• The 2021 PIDA event took place virtually, with close on 300 attendees across the two  days.
    The 2021 PIDA event took place virtually, with close on 300 attendees across the two days.
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This year’s Packaging Innovation & Design Awards (PIDA) has come and gone, and in a year that saw an unprecedented number of high-quality entries across all categories, Melbourne-based flexible packaging specialist OF Packaging cleaned up, taking out three gold awards during the two-day virtual event.

OF Packaging took out the Domestic & Household Packaging Design, Food Packaging Design, and Labelling & Decoration Design of the Year gongs for its work on Zero Co’s innovative reuse and refill option made from recycled plastic for the first award, and its high-barrier mono-polymer pouch for Brookfarm for the second and third gold. 

“The team at OF Packaging are overwhelmed with gratitude for the recognition we’ve received in this year’s awards, as both finalists and winners in multiple categories,” says Joe Foster, managing director of OF Packaging.

MD of OF Packaging, Joe Foster (left) with marketing manager Jessica Ansell.
MD of OF Packaging, Joe Foster (left) with marketing manager Jessica Ansell.

“To see the high-level of entries and the industry dedication to innovation and sustainability is truly remarkable, and OF Pack is proud to be a part of it. 

“We have very exciting sustainability projects in the pipeline that will continue to contribute positively to the industry, and keep us in good stead into the future as we continue pushing the boundaries of packaging.” 

The 2021 PIDAs also saw many standouts, including a record number of entries in the Sustainable Packaging Design category.

With 26 finalists in this category, coming from all areas of the waste hierarchy, the judges decided to split the category to recognise outstanding innovation across six sub-categories – General, Recycled Content, Reuse, Recycle, Closed Loop, and Industrial.

Among the innovative projects highlighted, qDesign Enterprises led the pack, taking out two golds (Sustainable Packaging Design of the Year – Closed Loop, and the Marketing Design of the Year) and a bronze award (Food Packaging Design of the Year) for the Oasis Spice Shaker project. 

Commenting on the recognition post ceremony, director of qDesign, Michael Grima said: “We could not be prouder. It took three years to deliver this circular concept to market, launched in the middle of a Melbourne Covid lockdown when reusable and refill models were being banned. Clearly we like a challenge.”

Overjoyed: Michael Grima, director of qDesign Enterprises with the winning Oasis pack, which won two golds and a bronze award at the PIDA 2021 ceremony.
Overjoyed: Michael Grima, director of qDesign Enterprises with the winning Oasis pack, which won two golds and a bronze award at the PIDA 2021 ceremony.

“As for the future, we know the vision has only partly been delivered in-store due to Covid and we look forward to learning more when fully live. On the materials science side, we are still keen to switch to 100 per cent food grade PCR-PP, which we investigated in 2019 and just need further scale to make it a reality.”

Coordinated by the Awards’ organiser, the Australian Institute of Packaging (AIP), the event was well attended, with over 300 participants from all over Australia for the two-day virtual event.

Nerida Kelton, executive director of the AIP, told PKN she was proud of all of the nominees for this year’s PIDAs, all in all making for a very successful event in her eyes.

“Throughout all of the award-winning designs that we saw over the last two days, what really stood out was that all of them have built sustainable and/or circular design into their packs,” Kelton says.

“No longer can a pack be put on shelf without meeting the 2025 National Packaging Targets, which is a positive step for lowering the environmental impact of the region.

Successful program: Nerida Kelton, executive director Australian Institute of Packaging.
Successful program: Nerida Kelton, executive director Australian Institute of Packaging.

“As one of the gold winners indicated, this is just the start of the sustainability journey and everyone should be very proud of their step changes to date.”

All winners of the PIDAs are now eligible to represent the region on a global stage through the WorldStar Packaging Awards. 

For PKN’s entire coverage of the two-day virtual event, click through to the following links to read more.

Food Packaging Design of the Year

Beverage Packaging Design of the Year

Domestic & Household Packaging Design of the Year

Health, Beauty & Wellness Packaging Design of the Year

Labelling & Decoration Design of the Year

Outside of the Box Design of the Year

Sustainable Packaging Design of the Year

Marketing Design of the Year

Save Food Packaging Design of the Year

Young Packaging Professional of the Year

Industry Packaging Professional of the Year

ABA Scholarship Program and AIP President's Scholarship winners

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