The International Council of Forest and Paper Associations (ICFPA) seventh biennial International CEO Roundtable today took place in Washington, D.C. More than 20 forest and paper industry CEOs and association leaders from around the world met to discuss industry innovation and opportunities for the future.
“Our industry creates products that people around the world use and need,” said Mark Gardner, president and CEO of Sappi North America, who chaired the roundtable. “Coming together and sharing best practices, ideas and insights allows us all to continue to make sustainable products for generations to come.”
The CEOs discussed industry improvements in sustainability practices and innovation as well as global developments in manufacturing, marketing, products and workforce. Keynote speaker Joey Reiman provided insights about using purpose to create a brighter future and lasting legacy for the industry.
The CEOs endorsed the Blue Sky Young Researchers Innovation Award initiative, which aims to reposition the global forest products sector, renew its image, and create interest in the industry as a future workplace.
South African organisation Pamsa, a member of ICFPA, are proud to already have an extensive pre-competitive research and development programme run through their Process Research Unit (PRU). “Their role is to do innovative pre-competitive ‘building block’ type research which individual companies can then develop further to create competitive products and innovation,” says Jane Molony Pamsa’s executive director.
At the same time PAMSA’s PRU produces masters and PhD students who can then further the aims of reinventing the industry through innovation. PAMSA looks forward to having students compete for the Blue Sky Young Researchers Innovation Award
The next ICFPA International CEO Roundtable will take place in Berlin, Germany in 2017.
The ICFPA represents more than 30 national and regional forest and paper associations around the world. Together, ICFPA members represent over 90 percent of global paper production and half of global wood production.
For more information about the sustainability of the global forest and paper industry, visit icfpa.org.