PACKAGING Innovations & Empack Birmingham has been postponed to June 2021, organiser Easyfairs has confirmed.
The event was due to take place on March 3 and 4 but has been put back to June 17 and 18 due to the ongoing uncertainty caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.
Renan Joel, divisional director for Easyfairs UK & global’s packaging events, said, “Since the pandemic first hit earlier this year, we have maintained our proximity to our community through regular webinars, which have been vital to keep the industry informed of the latest developments and discuss crucial issues during this time of massive upheaval and change.
“Additionally, we have worked tirelessly as a company to put in place numerous safety measures to ensure we can deliver events to the highest possible standards and have in fact run exhibitions in Germany, the Netherlands and Belgium successfully, all of which have been accredited by the industry standard SGS for adherence to the highest safety standards. However, with the UK Government’s continuing social distancing measures, new lockdown in England and push-back on the go live date for exhibitions, it has become increasingly clear that we will not have the opportunity to organise the Birmingham event with the confidence that we will be able to open the doors at the start of March.
“We pride ourselves on the highest quality content and organisation, but the ongoing restrictions surrounding Covid-19 prevent us from having the lead time to do this successfully. Therefore, our only option is to delay the event until later in the year. With this move, we reaffirm our commitment to ensuring the industry will have the most valuable event in June 2021 to gather and reignite business opportunities as the world emerges from the Coronavirus pandemic.”
Easyfairs has been running weekly packaging Innovation Talks since March, with the webinars available on the Packaging Innovations & Empack website. The organisation is set to launch an online industry publication in January and a monthly series of virtual Discovery Day events, which will focus on a single vertical sector for each event.
Joel added, “2020 has been a very unusual year: the Covid-19 pandemic has had a huge impact on everyone’s lives, and specifically in the exhibitions industry on the ability to bring people together to run live events over the past months, and it is clear that this will continue to impact on the first months of 2021. Although we are currently in challenging times, it has not only highlighted the potential of the digital world but also the true value humans place on meeting and interacting with one another in person. This gives us a very exciting opportunity to revitalise our event offering and reignite other opportunities through an increased digital – and even hybrid – presence.
“We made the decision to postpone the March edition in close consultation with our exhibitors, visitors and partners, taking into account their feedback and requirements and balancing the need for an opportunity to come together with the current circumstances surrounding the pandemic in the UK. Our top priority is the health, safety and wellbeing of our exhibitors, visitors and staff. I would like to thank them all, and the wider packaging community, for their ongoing support and commitment to the event. It is clear that the industry is just waiting for the day that it can meet in person and reinvigorate those valuable business relationships and opportunities that come from face-to-face interaction.
“Our team never stops and is working hard on shaping our digital offering and an exceptional event in June 2021, full of high-quality content and business opportunities. Events will definitely play a huge role in the economic recovery.”