Renewed Focus on Industry Technical Issues
Corrugated packaging industry hot topics ebb and flow over the years like the tide. Consumer, retailer or NGO gravitational pull generates tidal forces that cause certain topics to be at the forefront over others. Often, the same topics resurface over time. That’s true right now as the industry has a renewed focus on many technical issues.
Issues like compostability, recovery, sustainability, alternative coatings and box design factors are either pushing their way to or are firmly rooted at the top which means activities are ramping up for Fibre Box Association’s (FBA) Technical Department.
FBA will welcome a new manager of technical services on November 1, 2021. Chase Kammerer will join Mary Alice Drain, director of technical services. Chase will manage the FBA standing technical committees (Technical, Environmental, and Health & Safety) by administering agendas, minutes, and other meeting concerns. He’ll also work with the committees to ensure that the technical publications in our FBA store are current.
Beginning late last year, the committees meet virtually every six to eight weeks instead of twice a year in person. The boosted schedule has increased each of the committee’s capability to stay better connected and advanced their project slate. The committees have been tackling more of their goals and it will be very beneficial to have another technical staff member to facilitate the additional workload.
The Technical Committee has already completed two research projects in 2019 and 2020 on environmental factors and box design. A 2021 project funded by the International Corrugated Packaging Foundation (ICPF) on score profiles and their effect on BCT, has just begun. In addition, ICPF has approved a 2022 project related to pallet overhang. Not surprisingly, the research projects have also sparked renewed interest from university research labs on additional corrugated packaging research ideas.
Chase will also work with Mary Alice to respond to requests for information and industry reference materials; manage FBA’s technical, environmental, and health & safety information, in print and on our website; and proactively participate in development of technical standards, regulations, and test methods impacting corrugated products.
Our industry prides itself on the positive messages that we can share about our recovery rates, sustainability, compostability, alternative coatings, etc. With the help of FBA’s Technical department, we’ll ensure that we continue to provide our members with new data and research to continue that messaging far into the future. Or, at least until the next hot topic tide comes in.