Spotlight on Pallippuram Sajith, managing director of Bindwel-Stelda

As the year comes to an end, WhatPackaging? team talks to Pallippuram Sajith of Bindwel-Stelda about how the year (2023) was; what the learnings were; and how the packaging industry should march forward in 2024

30 Nov 2023 | By WhatPackaging? Team

Pallippuram Sajith: We could focus on reducing material consumption in packaging, which will be profitable in the end and more sustainable

One good thing from 2023 which you would like to carry forward to 2024?
In the past few years, we have been trying to bring attention of the brands to losses in transit - be it due to damages or pilferage. We could not catch much of their attention. With the help of live demos at trade shows and Stelda trials, we have been trying to achieve this. Discussions are taking place around how to mitigate this loss. We hope we can carry this momentum into 2024, where through Stelda trials, we can establish the savings.

Looking at 2023, what is the one thing that you think the packaging industry should abandon?
The packaging industry should let go of excess packaging and designing. Most of the corrugated boxes of brands are over engineered by way of reactions to field trials leading to wrong conclusions of strength. We also see the usage of straps in addition to case sealing of the flaps, and this process will  only do the job of reducing the strength of the box. Corrugated boxes are not designed in the optimal dimensional ratios for easy handling and for providing best transit stability. Though the transit or transport packaging can make or break your product and brand, it is not being given the due importance that it deserves.

Has the traditional learning curve become an extreme learning curve? As an organisation, how do you disseminate knowledge; both within and without?
We have been on a continuous learning spree. Today, our team understands more about corrugated boxes, tertiary packaging automation, and transit challenges more than most of the industry. We have been trying to disseminate this knowledge with the industry. We have developed special tests in association with accredited testing laboratories. We also have done research and published papers with the help of institutes like IITs. We strongly feel that the time has come to throw out the current postulations for shipper carton designs, and with the hope that we can work with the ecosystem and arrive at new methods.

What is your customer's topmost priority?
I think the customer is still focused on improving the primary packaging and reducing the cost of shipping. Both are important, as long as the methods adopted are sustainable.

Everyone is pushing the sustainability agenda. What does it really mean?
Unfortunately, sustainability is often considered as something that adds to the cost, and hence, remains more in discussions than in practice. We could focus on reducing material consumption in packaging, which will be profitable in the end and hence more sustainable. There is a scope in doing so in shipper carton packaging, be it reducing the weight of the boxes, removing additional methods of securing like strapping, or sticking to optimal dimensional ratios.

What is the conversation you are having with a customer in order to be prepared for the next 12 months?
I think the industry as a whole feels that the coming days will be good, at least from the perspective of domestic consumption. You can see this optimism across sectors, despite challenges in the supply chain and threats of the ongoing wars. We are having discussions with customers to embrace change in the long term. Unless focus is brought into their supply chain logistics - be it in terms of secure and strong packaging, palletising, handling and so on. There is a tremendous amount of money to be saved by agreeing to change.

Latest Poll

The packaging industry is confused by recycling and sustainability rules in India. What is the biggest challenge?

Results

The packaging industry is confused by recycling and sustainability rules in India. What is the biggest challenge?

Shortcomings in EPR policy

 

22.22%

Inadequate infrastructure

 

11.11%

Shortage of recycling firms

 

16.67%

Lack of consumer awareness

 

50.0%

Total Votes : 18

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