Roundup: IFCO North America Appoints Key Roles, Lifdek Corrugated Skid, Paxxal Pallet’s Secret Sauce

IFCO Appoints Martinez, Kelly to Key Roles

IFCO, the leading global provider of reusable packaging solutions, today announced the appointment of industry veterans Fortunato Martinez and Craig Kelly to its North American business unit. Martinez will serve as Vice President, Commodity Management. Kelly will serve as Vice President, Grower Sales.

“I am delighted to welcome these two fresh food supply chain experts to the IFCO team,” said Daniel Walsh, President of IFCO North America. “Fortunato Martinez and Craig Kelly are talented and experienced leaders who will help us serve our customers better, faster and more completely than ever before and I am certain they will have an immediate, tangible and long-lasting impact on IFCO’s fresh food business.”

Mr. Martinez will oversee the commodity management team consisting of commodity managers and the entire IFCO supply chain development team. He has been a consultant to IFCO since 2012, developing and managing grapes and citrus commodities in Chile. Additionally, he has supported business development in Latin America covering numerous countries and a variety of commodities.

Prior to his association with IFCO, Martinez held general management and business development positions during his sixteen-year career with Chiquita Brands Inc. in Latin America, Mexico and the United States. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Mechanical Engineering and a Master’s Degree in Business Administration from Monterrey Technological Institute in Monterrey, Mexico, a Master’s Degree in International Management from Thunderbird School of Global Management in Glendale, Arizona and a Master’s Degree in Transportation & Logistics from European University in Antwerp, Belgium.

Craig Kelly will oversee IFCO’s North American grower sales team, covering the U.S., Mexico, and Canada.  Mr. Kelly joined IFCO in 2013 and previously served as Director of Grower Sales.  Prior to joining IFCO, he served as Director of Sales at CHEP, IFCO’s sister company also owned by Brambles, Ltd. He is a seasoned sales leader and a key figure in the NA produce industry, and previously served in the major roles at ZAPF Creation, Evenflow and Kraft.  He is a member of numerous industry and professional organizations and holds a Bachelor of Science degree from St. Joseph’s University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.


Lifdek Corporation Announces Availability of Corrugated Skids

Lifdek Corporation, an innovator of site-assembled corrugated paper pallet technology, has developed new corrugated skids. A portion of worldwide shipping uses equipment that is not compatible with traditional pallets having a bottom deck; they use skids. The new Lifdek™ skids are a reliable and tough alternative using corrugated paperboard, offering a sustainable cost saving solution.

The new Lifdek skids, essentially a paper pallet version with no bottom deck, provide another low-cost shipping platform. The Lifdek skids fold together from two die cut blanks without the use of glue or staples in under a minute and can support more than four tons. Lifdek skids are available in standard sizes, custom sizes, air freight versions, and fractional pallet sizes for retail POP displays. A Lifdek skid assembly machine is currently in development that will provide a rapid assembly in thirty seconds with just one person.

According to Joseph Danko, President of Lifdek, “A portion of shippers use stacker type forklifts or other types of handling equipment that necessitate the use of skids, and now we have a tough new solution for companies to produce their own skids on-site from corrugated paperboard.”

Lifdek pallets were originally developed to address the needs of the largest section of the pallet market, fast moving consumables. Incoming pallet freight and pallet storage costs are reduced by nearly 90% because Lifdek pallets and skids are received and stored flat. Lifdek pallets and skids are recycled by the end receiver with other used corrugated boxes, generating recycling revenue while eliminating staging, storing and loading costs required with wood pallet retrieval. At less than eight pounds, Lifdek paper pallets and skids offer substantial air and LTL freight savings billed by weight and are a safer alternative for employees and retail customers. This one-way shipping approach also eliminates the chance of cross-contamination from prior use, providing substantial safety benefits for grocery and pharmaceutical applications.

Lifdek licenses its pallet and skid technology to box manufacturers worldwide, which produce the die-cut blanks for their use as well as their local customers. Lifdek licensees have access to over a hundred pallet and skid sizes and designs, with new sizes readily available to accommodate a company’s specific requirements and applications.


Smurfit Kappa Bag-in-Box at the London Wine Fair 2016

Smurfit Kappa box

Smurfit Kappa will showcase its large range of packaging solutions and expertise for wine at the London Wine Fair from May 3-5. The London Wine Fair is a yearly exhibition held in London, United Kingdom, where more than 700 exhibitors from across the globe showcase 13,000 wines. It is one of the world’s leading wine trade events and it welcomes a wine trade audience of over 14,000 every year. Kevin Heath,

Kevin Heath, the Bag-in-Box sales manager for the United Kingdom and Ireland, explains “The concept of wine by the glass is gaining momentum in the United Kingdom. Consumers are looking for alternatives to glass bottles and the Bag-in-Box® offers possibilities to drink by the glass – at home or outside. That’s also why Bag-in-Box® wine is growing in the on-trade industry; with the opening of exclusively Bag-in-Box® wine pubs and a broader offer Bag-in-Box® wines in restaurants. It is a segment that we need to keep on exploiting.”

While Bag-in-Box® improves the shelf-life of the wine – thanks to high-quality barrier bags-, it is also a cost-saving alternative and undeniably an eco-friendly packaging with a low carbon footprint. Smurfit Kappa Bag-in-Box has a long expertise in Bag-in-Box® packaging solutions and relentlessly works to be at the vanguard of innovation to offer performing products that meet today’s production standards.

The Smurfit Kappa Bag-in-Box team will be at your disposal on from May 3 to May 5, 2016, at stand n°J24 in the Olympia London.


The Secret Sauce Behind the Paxxal Pallet

Following a materials development period that has spanned a decade, Indiana-based Paxxal Inc. has licensed a manufacturer in Saudi Arabia to rotationally mold its pallets — which are made from high-density polyethylene and silica. Read more at Plastics News.