Digital Watermarks Initiative HolyGrail 2.0 – Revolutionizing Sorting and Recycling by Intelligent Packaging Containing Digital Watermarks

duo presentation by An Vossen, Executive Manager, PLAREBEL vzw/asbl, Belgian Catalyst for the Circular Plastic Value Chain & Gian De Belder, Technical Director Packaging Sustainability, Procter & Gamble at Online Packaging Design 4 Sustainability Conference (10 November 2020, 12:00 – 16:00 CET). REGISTER HERE to attend.

An Vossen

An Vossen was already at the cradle of Plarebel in 1996, a non-profit organisation that is the reference in Belgium for anyone looking for information, advice and guidance on all aspects of circular plastics, including circular design and effective recycling. An is also active in several European industry associations and initiatives, and is constantly looking for new opportunities to respond to the many challenges in the transition towards a circular economy for all plastics. An early passion for plastic recycling has become a lifelong pursuit to enable a circular economy for plastics; driven by the evolving relationship between people and planet, she proudly carries the art of recycling in her heart!

For more than 20 years, she has been building expertise and extending her network, whilst supporting and advising on plastic recycling. In 2018 she launched a new future trajectory for Plarebel to expand their product portfolio beyond the scope of household plastic packaging waste. Today Plarebel profiles itself as the Belgian catalyst for the circular value chain for plastics.

Gian De Belder is a technical director and packaging technologist at Procter & Gamble (P&G), one of the largest consumer packaged goods companies in the world.
In his 20+ year career at P&G, Gian has helped drive R&D into sustainable packaging across the company. With experience in upstream technologies, sustainable resins and EU funding projects, Gian has been involved in developing key partnerships across the value chain andmanaging open innovation through P&G’s Connect & Develop Programme.
To help drive cross-sector collaboration, Gian is a board member of Petcore Europe (the association representing the complete PET value chain in Europe), next to being very active in Plastic Recyclers Europe’s Recyclass platform (chair of advisory board). Gian is also active in other industry associations such as Ceflex, Consumer Goods Forum and others. He is also a regular speaker at Packaging Conferences.

Most recently, Gian has been leading the 3-year pioneering project “HolyGrail” on the
standardisation of markers/ watermarks in packaging (barcode for recycling), to increase
efficiencies in high-quality sorting and to strive for higher recycling rates, as part of the Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s New Plastics Economy initiative. This project received 2 awards in Packaging Europe’s 2019 Sustainability Awards: category winner ‘Driving the Circular Economy”and “Overall Winner”, next to some other awards.

Gian has also been official juror for multiple packaging awards: PackTheFuture 2018 (Elipso+IKV = German and French association for plastics packaging and films), Dow DuPont Packaging Innovation Awards (2018), 2020 Plastics Recycling Awards and Packaging Europe’s Sustainability Awards (2019+2020).

He has been elected finalist for the 2018 and 2019 “EU Plastics Recycling Ambassador” (from Plastic Recyclers Europe) and actually received this title in 2019.

Gian is 45 years old and holds a degree in Polymer & Composites Engineering from Leuven University. He was born in Belgium and is married with 2 children. He is a big fan of sports (running/ squash/padel/cycling) and travel.

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