Barber appointed new PPMA chairman

David Barber

THE PPMA Group of Associations has announced the appointment of David Barber as its new chairman.

Barber, who was elected to the PPMA board of directors in 2017 and is the head of R&D for metal detection specialist Mettler-Toledo Safeline, succeeds Tim Paul who has held the role for the past two years.

PPMA Group revealed he has experience in business transformation and helping to bring about a range of innovative products and services, which aligns with the organisation’s own ethos in how it continues to support its 500+ members.

Outgoing chairman Tim Paul said, “David has significant experience of implementing successful projects and embraces the Group’s strategic objectives in how it reaches out to even more members. Through the onset of the coronavirus and the UK’s future trading relationship with Europe, the PPMA has had to change its modus operandi due to the postponement of live events, face-to-face networking opportunities, and training and seminars – to name a few. We have had to be flexible, adapt to change, and look at other mediums to support members during the imposed restrictions.

Tim Paul

“Under David’s chairmanship, and with the continued support of the PPMA board of directors and PPMA staff, I believe that we’re in a strong position to run our flagship PPMA Show next year, as well other bespoke industry events. It is a huge credit to the way the PPMA has been run over many years and testament to those it continues to serve.”

David Barber paid tribute to his predecessor for his hard work, achievements, and helping to steer the organisation through a period of ‘unprecedented’ change.

“These are challenging times, but it has reinforced the value of trade associations to receive advice and for members to utilise the PR opportunities available to promote their products and services,” he said. “It’s fair to say that the processing and packaging industry has probably outperformed many other industry sectors due to being heavily involved with the food, beverage, and pharmaceutical sectors.

“Economic challenges are often when the most opportunities arise because companies are forced to think outside of the box. Therefore, the PPMA needs to be an enabler to support members; whether through live or virtual events, business information, or lobbying-type activities in conjunction with associated third-party organisations.

“As a business, we have to continually adapt to change and be on the front foot. It’s important to look beyond our immediate sector to share information and efficiencies, and to leverage from a wide network of events and other industry resources.”

Barber believes the PPMA should always remain true to its roots in being able to stage events, though he reckons digital technology will have a greater role to play in how the group engages with its members and the impact it can have on business efficiencies.

“The world is changing, business is changing, and we need to make sure that the PPMA Group of Associations is equipped and flexible in its approach to serve all those it supports,” he added. “The group has always been keen to embrace new ways of working; therefore, embracing new technologies and industry unification are key to the ongoing success of the PPMA and UK manufacturing at large.”