10 Things To Do at NPE2024 When The Plastics Show Returns After 6 Years

April 25, 2024

After a six-year hiatus due to COVID, NPE2024: The Plastics Show will return May 6-10 at the Orange County Convention Center (OCCC) in Orlando. When the triennial trade show and conference was last held in 2018, NPE2018: The Plastic Show attracted more than 55,000 attendees and 2,182 exhibitors covering 1.1 million net square feet of exhibit space at OCCC.


Owned by the Plastics Industry Association (PLASTICS), the trade show supports the entire plastics supply chain, including equipment suppliers, material suppliers, processors and recyclers, representing more than 1 million workers in the $548 billion U.S. industry.

Previously produced by an in-house team, PLASTICS inked a deal in 2022 with association event management company Smithbucklin and its company, 360 Live Media, to sell and market NPE2024: The Plastics Show through 2027.

This year’s show is on track to draw more than 2,000 exhibiting companies, covering more than 1 million sq. ft. of exhibit space. Despite skipping a show cycle in 2021, event organizers told us that as of April 16 they are on pace to hit 2018 attendance levels.

Here’s a preview of 10 things to do at the upcoming event:

  1. Explore the Sustainability Hub showcasing the industry's commitment to the circular economy. NPE’s goal is to divert 100% of the plastic waste generated during the event from landfills by utilizing the onsite outdoor NPE recycling center the OCCC. 
  2. Visit the live recycling and sustainability demos across 10,500 sq. ft. of space.
  3. Attend 30 education sessions in the Recycling & Sustainability Zone in partnership with RE|FOCUS.
  4. Check out the largest gathering of bioplastics companies in the U.S., with more than 30 suppliers. PLASTICS will release its 2024 Bioplastics Market Watch Report on May 8 during NPE.
  5. Learn from keynote speakers like FANUC America Corp. President and CEO Michael Cicco and BASF Corp. Chair and CEO Michael Heinz. Heinz will deliver a keynote address titled “Our Plastics Journey: The Road to a Sustainable Future,” in which he will address the industry’s challenges, emphasizing the importance of collaboration along the value chain and offering insights into the future. Find additional details in BASF’s news release at the following link: BASF at NPE 2024: A key pitstop along the plastics journey 
  6. Join networking events like the NPE Opening Party, Women in Plastics Breakfast and FliP & SIP Reception.
  7. Attend industry briefings covering trends and technologies in automotive, construction, consumer goods and more.
  8. Experience live demonstrations of  OPC UA for machine-to-machine data exchange.
  9. Visit the Podcast Point to listen to podcasts like PMM, Sustainable Packaging and PlastChicks.
  10. Attend expanded exhibitor press conferences with 180+ new products debuting at NPE2024.
Orange County Convention Center
Orange County Convention Center


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Overview: The award-winning Orange County Convention Center (OCCC) goes the extra mile to make every day extraordinary by offering customer service excellence and industry-leading partnerships. From their dedicated in-house Rigging team to their robust Exhibitor Services, The Center of Hospitality brings your imagination to life by helping you host unforgettable meetings and events. With more than 2 million square feet of exhibit space, world-class services and a dream destination, we are committed to making even the most ambitious conventions a reality. In October 2023, the Orange County Board of County Commissioners voted to approve allocating Tourist Development Tax funding for the $560 million Phase 5A completion of the OCCC. The Convention Way Grand Concourse project will include enhancements to the North-South Building, featuring an additional 60,000 square feet of meeting space, an 80,000- square-foot ballroom and new entry to the North-South Building along Convention Way. “We are thrilled to begin work on completing our North-South Building which will allow us to meet the growing needs of our clients,” said OCCC Executive Director Mark Tester. “As an economic driver for the community, this project will provide the Center with connectivity and meeting space to host more events and continue to infuse the local economy with new money and expanding business opportunities.” Amenities: The Center of Hospitality goes above and beyond by offering world-class customer service and industry-leading partnerships. From the largest convention center Wi-Fi network to custom LAN/WAN design, the Center takes pride in enhancing exhibitor and customer experience.  The OCCC is the exclusive provider of electricity (24-hour power at no additional cost), aerial rigging and lighting, water, natural gas and propane, compressed air, and cable TV services. Convenience The Center is at the epicenter of the destination, with an abundance of hotels, restaurants, and attractions within walking distance. Pedestrian bridges connect both buildings to more than 5,200 rooms and is within a 15-minute drive from the Orlando International Airport. The convenience of the location goes hand-in-hand with top notch service to help meet an event’s every need. Gold Key Members The OCCC’s Gold Key Members represent the best of the best when it comes to exceptional service and exclusive benefits for clients, exhibitors and guests. The Center’s Gold Key memberships with Universal Orlando Resort, SeaWorld Orlando and Walt Disney World greatly enhance meeting planner and attendee experiences offering world-renowned venues, immersive experiences and creative resources for their events. OCCC Events: This fiscal year, the OCCC is projected to host 168 events, 1.7 million attendees, and $2.9 billion in economic impact.  The Center’s top five events during their 2022-2023 fiscal year included:  AAU Jr. National Volleyball Championships 2023 200,000 Attendees $257 Million in Economic Impact MEGACON 2023 160,000 Attendees $205 Million in Economic Impact Open Championship Series 2023 69,500 Attendees $89 Million in Economic Impact Sunshine Classic 2023 42,000 Attendees $54 Million in Economic Impact Premiere Orlando 2023 42,000 Attendees $108 Million in Economic Impact