Article – 23. Aug 2021
ANNOUNCED REVOLUTIONS
SOMETIMES LOSE THEIR "R"
Comment by Walter Woitsch, Managing Director Syngroup

FACHPACK 2021 in Nuremberg is the first major meeting of the European packaging industry in two years. “We make the future” is the motto of this year’s edition of the European trade fair for packaging, packaging machinery and packaging design. In the run-up to the event, industry representatives evaluated current trends. The “FACHPACK Trend Radar 2021” summarises the results of the survey. It shows which current trends are rated as attractive by the industry and which are considered to have the greatest potential for change in the next three to five years.

Syngroup is Austria’s leading globally active process consultancy for the manufacturing industry. Since our foundation in 1995, we have been closely associated with the packaging sector. We know the market and the players from a multitude of successfully implemented projects with companies of all sizes in Europe and the BRIC countries, using all important raw materials and production technologies.

Due to our background and focus of services, we mainly look at the packaging industry through an operational lens, with a focus on production and logistics technologies. It seems both striking and surprising that no or hardly any short- or medium-term trends can be derived from the current Trendradar with regard to production technologies.

HYPOTHESIS 1: INDUSTRY 4.0 – REVOLUTION CANCELLED

The disruptions in all business areas that were loudly announced as a result of the digital transformation through Industry 4.0 have failed to emerge in the productive areas. The revolution has apparently lost its “R” in favour of a dynamic yet continuous technological development.

HYPOTHESIS 2: CIRCULAR ECONOMY - THE UNDERESTIMATED MEGATREND

The development of a circular economy is also a megatrend for the packaging industry and will have significant consequences for operations. This fact is still given far too little consideration by those involved or affected. We assume that the trend towards the “circular economy” will hit the industry at its very roots, due to changing consumer behaviour and stricter legal regulations – with direct consequences for production.

HYPOTHESIS 3 - DATA AND NETWORKING CREATE ADDED VALUE

The selective use of new, data-supported technologies in manufacturing and increased networking across all participants in the value chain of the packaging industry are already an experianced reality today. Syngroup shares the view of the majority of respondents in the industry that this is a necessary, evolutionary development and cannot be seen as a “trend”.

CONCLUSION

Topics such as the circular economy, e-commerce or digitalisation are also influencing and changing working conditions in the packaging industry, sustainably and at high speed. They are a challenge and at the same time offer potential for redesign in many operational areas and in fact, across the entire supply chain. It is important to take the right steps in a timely and consistent manner.

For more information and to discuss your specific questions and requirements, Walter Woitsch is gladly at your disposal. Please contact him: Walter Woitsch, walter.woitsch@syn-group.com

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