Attendees spoke, and PMMI listened. The organization, which owns and organizes Pack Expo, made substantial changes to the education program at the coming Pack Expo Las Vegas to be held Sept. 23-25 at the Las Vegas Convention Center.

“We build Pack Expo shows around the attendees — they’re our customers, and they’re our exhibitor’s customers,” said Jim Pittas, PMMI’s vice-­president, trade shows. “The whole customer-centric approach to Pack Expo is based on meeting their needs, and among those needs are learning opportunities that fit their agendas.”

An in-depth study of Pack Expo attendees, Voice of Attendees (VOA), indicated that they value education at the show, when presented in the right way. The study revealed a need for PMMI not only to rethink topics but also the location fee. In addition, PMMI, the Association for Packaging and Processing Technologies, is expanding the number of learning centers on the show floor and including industry leaders in its efforts.

A variety of educational spots will be set up on the show floor, including the Innovation Stage, the Center for Trends & Technology (CTT) and the Reusables Learning Center. The Innovation Stage will feature nonstop learning opportunities in 27 half-hour segments delivered by industry experts and covering topics and technologies for today’s industry needs.

CTT is designed to show attendees how to improve production through innovation. Suppliers such as Rockwell, Cisco, Microsoft and Motorola will be leading the education sessions, and attendees will see technology on display and learn how it works with other equipment. The Reusable Packaging Association will teach attendees at the Reusable Learning Center how to gain long-term cost saving benefits from eco-friendly packaging.

Attendees also can take advantage of in-booth education sessions, where exhibitor expertise will be front and center.

Pack Expo has booked more than 1,600 exhibitors, and it will offer special show features to help baking and snack processors find the solutions they need. For example, the Baking-Snack Break lounge will once again be hosted by the Snack Food Association and will provide a dedicated area where professionals can network with peers, meet with suppliers and engage experts for technical advice about packaging- and processing-related challenges.

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