Gian De Belder
Technical Director - R&D Packaging Sustainability
Procter & Gamble
Gian is a technical director and packaging technologist at Procter & Gamble (P&G), one of the largest consumer packaged goods companies in the world. In his 20+ year career at P&G, Gian has helped drive R&D into sustainable packaging across the company. With experience in upstream technologies, sustainable resins and EU funding projects, Gian has been involved in developing key partnerships across the value chain and managing open innovation through P&G’s Connect & Develop Programme.
To help drive cross-sector collaboration, Gian is a board member of Petcore Europe (the association representing the complete PET value chain in Europe), next to being very active in Plastic Recyclers Europe’s Recyclass platform (chair of advisory board and steering board member). Gian is also active in other cross value chain associations such as Alliance to End Plastic Waste (AEPW), Ceflex, and others. He is also a regular speaker at Packaging Conferences.
Recently, Gian has been initiating and leading the 3-year Pioneer project “HolyGrail” on the standardisation of markers/ watermarks in packaging (barcode for recycling), to increase efficiencies in high-quality sorting and to strive for higher recycling rates, as part of the Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s New Plastics Economy initiative. This project received multiple awards (eg Packaging Europe’s 2019 Sustainability Awards, 2020 Edie Sustainabiliy award, WPO Worldstar Winner 2021, PAC Global Leadership awards 2021, next to some other awards. He also ensured the continuation of this project into establishment of HolyGrail 2.0 (100+ members, Gian chairs the Leadership team), facilitated by AIM (European Brands Association), to proof the viability of digital watermark technologies and business case at scale.
Gian has also been official juror for multiple packaging awards: PackTheFuture 2018, Dow DuPont Packaging Innovation Awards (2018), 2020 Plastics Recycling Awards and Packaging Europe’s Sustainability Awards (2018+2019+2020). He has been elected finalist for the 2018 and 2019 “EU Plastics Recycling Ambassador” (from Plastic Recyclers Europe) and actually received this title in 2019.
Gian is 45 years old and holds a degree in Polymer & Composites Engineering from Leuven University. He was born in Belgium and is married with 2 children. He is a big fan of sports (running/ squash/ padel/ cycling) and travel.