WIP UK was established in 2014 to back female employees in roles across the entire UK packaging supply chain, from design to manufacture, marketing and delivery.
The organisation considers diversity to be crucial to the industry’s future prosperity and works with a range of high-profile companies to promote the valuable contribution made by women.
WIP UK said Swanline’s sponsorship will boost the initiative’s efforts to restore gender equilibrium by enabling it to deliver more activities and events and provide collaborative networking opportunities that help women to gain the training and recognition they need to excel.
Joanna Stephenson, co-founder of WIP UK, said: “As in many sectors, the packaging field is largely male-dominated, meaning females often face an uphill career struggle.
“It is vital that the industry comes together to tackle this issue and Swanline’s support throws down the gauntlet to other companies who believe in offering equal access to all.”
Swanline Print Group chief executive Nick Kirby added: “At Swanline we are committed to driving positive change within the industry. As one of the largest employers in the UK, the print and packaging industry is behind others in terms of the gender imbalance, possibly due to its heritage.
“Attracting, retaining and developing more women will bring new dynamics and skillsets that will help drive the industry forward, which will be beneficial to us all.
“We felt it was important to sponsor this initiative as it offers training and support, which can only be a good thing for the industry and its future.
“You only have to tour major packaging organisations in the UK and look at those quoted on stock markets to see that there is clearly a gender imbalance.
“Women are clearly identifiable at the brand level and in roles typically associated with women, i.e. HR, customer service and marketing. However, technical, manufacturing and leadership roles are sorely lacking in female representation.”