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In late July, we announced the creation of our new Networks, among them the Technology Network. We knew that, of the three new groups, this one would raise this logical question, especially given the fact that FPSA members provide solutions that begin at the reception of ingredients in the plant and cover components every step of the way up to primary packaging. Obviously, there’s LOTS of “technology” involved along in this process. So, which one(s) will the new Technology Network be dealing with?

Well, I’ve got two answers for that. The first answer is, in talks with members that have inquired about the Network, invariably they tend to push this discussion towards automation. This would seem to be the “technology” that members are most interested in. This makes sense when you consider that automation certainly is one of the most popular technologies for the trade show, especially on the customer side. Furthermore, all FPSA members are involved in it to one degree or another. So, if I were a betting person I’d say that this is probably one area that the Network is going to focus on, if not the first area.

And the second answer? Maybe I should have started with this one. It’s really not for staff to determine. The Technology Network, just like the other Networks and Councils, are going to chart their own course. The decision on what “defines” technology has not been decided by staff or the Board of Directors. It’s going to come from those same members who see the value in coming together and addressing common interest(s).

Will they choose automation? Who knows? Very possibly. How will they choose to address it, or any other issues? That too is for the Network to decide. It could be with surveys, white papers, webinars, selection of speakers for Annual Conference and PROCESS EXPO, and meet ups at other industry events. Who knows? But we look forward to finding out!

We’ll hold our first conference call in October to get started and the new members of the Network will be the ones to figure out how they want to define technology. If you’re interested in helping us do that while also expanding your network and continuing to build your resource base, please let Ann Marie know. Need to discuss it more? Feel free to call me any time – Dolores (703-663-1226)