VLB restructured its beverage packaging unit

The VLB Testing Laboratory for Packaging was integrated into the Research Institute for Management and Beverage Logistics (FIM). From 1 August 2021, FIM is managed in dual leadership. Head of Returnable Systems and Testing Laboratory for Packaging is Dipl.-Ing. Ingo Pankoke. The Event Management remain the proven responsibility of Dipl.-Ing. Norbert Heyer.

Packaging is and will remain a strategic success factor – also for beer and beverages. In addition to the pure protective function and marketing factors, logistical requirements must increasingly be taken into account when developing and handling beverage packaging. With its Testing Laboratory for Packaging, VLB has been offering specialized tests for many types of packaging and packaging aids since 1972. Until recently, this Testing Laboratory was located at the VLB Research Institute for Beer and Beverage Production. As part of personnel and strategic adjustments, the Testing Laboratory for Packaging was now integrated into the Research Institute for Management and Beverage Logistics (FIM) as of 1 August 2021. 
Since its foundation in 2001, FIM has dealt intensively with questions of empties management, disposable/reusable systems and the traceability of load units. With the integration of the Testing Laboratory for Packaging into the Logistics Department, importance of beverage packaging in logistics shall be emphasized. 

Strategic development
Head of the new FIM unit „Research Returnable Systems and Testing Laboratory for Packaging“ was transferred to Ingo Pankoke. The graduate brewery and industrial engineer has been working as a research assistant at the VLB since 2001. Here, he has made a name for himself in the industry, especially in research and development for the optimization of reusable systems. In addition, he is a lecturer at the VLB brewmaster classes. In the future, Pankoke will also further strengthen the strategic development of the Testing Laboratory for Packaging. As before, the management of the Testing Laboratory itself will remain in the proven hands of M.Eng., Dipl.-Ing. (FH) Susan Dobrick, who has held this position since 2016.
Norbert Heyer, who will lead the institute together with Ingo Pankoke, will continue to be responsible for the other focal points of FIM's work, including load security, the truck FIN database and the event organization of the VLB.

New impetus
„We would like to reorganize and further expand our activities in the field of beverage packaging,“ says VLB Managing Director Dr. Josef Fontaine, explaining this measure. „In the future, this important topic will be increasingly settled across department, namely between technology and logistics.“ His Managing Director colleague Gerhard Andreas Schreiber adds: „We are sure that with this bundling we will be able to optimally deal with the current core topics and challenges of our industry. In particular, we would like to give new impetus to research in the packaging segment in our company.“

Neue Doppelspitze FIM-VP
Ingo Pankoke (l.) leads the new FIM unit. Norbert Heyer (r.) is responsible for the original FIM work priorities. Susan Dobrick (M.) continues to be head of the Testing Laboratory