PACK EXPO, the most comprehensive packaging and processing event in North America, is set to return to the Las Vegas Convention Center from Sept. 11 to 13. Produced by PMMI, the Association for Packaging and Processing Technologies, the show is intended for anyone who is involved in the challenging environment of packaging and processing.

“This show has grown tremendously over the years. It will be our biggest one yet, with more than 2,000 exhibiting companies covering nearly 1 million square feet,” Laura Thompson, vice president of trade shows for PMMI, tells Dairy Foods. “We are more than 10% larger than our 2019 show, which had been our biggest one yet. 

“PACK EXPO covers 40 vertical markets, so there is a huge breadth in solutions available. … There are specific dairy solutions at the show, from processing to packaging, but there are also a lot of opportunities to find crossover solutions as well,” Thompson adds.

PACK EXPO also wants to make it easy for attendees to find what they are looking for. Hence, there are seven targeted pavilions at the show. Dairy processors will be specifically interested in visiting the Processing Zone, which supports the integration of processing and packaging and will showcase front-of-the-line solutions like homogenizing, heat treating, forming/sizing, and coating.

“[The Processing Zone] will be about double the size as it was at the previous [show] and is targeted toward specific processing solutions,” Thompson explains. “We also have the Logistics Pavilion, new to Las Vegas, which provides warehousing services, transportation, logistics and supply chain solutions.”

Other pavilions at PACK EXPO include the PACKage Printing Pavilion, the Containers and Materials Pavilion, and the Reusable Packaging Pavilion. “We also have the general show space, which is full of different machinery solutions [regarding] anything anybody could possibly need,” Thompson notes. “I recommend anyone who is going to the show check out the website in advance to search for specific solutions and narrow down and target what you are looking for to make the most out of your experience.”

Educational component

PACK EXPO will feature more than 100 education sessions. According to Thompson, PMMI is cognizant that show attendees have limited time and desire education sessions that provide quick, targeted content, so that visitors can still see all of the exhibits. Hence, sessions will take place on the show floor itself, and typically last between 30 minutes and one hour.

“We have a dedicated Processing Innovation Stage, which has more than 15 sessions and is located in the Processing Zone,” she said. “We also have the Forum, which is more of an interactive concept, where it often starts with a topic and there is a lot of discussion among your peers about the topic at hand.”


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New this year is the Industry Speaks Stage. “We are fortunate to work with about 40 association partners at the show. Many of them are subject matter experts in their particular industry,” Thompson states. “They will be providing sessions throughout the show.”

Beyond education, look for networking events. These include the Packaging and Processing Women’s Leadership Network, which will host a breakfast on the second day of the show.

The PACK Gives BACK event is returning this year in a new format. It will take place prior to the show on Sept. 10 at 6:30 p.m. at the Bellagio Hotel and Casino. The event will feature a private performance of “O” by Cirque du Soleil. 

“It is sponsored by Rockwell Automation and all proceeds benefit the PMMI Foundation,” Thompson says. “We typically give away six scholarships based on the proceeds from this event.”

Additionally, PACK EXPO will offer Young Professionals and First-Timer events.

Sustainability solutions

New to PACK EXPO in 2023 is the Sustainability Central stage, where attendees will hear from experts on a range of packaging sustainability topics and learn how to make brands more sustainable in the future.

“Everyone is looking at ways to make not only their packages but their processes more sustainable. [Sustainability Central] will be the theme of a city and we have different parts of sustainability we will focus on,” Thompson relays. “These parts are design, materials, manufacturing, recovery, logistics, and data.”

Also, PACK EXPO has a “green” designation. Attendees looking for a specific material or a manufacturing process that is sustainable should look for a PACK EXPO green icon at a company’s booth. Attendees can also go to the PACK EXPO website,, which features a Sustainability Finder.

“These have been vetted to ensure sustainability, whether it is reduced energy, recyclable or biodegradable packaging. It runs the gamut of sustainable solutions,” Thompson asserts.

Additionally, PACK EXPO features the Showcase of Packaging Innovations, located adjacent to Sustainability Central, which displays award-nominated packaging solutions, many of which are new packages that focus on sustainability.

“Lastly, we have our Technology Excellence Awards. We have three finalists in four different categories, which can be found on our website,” Thompson concludes. “People can vote during the first couple of days of the show. …It is great to highlight the latest and greatest in the industry.”