The year 2020 has certainly been one for the record books. Very few saw the pandemic-related devastating and disruptive times coming. When the storm hit, the food industry experienced some tough times but proved it was up to the challenge of feeding the nation.
A great example of the industry working together is last month’s PACK EXPO Connects, the first-ever virtual edition of PACK EXPO. As someone who has attended nearly every PACK EXPO for the past 30 years, the word that comes to mind is impressive. The show featured more than 700 exhibitors and close to 18,000 visitors.
I would be remiss if I didn’t mention another shift in 2020—the powerful women in our industry who starred at PACK EXPO Connects. Kim Houchens, director of the customer packaging experience at Amazon, shared insights into the company’s remarkable use of automation to efficiently deliver products to consumers. In today’s rapidly growing e-commerce era, Amazon is also employing the latest technology to create right-size packaging that supports sustainability.
Also at the virtual show, PMMI’s Packaging and Processing Women’s Leadership Network featured an interview with Bumble Bee Seafood’s CEO Jan Tharp, who spoke about leadership in times of adversity and the importance of communications and transparency in running a successful business.
As the pandemic continues, so does the resiliency of the food industry to embrace so many lessons learned in the early stages to keep its workers safe and the supply chain intact during the current round of high transmission rates. The pandemic has changed the world, but sheer determination and employing technology to its full benefit will continue to allow the food industry to prevail.
Access to PACK EXPO Connects will be available through March 2021. Learn more about the show beginning on page 9 in this issue or visit packexpoconnects.com.
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