H.J. Heinz Company's Michael Okoroafor to Keynote Bio-Plastek 2011 Forum on Bioplastics

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Late last month, H.J. Heinz Company announced that starting this June it will use The Coca-Cola Company’s plant-based plastic bottle for packaging its venerable ketchup. The rationale for this important move will be given in the exclusive keynote presentation by Heinz’s vice president-R&D/innovation, Dr. Michael Okoroafor, at the BioPlastek 2011 Forum on Bioplastics Today and Tomorrow. Dr. Okoroafor will “address packaging opportunities that are derived from plant-based materials and enabling key supply chain requirements.” The Forum, to feature over 40 presentations from the bioplastics value chain, will take place on June 27-29, 2011 at the Waldorf-Astoria, in New York City.

BioPlastek 2011 Forum

The sustainability paradigm has provided Heinz with a new holistic way of looking at products, services, consumers and the value chain in ways that not only foster tremendous innovation but also give competitive edge.

Late last month, H.J. Heinz Company made headlines when it announced that starting this June it will use The Coca-Cola Company’s plant-based plastic bottle to package its venerable ketchup in the U.S. and then expand its use worldwide. What were the motivating factors behind this important move?

The answer will come from Heinz’s Dr. Michael Okoroafor, Vice President-Packaging R&D/Innovation, in a keynote presentation he will deliver exclusively at the BioPlastek 2011 Forum on Bioplastics Today and Tomorrow. The Forum will take place on June 27-29, 2011 at The Waldorf-Astoria in New York City.

The rationale for the decision by H.J. Heinz is that consumers seek products that are both innovative and that protect the environment. It is consistent with the title of Dr. Okoroafor’s keynote presentation, “Leveraging Creative Biobased Packaging to Drive Brand Differentiation.”

Companies like Heinz are facing the challenge to develop products with this public sentiment in mind even though the business case is not as clear cut as building product differentiation or driving operational efficiencies. But as Dr. Okoroafor points out, “We at Heinz have responded to these realities and have converted them into opportunities. The sustainability paradigm has provided us with a new holistic way of looking at products, services, consumers and the value chain in ways that not only foster tremendous innovation but also give competitive edge.”

Dr. Okoroafor’s leadoff presentation at the BioPlastek 2011 Forum will address packaging opportunities that are derived from plant-based materials and enabling key supply chain requirements. Following will be over 40 presentations from the bioplastics value chain providing insightful analyses of where the bioplastics industry is today, where it will be tomorrow and why.

BioPlastek 2011 Forum program, hotel, exhibit and registration details are available on http://www.bioplastek.com.

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Ron Schotland
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