Present: B Miyares (President), A Manly (Treasurer), V Volek, I Volkova, J Kreuter, P Nordberg, T Lissalo, B Wallteg, L Benzi, A Arikan (signed attendance sheet available).

10 members present, as this was not sufficient for a quorum the proceedings were classified as informal by the President.

  1. Opening Remarks by the President

He welcomed everyone to the meeting and thanked IPACK-IMA for laying on the facilities.

The President was concerned about the amount of time allocated to members for their presentations during this show. He said 10-15 minutes was simply not sufficient to cover the topics properly and also the time slots allocated were not kept to, so would-be attendees would not get the opportunity to hear what they wanted. He felt representations needed to be made to ALL organisers to be realistic about presentation lengths, particularly as these had taken a long time to prepare and some people, including himself, had travelled a long way to give them! There was general agreement with the President’s views.

Those present then gave a ‘round the table’ brief introduction of themselves at the President’s request.

  1. Apologies

It was noted that several apologies had been received by the Secretary General prior to the meeting, citing prior commitments or cost of travel.

  1. Update on IPPO Website

The President gave an update on the changes and improvements to the website:

-Management of the website has now been transferred from Indonesia to USA
-Most issues identified at the last meeting have been fixed
-Concerns over gaps in information, particularly member profiles. Often poorly edited!
(NB PROFILES CAN BE SELF-EDITED BY THE MEMBER)
-Constitution on the website is out of date and issues over who qualifies as a member still exist.

As a result the President would like a small committee to be formed (2 people) to review and update the Constitution. L Benzi said Carlos dos Silva Campos had already done this work she believed but it had never been presented or formally approved. She would contact Carlos to ask him about it as it was quite some time ago. (Action LB)

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There followed a general discussion regarding membership criteria. The President asked whether the word ‘Press’ in the IPPO title was still relevant as we now accepted PR specialists who are termed ‘communications specialists’ and are certainly not pure journalists.

V Volek said most small publishing companies, including his own, now work across all types of media, not just journalism in the traditional sense. So lines are already blurred.

B Wallteg asked if changing the name would solve the ‘problem’ if it is regarded as one.

J Kreuter remarked that role of trade journalists had changed enormously over his time in the business (35 years) and journalists often help clients with PR issues these days.

L Benzi suggested retaining the name but adding a suitable ‘tag line’ might be one solution.

President said he felt membership should be open to anyone who writes about or for the Packaging sector. However certain PR specialists (some names mentioned) he deemed inappropriate. The primary purpose should still be to consider the needs of the reader not the subject and some PR specialists still put the subject first and did not produce balanced work.

B Wallteg felt IPPO needed to be open minded about these issues as the Organisation needs to attract new people.

L Benzi asked ‘What do we offer new members as an Organisation’? Are we trying to be a Friendly Society where colleagues in the sector meet and socialise. Or do we want to offer more professional services? She also felt that small changes in Constitutional issues should be able to decided by the Board as taking these to a full meeting every time was a painfully slow process and thing took too long to be enacted.

The President informed the meeting that he had offered some suggestions for a re-designed IPPO logo but other board members had not been enthusiastic. He will continue to explore this issue.

L Benzi offered to ask a colleague who is a packaging designer (the President of ABRE currently) to take a look if it could be done without incurring costs

A Manly commented that the website could and should be our best recruiter and awareness raising vehicle. We should continue to invest in its improvement as a top priority.

L Benzi said approved PR members should be encouraged to list new Press Releases in a special area of the website.

B Wallteg said Presentations made by IPPO members, such as the ones made here in Milan should be listed/uploaded to the website.

Members should be encouraged to add the IPPO logo and a link to the website on their company salutations.

Concluding the website (and related issues) discussion the President asked anyone still encountering log on problems, or other issues, to let him know. Some profiles were very out of date and some retired or even deceased members were still listed.

He suggested the first task should be to edit the statement ‘What is IPPO’ currently appearing on the website as it is badly out of date. He would undertake this task and was encouraged to do it as soon as possible by those present (Action BM)

Website development and changes would be reviewed at the next full meeting of IPPO members.

  1. Plans for Future IPPO Meetings and activities to 2017

Big International shows during the period will be Pack Expo at LV (2015), and Emballage and Pack Expo Int (2016). Also ScanPack (2015) should be considered as a potential meeting venue.

No specific plans were in place for IPPO activities at these events, although A Manly understood the agreement with PMMI covered LV 2015. He was asked to check with the Secretary General
(correspondence relating to this is was circulated to members in August 2015)

A possible IPPO mission to Latin America was suggested if a suitable itinerary could be organised.

A Arikan said it might be possible to extend an invitation to some IPPO members to the exhibition in Istanbul in October 2015. She would investigate and refer to the Secretary General

  1. Any Other Business

The Treasurer (A Manly) gave a brief update of the financial position of IPPO:

He said finances had not changed substantially since the report given at interpack last May. Some further subs had been received and a small amount paid out to cover administrative expenses. Work undertaken on the website to date would be invoiced in due course (now received, August 2015)

He said exception travel grants for individual members (such as those made to two very long standing members for interpack 2014) were entirely at the discretion of the Board. But such grants were not generally made to members who simply wished to visit an event unless there was a compelling reason and real benefit to IPPO as a whole.

  1. Date of Next Meeting

The date of the next meeting is TBA but possibly at Pack Expo Las Vegas if a quorum is likely. The Secretary General will advise in due course.

The President closed the meeting at 13.55 and wished all present a pleasant and productive stay in Milan and a safe journey home.