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Reusable Packaging Association Announces the 2023 Excellence in Reusable Packaging Award Winners

Award Ceremony to Take Place September 12 at 3 pm PST at PACK EXPO Las Vegas in the RPA Pavilion

Washington, D.C. (August 23, 2023) The Reusable Packaging Association (RPA) has announced the winners of the esteemed 2023 Excellence in Reusable Packaging Awards.  The awards feature a winner in each of three categories, Reusable System, Design Innovation, and Product Technology.  The three winners in 2023 are OK Produce for Reusable System, Schaefer Plastics North America, LLC, for Design Innovation, and the Rehrig Pacific Company for Product Technology.

OK Produce, a fresh produce wholesaler based out of Fresno, California, wins the Reusable System award for their implementation of a plastic pallet program in the distribution of perishable foods to their network of customers.  OK Produce has introduced the reusable pallet program to 90% of their customer base, achieving cost-reductions, operational efficiencies, and solid waste reductions.

Schaefer Plastics North America, a manufacturer of reusable transport packaging products, wins the Design Innovation award for their electrostatic discharge (ESD) bulk bin.  The Grounder™ is a 48-inch-wide x 45-inch-long x 45-inch-tall plastic molded bin with metal plungers that protect shipped electronic parts against electrostatic contamination while reducing expendable packaging materials.

Rehrig Pacific, a supplier of integrated sustainable solutions for logistics and delivery customers, including environmental waste and recycling, supply chain, and direct store delivery, wins the Product Technology award for their Vision Object Recognition (VOR) system. VOR offers warehouse customers an advanced technology solution featuring integrated components such as smart pallets, artificial intelligence, and machine learning to improve material handling, recordkeeping, inventory tracking, and quality control.

Introduced more than a decade ago, the Excellence Award initiative maintains its steadfast momentum recognizing visionaries and commercial successes within the reusable transport packaging industry.  The prestigious awards identify primary (end) user companies and suppliers who increasingly find new opportunities to innovate and advance reusable packaging in the supply chain. Award submissions are assessed by an independent panel of judges and are scored based on narration of the reuse opportunity, demonstration of business or economic improvements, and quantification of environmental impacts.

RPA would like to recognize and thank our expert judges for the 2023 awards:

  • Rick LeBlanc, editor, Reusable Packaging News
  • Laszlo Horvath, associate professor and director, Center for Packaging and Unit Load Design, Virginia Tech
  • Michelle Fay, program manager, StopWaste
  • Ziynet Boz, assistant professor of Sustainable Food Systems Engineering, University of Florida

About the Excellence Awards:

The RPA Excellence in Reusable Packaging Awards recognize companies and organizations who have developed and implemented innovative and measurable reusable packaging solutions in a business-to-business supply chain. The Reusable System award recognizes primary user companies and associated product suppliers that have developed and implemented measurable reusable packaging solutions in a business-to-business supply chain. The Design Innovation award celebrates the commercial use of a cutting-edge product that has led to a benefit in the market.  The Product Technology award salutes the deployment of smart automated systems with reusable packaging. The annual award program is celebrating its 12th year, and will honor the award recipients at an awards ceremony on September 12th at 3:00 pm, at the close of the RPA Learning Center at PACK EXPO Las Vegas.

About the Reusable Packaging Association (RPA)

RPA is a non-profit trade organization representing and promoting the common business interests of member suppliers and users of reusable packaging products and services.  RPA promotes the use and value of reusable transport packaging systems, which offer product quality, economic, and environmental benefits to supply chains. For more information, visit our website.




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