The event took place from 11-12 April in Tehran.
Harbinder Kathuria, Sidel's Regional Commercial Director for Greater Middle East (GME), presented at the two-day conference. He highlighted the importance of product safety and integrity, and the role that aseptic bottling and filling has in that process. During his presentation, Mr Kathuria spoke of the growth of PET use in the Iranian market. With its population of almost 80 million, strong middle class consumerism and the associated purchasing power that this brings, Iran is experiencing increased demand for water, juices and other beverage categories. In the soft drinks sector Iran represents 16% of the total volume for GME, with growth of a further 2 billion litres forecast from 2016 to 2020.
He also covered the trends and innovations that are driving the market and how product safety is a fundamental requirement in beverage processing and packaging. Mr Kathuria outlined Sidel's commitment in this area, discussing barrier packaging solutions in PET and the Sidel Predis™ dry preform decontamination technology, which has seen over 20 billion bottles produced globally by over 90 systems that are currently in use. He spoke of how Predis is now available for the company's latest generation of modular Sidel Matrix™ blowing and Combi equipment: the new Sidel Matrix Combi Predis FMa gives beverage producers the benefits of cost-efficiency and an improved environmental footprint. Among the more recent customers recognising the added value that Predis offers is Jussara, a
Brazilian dairy producer. The company's UHT milk is standing out on the shelves in a market dominated by carton as it is packaged in PET bottles produced on a complete Sidel aseptic line.
Commenting on the participation of Sidel in the Iran PET 2016 conference, Mr Kathuria said - "We were honoured to be invited to speak at this prestigious event. We have been involved in supporting customers in Iran for over 30 years, helping them lower their total cost of ownership through our equipment and service offering. The conference provided an excellent opportunity to discuss the growth and potential in what is a dynamic market and how the latest developments in aseptic bottling technology will contribute to this growth."
The conference was presented at the Parsian Asadi Hotel and saw the speakers and visiting delegates discussing a wide range of beverage and packaging industry issues as the market continues to evolve. These included the feedstock advantage and how that affects the resin trade shift; the implications for innovation as converters set-up operations in Iran; and the impact of foreign beverage and food packaging brands entering the market. Mr Kathuria concluded - "When markets are growing, it is more important than ever to be introducing new and innovative PET bottling solutions to meet changing consumer trends."
 Figures from Euromonitor, February 2016