it was essential to make the topic an integral part of PACK EXPO International 2008."

Attendees can register for keynote sessions along with other conference sessions at

PMMI: Green is Good
To complement all of the sustainable solutions being discussed on the show floor and in conference sessions, PMMI is taking steps towards making PACK EXPO one of the greenest trade shows in the industry. Among the many activities aimed at reducing energy and waste:

  • Free METRA commuter rail passes for attendees and exhibitors
  • Replacing detailed printed show directories with the more compact Pocket Guide Directory
  • Providing collection bins for paper waste
  • Recycling badge holders
  • Using "Green Seal" approved cleaning products and restroom supplies made from 100 percent post-consumer waste.
  • Recycled pallet program
  • Power-down policy for non-show hours

"As the organizer of one of the world's largest trade shows, we feel it's important to take a proactive role when it comes to protecting the environment," says Yuska. "By working with our exhibitors, we'll be able to offer a range of voluntary programs that both exhibitors and attendees can participate in — and feel good about."

PACK EXPO International 2008 registration is available online at, where attendees can also register for the entire Conference at PACK EXPO program. Show registration is $30 and conference sessions are $55 each through Oct. 21, 2008. After Oct. 21 (including on site), PACK EXPO registration increases to $60 and conference sessions to $75 each.

Registration for the exhibits at PACK EXPO International 2008 is required in order to register for conference program sessions.

For more information, contact PMMI's Show Department: 703.243.8555 or