Mike Hachtman Interview (Page 2)

Continued from Page 1.

RPA Edi­tor — What are the key changes you see hap­pen­ing in the reusable mar­ket­place in the near future?

Hacht­man — Reusable sys­tems are quickly becom­ing main­stream. In the past, reusable pack­ag­ing providers had an uphill bat­tle to try and edu­cate the mar­ket before their prod­ucts and ser­vices could be prop­erly under­stood. This edu­ca­tional chal­lenge has been addressed in many mar­kets today, so the focus has shifted from val­i­dat­ing the value of reuse to con­tin­ued inno­va­tion. Mar­kets are no longer sat­is­fied with our prod­ucts sim­ply because they are reusable; we must con­tinue to show addi­tional value.

RPA Edi­tor — Why did you choose to become a mem­ber of the RPA lead­er­ship team?

Hacht­man — The RPA is the only trade orga­ni­za­tion focused on the unique require­ments of reusable pack­ag­ing. As a long-time mem­ber, I have seen those require­ments change as the indus­try has grown and gained accep­tance. I feel we are at a piv­otal moment in the devel­op­ment of the reusable pack­ag­ing indus­try, and feel strongly about help­ing guide the RPA to take full advan­tage.

RPA Edi­tor — What value have you gained per­son­ally by being a mem­ber of the RPA?

Hacht­man — Per­son­ally, the RPA has allowed me an oppor­tu­nity to gain a greater under­stand­ing of the var­i­ous types of reusable pack­ag­ing and sys­tems beyond what IFCO pro­vides. This under­stand­ing gives me greater insight into pos­si­ble solu­tions for IFCO’s cus­tomers. In addi­tion, the oppor­tu­nity to net­work with indus­try peers has proven very valu­able in our rel­a­tively small indus­try group.

RPA Edi­tor – What has your com­pany gained from your involve­ment?

Hacht­man — While there are dif­fer­ences between the var­i­ous types of reusable pack­ag­ing and sys­tems, there are also mul­ti­ple sim­i­lar­i­ties. IFCO is able to learn from best prac­tices from across the reusables indus­try to see how we might may apply them to our busi­nesses and ben­e­fit our cus­tomers.

RPA Edi­tor — Has the RPA had a pos­i­tive impact on your busi­ness?

Hacht­man — Many of the stud­ies con­ducted by the RPA in the past have helped val­i­date and quan­tify the ben­e­fits of reusable pack­ag­ing.

RPA Edi­tor – Why would you rec­om­mend mem­ber­ship in the RPA to another com­pany?

Hacht­man — The reusable pack­ag­ing indus­try is not homoge­nous; each provider has its own unique needs for the asso­ci­a­tion to fill — be it research, net­work­ing, mar­ket­ing, etc. If your com­pany is not a mem­ber of the asso­ci­a­tion, you’re miss­ing out on the oppor­tu­nity to have your unique needs rep­re­sented and allow­ing your peers (and com­peti­tors!) to shape the mar­ket­place for you.

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