WPO World Packaging Organisation accomplished two packaging training programs in Asia. This time the countries chosen were Vietnam and China.
According to Pierre Pienaar, Vice President Education WPO and responsible for the programs, "the experience being involved in this five days residential training program (RTP) in Packaging Technology in the province of Tra Vinh, Vietnam, was a complete success”. 34 students from the industry attended the program in the facilities of Tra Vinh University. This initiative was led by the WPO President, Thomas Schneider, during a meeting with Mylan Group founder and CEO, My T Nguyen.
Although this recent training covered the entire spectrum of packaging technology, what drove the students were: how it is possible to improve packaging and reduce costs; what their packaging counterparts were doing in developed countries; and how they can improve packaging of foodstuffs to reduce wastage.
"WPO believes that those who have the knowledge have an obligation to help those in developing countries. In this event the standard was high and all students absorbed information like a sponge and simply wanted more. They were keen and eager to learn, which was evident in their final course related presentation”, reports Pierre Pienaar. As part of the training program, the group visited Mylan Group´s manufacturing plant for high barrier films used for electronics, food and pharmaceuticals.
Other successful packaging training program was held in China with the support of AIP (Australian Institute of Packaging) and CEPI (China National Export Commodities Packaging Research Institute), both WPO members. In this occasion, there were 54 attendees, made up from industry as well as academia (lecturers), from various universities in China involved in Packaging Design or Packaging Graphics. The group used the facilities of a Sechuan University, in Chengdu.
"More than ever it was evident that there is a need, as well as a desire, for many across the globe to learn more in the science and technology of packaging. It was an exciting packaging training week in Chengdu. The students were eager to learn and we fortunately had access to a professional Chinese / English translator, which made lecturing so much easier”, comments Pienaar.
Although this program covered the entire spectrum of packaging technology, the students were more interested in learning about packaging materials, especially laminates. As part of the program, the group visited a state of the art glass manufacturing company and an up-to-date board printing facilities.
Similar training programs, undertaken this year by the WPO, were in Indonesia, Nigeria, Kenya and Iran; in the beginning of October there was also one held in Italy. WPO aim with these programs is to get more people, especially in developing countries, educated in Packaging Technology. "It continues to be a long road but a hugely rewarding one”, states Thomas Schneider, WPO President.