Pro Carton Opens 2018 Awards for Young Designers

Pro Carton, the European Association of Carton and Cartonboard manufacturers, has launched its 2018 Young Designers Awards. The Awards, now in its eighth year, offers winners a chance to see the Metsä Board Mill in Finland first-hand, as well as attend practical training with Mayr-Melnhof Packaging.

Helping to shape the future of cartonboard and sustainable packaging, the awards call on young designers to put forward a packaging concept in one of four categories for a chance to walk away as winner of its Creative Cartonboard Packaging for Food & Drink, Creative Cartonboard Packaging for All Non-Food Products, Creative Cartonboard Ideas and, new for 2018, Save the Planet awards.

The Save the Planet Award challenges young designers to demonstrate how, through the innovative use of design and materials, packaging can reduce plastic waste. According to the European Commission, Europe produces 26 million tonnes of plastic waste every year, of which less than 30% is recycled and the rest put in landfills or incinerated. Cartonboard is renewable, recyclable and biodegradable so is an economically and ecologically balanced packaging medium and the Save the Planet category at the 2018 Awards will recognise those designers that provide a solution and viable application for it, reducing the unnecessary use of plastic in packaging design.

The popular Creative Cartonboard Packaging category will return, now spilt into two categories namely Creative Cartonboard Packaging for Food & Drink and Creative Cartonboard Packaging for All Non-Food Products. The new categories will not only present more opportunities to win, but will allow entries to be entered by product type.

Also returning for the 2018 Awards, the Creative Cartonboard Ideas category will give entrants an opportunity to explore creative uses of cartonboard for non-packaging applications. Previous entries have included bowties, window blinds and coat hangers – all made from cartonboard.

Award finalists – who will be announced in August – will be invited, along with their tutors, to the Gala Awards dinner and ceremony on the 20th September 2018 at the European Carton Makers Association (ECMA) Congress in Riga, Latvia. Expenses for the trip, including travel costs, two nights’ accommodation, attendance at the elegant gala dinner and an evening out in Riga will be covered by Pro Carton.

Speaking about the Awards, Tony Hitchin, General Manager, Pro Carton, said, “We are delighted to announce the Pro Carton Young Designers Awards 2018 is now open for young designers to submit their innovative packaging concepts. The Awards is recognised as one of Europe’s leading annual young talent competitions for packaging design. Previous finalists and winners have gone on to achieve great success within the industry and we’re looking forward to seeing how tomorrow’s generation of designers responds to the packaging design challenges faced by the industry today. By exclusively focusing on cartonboard design, we hope to encourage and inspire young designers at design schools and universities across Europe to create new packaging concepts that will protect the future of our planet.”
All entries should be submitted by the 17th May by European design students, who have not completed their studies before the summer of 2018. Entries must be submitted with proof of students’ current place of education including lecturer details. For more information on the Awards and terms and conditions for entry, please visit

Further support is also available to Design Schools and Universities including complimentary cartonboard for concept samples, providing a hands-on learning experience for students. Pro Carton members are also available for school visits and workshops to educate designers on the benefits that cartonboard and cartons offer through design, technology, production and marketing.

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