IoPP Adds Two New Private Brand Categories to its AmeriStar Awards

The Institute of Packaging Professionals announces two new awards for its 2012 AmeriStar Package Awards competition.

The first addition is a new category—private label. This category is targeted to retailers and companies and their private-label brands. It will follow the same criteria that IoPP judges use to evaluate packaging in all other categories of the AmeriStar competition, from design appearance to sustainability factors to economical and creative use of materials.

Private label manufacturers may continue to enter as many of the different categories as they wish and compete against the national brands. National brands, however, will not be eligible to enter the private label category.

“A lot of companies are doing great work today in private label packaging, and this new award enables IoPP to recognize the best of the best,” says Jane Chase, IoPP Immediate Past Chair, who spearheads the AmeriStar program. “We also believe it will inspire more store brand companies to enter packages in the AmeriStar competition, which is right around the corner.”

The second award that IoPP is introducing is a special “Best in Show” award honoring a package that best integrates structural and graphic design in support of brand objectives. AmeriStar judges will bring forward from each category those packages that they feel best exemplify excellence in integrating structural and graphic design, to compete for this award. Design criteria that the judges will consider include benefits to consumers and retailers, enhancements in distribution, and improved functionality that entices consumers to think about a product in a new way.

“This award will be similar to our Sustainability and overall Best in Show awards,” Chase notes.

Adds Jim George, IoPP’s Director of Education: “These new awards are two great additional opportunities to compete for a prestigious honor that salutes the superb package design work that is being done among both national brands and in the private label industry.”

IoPP will begin putting out the call for AmeriStar entries in the fall. Judging will take place early in 2012.

For questions about the AmeriStar competition, please contact Carole Schiller at or 630-696-4006.

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Christopher Durham
Christopher Durham is the president of My Private Brand and the co-founder of The Vertex Awards. He is a strategist, author, consultant and retailer who built brands at Delhaize-owned Food Lion, and lead strategy and brand development for Lowe’s Home Improvement. He has consulted with retailers around the world on their private brand portfolios including: Family Dollar, Petco, Staples, Office Depot, Best Buy, Metro (Canada), TLW (Taiwan) and Hola (Taiwan). Durham has published five definitive books on private brands, including his first book, Fifty2: The My Private Brand Project. In 2017, he will debut his newest book, Vanguard: Vintage Originals, a visual tour of innovation and disruption in private brand going back to the mid-1800’s. Dynamic in his presentation while down to earth and frank in his opinions, he has presented at numerous conferences, including FUSE, The Dieline Conference, Packaging that Sells, Omnishopper and PLMA’a annual trade show in Chicago. Durham lives in Charlotte, NC with his wife, Laraine, and two daughters, Olivia and Sarah.