This year, ECMA (European association of cardboard manufacturers) and Pro Carton (European cardboard and paperboard manufacturers’ umbrella organization) joined forces and organized the first joint annual conference in Sorrento.

The event registered the highest number of participants ever: more than 230 converter, paperboard producers, suppliers and brand owners and representatives of the distribution met up to discuss the hot topics of the sector 17th to 20th September last.

And if Antonio D’Amato (Chairman/CEO SEDA Group) had the task of doing the honors, other successful Italian figures paid tribute to national expertise during the encounter, notably the economist Luca Paolazzi, the designer and businessman Paolo Pininfarina, the producer Paolo Barilla.

What’s new?
The fact is that the packaging is changing in the digital age. To win the challenges, sometimes it can be useful to take a break and be inspired by the unusual; invited to the congress, the motivational speaker Casper Berry  therefore proposed a different view on the mechanisms that drive everything we do. In an interactive presentation, he examined the risks and decision-making processes in poker, in business and in life.
Other talks though outlined the boundaries of the complexity the cardboard processing industry is facing, “before it is too late”: the global trends in the food market, the vision of a more sustainable world where one is called upon to sell and produce more with less, the consequences of the presence and operating of “Big Pharma”. And again, the potential of the packaging in multichannel retail, the information to be transmitted and collect via the web, the established presence of digital native consumers.
Prizes and awards. The conference in Sorrento set the stage  for the  winners of the Pro Carton ECMA Awards, which each year spotlights the most innovatory cardboard packaging solutions produced by the industry. Also announced the launch of the Pro Carton Young Designers Award reserved for students.
(In this issue we merely offer a speedy overview of the best cardboard packs, see for further details).

It was the dynamism of the solution which won the Fernanda Brandao perfume pack the Carton of the Year award; made by Carl Edelmann GmbH using  Stora Enso material.

The award for sustainability went to an innovative advent calendar made by Mayr-Melnhof Packaging Austria using Stora Enso board.

The top creativity award for the “smartest” design went to the Artelac dispenser-display produced by Mayr-Melnhof; material by Iggesund Paperboard.