PPMA Awards Winners Announced

Stuart Pritchard September 27, 2017

The PPMA Group of Associations has announced the winners of the PPMA Group Industry Awards 2017. The annual awards recognise innovation, smart manufacturing, entrepreneurship and collaboration in the processing and packaging machinery industry. The event at the National Motorcycle Museum in Birmingham was hosted by stand-up comedian Stewart Francis and Sky Sports News presenter Hayley McQueen.

More than 400 people from the manufacturing industry gathered to hear who would be crowned the winners by an independent panel of 10 esteemed industry experts, and who would be recognised as highly commended in each of the 11 categories, including Innovative Robotic Machinery, Partnership of the Year and the prestigious Lifetime Achievement award.


Opening the awards, Mark Williamson, Chairman of the PPMA Group of Associations spoke about the association’s 30th anniversary and the ongoing developments to provide ‘further advances for all its 500 plus member companies in the coming twelve months.’ Williamson added: “No one can deny that change is happening in the world, and we are developing the PPMA to reflect this changing business environment. Whether it is Brexit, Industry 4.0, cyber security or the growth of digital platforms, we are developing plans for roll-out in 2018. We will be modernising the way we do things to stay relevant in today’s business world.”

Williamson also announced the return of the UKIVA Machine Vision Conference, to be held at the MK Arena in Milton Keynes on 16th May 2018. He was joined by PPMA Group of Associations CEO, Dr. Andrew Mint who recognised the changing tides of the PPMA returning to an association that is run by its members, for its members and the efforts of its charity, PPMA BEST to attract new people to the industry.

“We all know that attracting new people to our industry is a challenge,” said Mint. “BEST is the PPMA’s charity which is designed to help you in this endeavour, by offering financial as well as practical support. One of our first events is a STEM day at the Museum of Science in Manchester this November. Nearly 150 school pupils are already confirmed to attend and we look forward to inspiring them to see how exciting our sector really is.”

Andrew encouraged attendees to find out more by visiting the PPMA BEST stand (B01) at the PPMA Show – the UK’s unmissable, free-to-attend processing and packaging machinery exhibition. “Once again, the PPMA Show 2017 will bring all corners of the industry together under one roof to network, discuss and explore technologies that can advance the production process across a wide range of sectors,” he added. “It presents an opportunity for exhibitors to showcase their latest technologies to an audience of thousands plus benefit from unparalleled networking opportunities. We look forward to two more days of knowledge-sharing and innovation showcases at what is set to be our biggest show in 12 years.”


The big winners of the night included Pacepacker Services and Russell Finex who both took home two awards each. Packpacker scooped the Innovative Packaging Machinery and Innovative Ancillary Equipment awards, while Russell Finex was recognised as Exporter of the Year and was the first company to be honoured in PPMA’s brand-new category, Environmental Initiative of the Year, for its adoption of green measures.

Russell Finex was selected for its Lean Manufacturing programme which includes a ‘paperless initiative, eco-friendly power sources and appliances such as solar panels, a wood pellet boiler, eco-certified air conditioning systems and LED lights. These measures have helped the business reduce energy consumption by 8% in the last 12-months, with solar energy alone expected to save the business in excess of £1 million over the next 20-years.


Commenting on its second win of the night, Ray Singh, Managing Director of Russell Finex said: “As we grow year on year we’re using more energy so it’s crucial that we are environmentally responsible. We also have plans to make this a global initiative, rolling it out across our locations in the USA, Belgium, India and China.

“We’re a proud member of the PPMA Group and so are over the moon to have won two awards. This is the second year in a row we’ve come away with Exporter of the Year, which is an area we have been focusing on in order to better service customers and reach new markets.”

Other notable winners included Jake Martin of Yorkshire Packaging Systems who scooped the Apprentice of the Year title for his ‘eager, committed, hard-working and excellent working attitude’. Individual accolades were also recognised in the Lifetime Achievement Award, identifying one manufacturing professional who has made an outstanding contribution to the industry. The recipient, David Norris of DC Norris, was honoured for his commitment and passion for the industry and quality manufacturing, helping to grow his company from ‘humble beginnings to the multi-million-pound global enterprise it is today.’


Speaking about his Lifetime Achievement Award, David Norris, said: “I’m lost for words; it’s unbelievable to have won this prestigious award after a lifetime in food processing machinery. But it also feels like the beginning for DC Norris – we still have more to conquer. And none of it would be possible without our fantastic team.”



A full list of the PPMA Group Industry Award winners:

Innovative Packaging Machinery – sponsored by Omron

Finalists:  Bradman Lake; Brillopak Ltd; Pacepacker Services; PFM Packaging Machinery; Tna Solutions; Linx Printing Technologies; Gebo Cermex and ULMA Packaging Ltd

Highly commended: PFM Packaging Machinery and Tna Solutions

Winner: Pacepacker Services.


Innovative Processing System – sponsored by Tna Solutions

 Finalists: DC Norris & Company; Ishida; Loma Systems; Tapflo UK Ltd and Ytron-Quadro (UK) Ltd

Highly commended: Tapflo UK Ltd

Winner: Ishida Europe


Innovative Robotics Solution

Finalists: Brillopak Ltd; Ishida Europe; OAL and Tekpak

Highly commended: Brillopak

Winner: OAL


Innovative Vision Solution

Finalists: Acrovision; Altec GmbH\ FOBA Laser Marking + Engraving; ClearView Imaging; Industrial Vision Systems Ltd and Tekpak

 Highly commended: Tekpak

Winner: Industrial Vision Systems


Innovative Ancillary Equipment

Finalists: SICK (UK) Ltd; Flexco; Simmatic Automation and Pacepacker Services

Highly commended: Flexco

Winner: Pacepacker Services


Exporter of the Year

Finalists: Endoline and Russell Finex

Highly commended: Endoline

Winner: Russell Finex


Exceptional Sales Performance

Finalists: Fortress Technology; Gordian Strapping Ltd; Grunwald UK; Riggs Autopack Ltd and ADSOL

Highly commended: Gordian Strapping Ltd

Winner: Riggs Autopack


Partnership of the Year

Finalists: Evolution BPS & MBF; ICS Cool Energy & LINPAC Packaging; Tekpak & Ilapak and Dimaco Ltd. & Starflex Packaging Europe Ltd.

Highly commended: Tekpak & Ilapak

Winner: Dimaco Ltd. & Starflex Packaging Europe Ltd.


Environmental Initiative of the Year – sponsored by Sutton Winson

Finalists: Dimaco; ICS Cooling; Trescal and Russell Finex

Highly commended: ICS Cooling

Winner: Russell Finex


Apprentice of the Year – sponsored by FESTO AG

Finalists: Gripple Automation Ltd- Joe Goldthorpe; Premier Labellers- Jordan Hynes; ADSOL UK- Matthew Johnson; Scorpion Vision Ltd- Josh; HepcoMotion- Tobias Cowan; Trescal UK – Sam Dilly and Yorkshire Packaging Systems Ltd – Jake Martin

Highly commended: Tobias Cowan of Hepco Motion

Winner: Jake Martin of Yorkshire Packaging Systems Ltd


Lifetime Achievement Award

David Norris of DC Norris