Representatives of Australia and New Zealand's plastic fabrication industry have established a new association, Plastic Fabricators ANZ, to focus on promoting quality design and manufacturing.
PFANZ was established by a group of industry participants wanting to ensure those working in Australia and New Zealand's plastic fabricating industries are properly represented.
Gavin Kelly, managing director of Brisbane, Australia-based Islex Australia Pty. Ltd., is PFANZ's inaugural president.
He said there is “a strong will” within the group to differentiate quality industrial fabricators that design and manufacture to globally recognized standards from those who do not.
“[Corporate] failures have highlighted how important this basic element of the process is and the group feels so strongly about it we have made adherence to, and use of, recognized standards a cornerstone requirement of membership,” he said.
PFANZ held its first general meeting in late May in Melbourne at Ausplas, held every three years to showcase plastics equipment and technology.
Leisa Dolan, CEO of the Brisbane-based Association of Rotational Molders Australasia Inc., was appointed PFANZ secretary.
“A major priority is to engage the design and engineering industry to begin establishing a wider understanding of the importance of relevant standards,” Dolan said. “Our launch at Ausplas allows us to increase that awareness immediately.”
PFANZ has been financially supported by Dotmar Engineering Plastic Products Pty. Ltd., a Melbourne-based leading importer and distributor of engineering thermoplastics, PU and conveyor components; and Mulford International Pty. Ltd. of Sydney, one of the largest plastic sheet and film distributors in the Asia Pacific.
Although the Melbourne-based Plastics and Chemicals Industries Association is Australia's peak industry body, many smaller bodies have been founded to represent members operating in specific niche markets within the plastics industry.
Lex Edmond, president of the Society of Plastic Engineers Australia-New Zealand, said SPE branches exist worldwide and he sees a need to establish an Asia-Pacific branch.
Edmond said no group, apart from SPE, which organizes technical and networking events for industry professionals, exists as a “go to” resource for technical information on plastics. “We aim to provide scientific and engineering knowledge to our members,” he said.
SPE ANZ serves different functions than PACIA, which was formed in 1994 through the merger of the Plastics Industry Association, the Australian Chemical Industry Council and the Chemical Importers and Exporters Council of Australia.
“PACIA represents the chemical industry as well as plastics. It serves as more of a lobby group that discusses major issues facing the plastics and chemical sectors, like climate change and recycling,” Edmond said.
A PACIA spokesman declined Plastics News' request for an interview.