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The IOP's merger with the IOM³ is well on course for smooth completion says the Institute's chief executive officer

I don’t usually use nautical metaphors but on this occasion I will make an exception because ‘Steady as she goes’ seems to describe so well the Institute of Packaging’s progress since it decided to merge with the Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining in late January.

There may have been one or two choppy patches, and it would be foolish to assume there won’t be more, but compared with what might have been expected, things are going well and the ship is on course for calmer waters.

First, that most critical barometer – membership. This time of year is by far our busiest for subscription renewals, and I’m happy to report that returns are flowing in and the number who are not renewing because they don’t like the direction we have taken are few and far between. There are of course some who have written to me voicing their disquiet. But I would ask them to give the new arrangements a chance before arriving at a firm conclusion. Several members who opposed the merger have now put their names forward for membership of the new Packaging Board within IOM³. This should be the course to chart so those with experience and commitment can influence the new organisation’s direction.

Secondly, while on the subject of the Packaging Board I am happy to report 30 nominations have been received for the 10 available places and ballot papers are going out as I write. Predictions we would struggle to find people wanting to take an active part have been confounded.

Thirdly, IoP’s key assets are finding a berth within IOM³. In Starpack’s case, for example, discussions have been held with sponsors and other partners and there is a clear determination to move forward to ensure this year’s competition is a success.

Space does not permit me to give more examples of how IoP and IOM³ members and staff are working together during the transition. Suffice it to say we are on course to achieve a successful merger and provide expanded opportunities for packaging professionals and the broader packaging industry.