PPMA equipment show postponed until 2021 over pandemic concerns
Organisers of the UK’s key annual packaging and processing equipment event, PPMA, have stated the industry showcase is to be postponed until next year amid ongoing uncertainty surrounding the coronavirus pandemic.
The show’s management said that it had held detailed conversations with the venue, National Exhibition Centre (NEC), and in the interests of health and safety for all concerned, it is moving from this September to 28-30 September 2021.
Major manufacturers of equipment across a number of sectors, including confectionery and bakery lines were due to be exhibited at the event, which has operated for over 30 years.
Speaking about the decision, the organising team said that it had considered the implications for visitors and exhibitors in respect of everything from social distancing, availability of hotels, travel and the preparation time required.
Furthermore, the team noted that the Government has also not yet relaxed restrictions regarding mass gatherings, or published any guidelines for staging large scale events, that had also impacted on its decision, with the health and safety of visitors remaining paramount.
Richard Little, PPMA’s Show Director, said: “It’s the first time that we will not be staging our flagship event since the show’s inception in 1988, which is really disappointing. “While we are pleased the coronavirus infection rate currently appears to be declining in the UK, the future trend is by no means certain and the risk remains. There are too many unknown variables to consider and our utmost priority is of course to ensure the safety of all those involved with our show.
“We also had to consider that many of our exhibitors and visitors to our shows are categorised by the Government as key workers, providing a range of essential engineering and maintenance services to aid the critical supply of food and pharmaceutical goods. “On behalf of the PPMA, I would like to take this opportunity to thank all our exhibitors, suppliers, registered visitors, staff members and media partners alike for their continued support during these unprecedented times. We now look forward to PPMA Show 2021,” he added.
As organisers noted, this year’s planned show had already attracted strong interest, with over three quarters of all exhibition space sold seven months prior to the Government lockdown in March. The show was on course to be one of the largest PPMA shows in 32 years, which reinforces its growing popularity and brand strength. The PPMA Show 2020 website (www.ppmashow.co.uk) will remain a continual information source for exhibitors and visitors, which will include enhanced media and video content.