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Stadion Mässan in Malmö was the venue for the sixth Top Packaging Summit by Packbridge on 19 and 20 September. Top Packaging Summit by Packbridge is a conference that brings together the entire packaging value chain and helps put Skåne on the map. It is one of Europe’s largest packaging conferences, with participants and delegations from countries such as Germany, Spain and France as well as the Nordic countries. This year, nearly 250 people were present for two days to look at problems and opportunities for the packaging industry value chain. In addition, there were about 40 exhibitors in the hall.

“Over six years we have built up something that is unique for an industry which is one of the largest in the world, as well as for its customers, and we have undoubtedly succeeded in putting Skåne on the global map. We don’t just get visitors from Europe – the word has spread globally and we have even had speakers from California”, says Johan Mårtensson, CEO of Packbridge.

The Top Packaging Summit by Packbridge concept has been developed gradually. This year saw the première of Packbridge Journey, which meant that the conference was divided into a keynote programme with presentations given on four stages to reflect developments in materials, machines, products and the circular economy.

The circular economy is hugely important for the packaging industry which is often criticised when it comes to the environment. In addition to a number of presentations on the subject, the Ellen MacArthur Foundation appeared on the main stage to clarify what the concept of circular economy actually means. This is an organisation that carries a great deal of weight globally.

The Packbridge network is growing rapidly and more people want to attend the conference every year, both as speakers and visitors. This year there was strong participation by brand owners, with representatives from Absolut, Orkla, Danish Coop and Axfood all appearing on stage.

“We see clearly that Top Packaging Summit by Packbridge is becoming more important all the time”, says Johan Mårtensson. This year, the Resilient Regions cluster was also invited to talk about developing sustainable cities, an area where there is a clear link between efficient logistics and optimal packaging solutions.

Also in the news this year was the final of the start-up competition The Packbridge Challenge. This contest was launched in the spring with a semi-final heat at the Palladium in Malmö, with about 40 start-up companies and entrepreneurs participating. Ten of these went on to the final, among them being the Finnish company Koepala Packaging which eventually took home the prize money of SEK 50,000.

The Packbridge Challenge will be back next year and we are already looking for both jury members and sponsors. We can guarantee that anyone getting involved will be faced with an interesting challenge.

“Needless to say, Top Packaging Summit by Packbridge will be back in Skåne again in September next year”, says Johan Mårtensson.