With less than a month until the doors open, PACK EXPO Las Vegas 2011 (September 26-28; Las Vegas Convention Center) is still growing and is poised to break all show records, according to show owner and producer PMMI.
PACK EXPO will occupy more than 650,000 net square feet, with some 1,600 exhibitors. The show will be larger than both the 2009 show and the record-breaking 2007 event.
"Since space sales opened, PMMI has expanded the show floor several times to accommodate demands for exhibit space. What's atypical about the growth is the degree of expansion - 20 percent or more increases over last fall's predictions for space and exhibitors, and 550 new exhibitors! 2011 will be the largest PACK EXPO Las Vegas show to date," says Charles D. Yuska, President/CEO, PMMI
One reason for the increases, Yuska says, is the "Customer-Centric" approach PMMI has taken to promoting and marketing PACK EXPO Las Vegas 2011.
"Our goal is to give attendees a PACK EXPO experience that allows them to take the seed of a branding idea, and find sources for every step along the way from the drawing board, to production, to the store shelves," Yuska says.
Attendance on the Increase
Pre-registration for the 2011 show is outpacing 2009 by 25 percent year-to-date, with total registration easily exceeding 25,000 attendees. International attendance is also on the increase, reinforcing the importance of global strategies for suppliers and attendees.
"The U.S. Department of Commerce's (DOC) International Buyer Program has confirmed 28 escorted buyer delegations will be in attendance. These delegations typically include 15-25 pre-screened, serious buyers from a number of companies within a given country accompanied by a DOC representative who can facilitate meetings with exhibitors," Yuska says.
More than 25 countries are represented by these delegations, including Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, Mexico, Canada, China, Bulgaria, Kazakhstan, Tunisia, Thailand, but the delegations only account for a portion of the 50 percent increase in international buyers at PACK EXPO. PMMI also reports its efforts abroad have resulted in promised visits from trade groups from Mexico, China and Russia.
International visitors can get the most from their trip to PACK EXPO by visiting the International Business Center (IBC) (Room S224), the hub for international business at PACK EXPO. Its valuable resources include connections with experienced trade specialists who can provide export counseling, matchmaking assistance, and market research to help U.S. companies expand business globally.
Creating the Vision
"Since 1956, the PACK EXPO shows have mirrored the industries they serve, and today's consumer goods companies - our exhibitors' customers - see production as a single, continuous function," Yuska adds.
New features and participation from an array of industry partners are propelling this vision:
The Association for Automatic Identification and Mobility (AIM) will hold AIM Expo, a conference and trade show highlighting issues and trends in bar codes, radio frequency identification (RFID) and enterprise mobile computing at the Las Vegas Hilton from Sept. 26-28. Full conference registration includes access to all AIM Expo conference sessions, plus the AIM Expo and PACK EXPO Las Vegas exhibit halls.
Converting & Package Printing EXPO (CPP EXPO) will co-locate with PACK EXPO Las Vegas, occupying about 25,000 net square feet of space in the Lower South Hall of the Las Vegas Convention Center. There, attendees will find the latest in printing, coating, slitting and other modern finishing processes. CPP EXPO will also provide programming for the Conference at PACK EXPO.
The International Bottled Water Association's (IBWA) Annual Business Conference will be held at the MGM Hotel Sept. 26-30, with education sessions Sept. 27-29, and tabletop exhibits the afternoon of Sept. 28. IBWA registrants will receive complimentary registration to the PACK EXPO Las Vegas exhibits. Shuttle buses will run between the MGM Grand and the Las Vegas Convention Center.
The Reusable Packaging Association (RPA) will sponsor the Reusable Packaging Pavilion at PACK EXPO Las Vegas. Located on the lower level of the South Hall, attendees will find solutions to enhance operations sustainability such as reusable pallets, hand-held containers, bulk containers, dunnage, technology and other services. RPA also plans sustainability track sessions for the Conference at PACK EXPO and a Sept. 26 networking reception for members and invited guests.
Leading subject matter experts at the Food Safety Summit Resource Center (Booth 6635) will provide processors and manufacturers opportunity to learn about the latest in food safety issues and solutions. The Food Safety Summit Resource Center is sponsored by BNP Media.
The National Confectioners Association (NCA) will sponsor The Confectionery Pavilion, 15,000 net square feet of innovations to answer the processing and packaging challenges of candy manufacturers. Among the solutions will be technologies to enhance equipment flexibility, reduce changeover time, maximize consumer convenience and guarantee freshness.
The Candy Bar, a special industry-focused lounge, will be located within The Confectionery Pavilion and include an educational "Ask the Expert" feature where attendees can seek advice from industry experts on confectionery-related challenges in packaging and processing. A special reception in The Candy Bar on Monday, Sept. 26, at 3:30 pm will offer additional networking opportunities.
The Snack Food Association (SFA) has endorsed The Baking and Snack Break (Booth 6243), a dedicated lounge for baking and snack processionals, and will staff its "Ask the Expert" feature. Designed for networking, attendees will find The Baking and Snack Break a spot where they can connect quickly and efficiently with peers, suppliers and experts well-versed in the same challenges they face every day. Its networking reception will take place on Monday, Sept. 26. The Baking and Snack Break's sponsors are BluePrint Automation, Kliklok-Woodman and Yamato Corporation.
New to PACK EXPO this year, the Pharmaceutical Pavilion will spotlight suppliers who can address the specific challenges pharmaceutical manufacturers face. The Rx Lounge, which will host a reception Monday, Sept. 26, will be a hub for networking and seeking out solutions from experts in this highly-specialized field.
"Most recently, we've been very pleased to accept the Midwest Food Processors Association's (MWFPA) and the American Meat Institute's (AMI) the support and endorsement of PACK EXPO Las Vegas 2011. That makes nearly a dozen industry-leading organizations getting behind this show, and the strength of these partnerships is paying off for attendees and exhibitors," Yuska says.
The customer-centric approach applies to the Conference at PACK EXPO as well as the exposition halls, to address the needs of attendees better than ever, Yuska notes.
The Conference at PACK EXPO runs concurrently with the trade show, and features content developed by five leading industry organizations: Alliance for Innovation & Operational Excellence (AIOE), Converting & Package Printing (CPP) EXPO, Institute of Packaging Professionals (IoPP), International Society of Beverage Technologists (ISBT) and Reusable Packaging Association (RPA).
"Creating a conference program that speaks to attendees' specialties and knowledge needs was critical, and it's worked out very well - one of the strongest we've ever offered," Yuska says. "The partner organizations and their members played a large part in creating that value."
Conference topics include sustainability, food safety and the Food Safety Modernization Act, serialization and project management, and many of the presenters are from well-known consumer goods companies, including the following:
• Bush Brothers & Co.
• ConAgra Foods
• Del Monte Foods
• Estee Lauder Cosmetics Ltd.
• Genentech, Inc.
• General Mills
• Kellogg Company
• Land O'Lakes, Inc.
• Ocean Spray Cranberries, Inc.
• Pfizer Global Manufacturing
• Procter & Gamble
• Shire Pharmaceuticals
• Smithfield Foods
Among the Fastest Growing U.S. Trade Shows
PACK EXPO Las Vegas is held in odd-numbered years, alternating with PMMI's PACK EXPO International in Chicago on the even-numbered years.
The show, launched as PACK EXPO West in 1995, began with 200,845 net square feet, and attracted 9,157 buyers.
"In just eight show cycles - 16 years - PACK EXPO Las Vegas has tripled in size. It's one of the fastest growing trade shows in the United States," Yuska says. "PMMI has fostered this growth by anticipating and responding to the needs of our exhibitors and their customers. To this day, PACK EXPO Las Vegas is a dynamic, must-attend event for professionals whose roles are related to packaging and processing."