In the APPMA’s free Digital Lunchtime Series, starting tomorrow (17 September), a panel of industry experts from AMGC, APCO, Ai Group, and Detmold Group will dissect the topic Manufacturing: Adapting to the New Normal.

The panel, to be facilitated by Lindy Hughson, publisher of PKN and Food & Drink Business, will unpack the role of manufacturing in Australia’s post pandemic economic recovery and take a closer look at how a renewed focus on re-shoring, increased supply chain security, as well as a focus on sustainable manufacturing, can provide opportunities for industry growth.


Joining the discussion from the Advanced Manufacturing Growth Centre is managing director Dr Jens Goennemann, who has a wealth of experience overseeing large manufacturing operations in Australia and Europe, including long stints in the defence and aerospace sectors. Goennemann has been at the helm of AMGC since 2016, and he’ll bring his perspective on building a strong manufacturing base to support a local industry that can scale and commercialise products for export.

A crucial part of advancing our manufacturing sector is, of course, addressing sustainability, and well-placed to comment on this area is Brooke Donnelly, CEO of the Australian Packaging Covenant Organisation (APCO), who has spent her career working in product stewardship, collective impact, recycling and sustainability. She leads APCO’s strategic direction to ensure effective collaboration between industry, government, and consumers to drive positive environmental and circular economic activities for Australian communities. APCO is the custodian of the 2025 National Packaging Targets, and from Donnelly the audience will gain an understanding of how investing in a circular economy creates opportunities for business growth.

Someone with first-hand experience of this sustainabilty = business growth equation, and who will share this in the panel discussion, is Tom Lunn, general manager of sustainability and innovation at Detmold Group, one of the Australian packaging industry’s leading manufacturers. As leader of the Group’s LaunchPad innovation centre, Lunn spearheads research and development of new products and promotes the latest thinking in circular design to provide a comprehensive packaging range to global customers, with a reduced environmental impact.

And of course, a significant cog in the wheel of any manufacturing reset in Australia will be upskilling. Contributing to this aspect of the discussion will be Dr Peter Burn, the Chief Policy Advisor at Ai Group, Australia’s leading national employer association. He is responsible for policy development on a wide range of issues relevant to Ai Group members and works closely with Ai Group’s National Workplace Relations; Education and Training; and Industry Development Policy teams. Burn will bring his views on workforce development to support and sustain industry growth, and the role government could play in capability development.

Register here if you’d like to find out more about how building a strong manufacturing base will allow Australia to reduce supply chain risk, respond to crises more effectively, and grow a thriving local industry with the ability to scale and commercialise products for export.


Food & Drink Business

The Australian Food Pact is the latest addition to the arsenal of projects and R&D working to halve the country’s food waste by 2030. Simplot Australia, Woolworths Group, Goodman Fielder and Coles Group are four of the founding signatories, joined by Mars Australia, Mondelēz Australia, ARECO Pacific, and McCain Foods.

With the removal of restrictions across states and transitioning into a COVID-19 norm, Woolworths has announced all team members must be vaccinated in the coming months to keep working.

Asahi Beverages has expanded its initiative to buy barley direct from farmers, with seven New South Wales growers now supplying the company’s Yatala brewery in Queensland.