Matt Rodgers receives 2022 MSU Packaging Alumni Association Innovation Award
Matt Rodgers received the 2022 MSU Packaging Alumni Association Innovation Award at the School of Packaging Celebration on Apr. 19.
Matt Rodgers received the 2022 MSU Packaging Alumni Association (PAA) Innovation Award at the School of Packaging Celebration on Apr. 19.
The PAA Innovation Award is given to an Michigan State University (MSU) School of Packaging graduate who has made a specific, definable contribution to the advancement of package technology. This contribution can range from the invention of a new consumer product/package to a unique manufacturing process or to significant environmental stewardship. Candidates possess integrity and character to positively reflect and enhance the prestige of the School of Packaging and the packaging profession.
Rodgers’ professional packaging career began as an intern at Gerber Products Company in 2004 as part of the MSU School of Packaging program before graduating in 2006. After graduation he accepted a full-time position at Gerber Products Company (now Nestle) in 2007.
His career at Nestle has afforded him the opportunity to work on a variety of food packaging technologies as well as take on increasing roles of responsibility. Early on, his focus was on optimization of glass and metal packaging for baby food purees for cost optimization and regulatory compliance.
Rodgers led the introduction of spouted pouches for Nestle in 2010 which has since grown to be a major part of the product portfolio. Leveraging his experience in this new package category, he then led consumer-driven pouch packaging design initiatives that have been rolled out across the Americas, Europe and China. This includes development and introduction of a patented closure function and design in 2017. His role in the package category has evolved to include global support to teams and factories assisting with innovation initiatives across the globe.
This background of innovation in the spouted pouch category provided the right framework for development of a sustainable baby food spouted pouch. He led a global project team that spanned six countries, two factories and multiple time zones. After more than two years of experimenting and innovation, the team overcame the last of the challenges and successfully introduced the innovation into two key markets in 2020.
Rodgers looks forward to future opportunities to continue developing his innovative spirit!