The Regional Filter Colloquium took place in St Petersburg, Russia, on 26-27 May 2016.
This major conference gathers filter specialists and independent researchers and scientists from the laboratories of tobacco corporations and their suppliers to discuss not only matters of developing, making, and selling acetate tow and finished filter products, but also other subjects of importance to the industry. Besides increasingly tight tobacco market regulation, the industry is concerned about an overall decline in demand in virtually all markets, growth in popularity for electronic nicotine delivery systems, growing numbers of illegal products, and many other subjects. The previous Colloquium focused on slim and superslim cigarette formats demonstrating extraordinary growth in popularity in the Russian market and in some neighbouring countries. Responding to the dynamics of demand, the Solvay facility in Serpukhov, Russia, has recently launched an additional line for making acetate tow for filters for the segment.
The event began with a gala reception in the evening on 25 May at the Courtyard by Marriott hotel where the Colloquium took place. The next two days were filled by presentations and discussions and the evenings were used by the organisers to show the participants all the beauty of St Petersburg and visit the most fashionable restaurants in the city. Thus a gala dinner on 26 May was held at the Gimnaziya Club, the trendiest this spring in the “northern capital.”
Twelve in-depth presentations given by participants during the event working hours concerned not only manufacture which is close to the inviting company, though acetate tow and filters were the focus of attention, but also matters such as the making of special papers and films, quality assurance mechanisms, research and development, and overall trends in the tobacco market and its regulation. In particular, the editor-in-chief of Tabachny Magazin newspaper had been invited by Solvay to present the Colloquium with a picture of the Russian cigarette market and its regulation.
Effective discussion of a wide range of issues important to the industry and informal conversations during the rich entertainment programme became possible thanks to the perfect organisation of the event by the Solvay team. In the next two years the company will have several important events and anniversaries, including the 20th anniversary of manufacture in Russia (in Serpukhov), and friends and colleagues will gather together again. It is worthwhile noting that this unique experience of holding large-scale industry-wide conferences with an agenda going far beyond the narrow specialist interests of the organising company invariably enjoys everyone’s support and attention. Even as regional events, Solvay colloquiums gather hundreds of delegates from dozens of sector companies from many countries. The overwhelming majority of guests understandably represent cigarette companies, but a substantial number of suppliers to the industry also send their delegates. A Solvay Colloquium is always useful and never boring.
We wish the company the same success and growing interest in its products, specialists, and events ever in the future.