Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre (MCEC) Acknowledges the Traditional Owners of Narrm, the Wurundjeri Woi Wurrung people of the Kulin Nation. We pay our respects to their Elders past and present, and to Elders of all First Nations communities that visit MCEC.


A Sustainable Gala Dinner for the APPMA Awards of Excellence

The Gala Awards Ceremony for the APPMA Awards of Excellence took place at MCEC on Wednesday 27 March 2019 and showcased an innovative approach to a truly sustainable gala dinner.

Cardboard, an integral material in packaging, was used throughout the room, from the impressive entrance feature to intricate decorations. All cardboard and paper products were created from a combination of responsibly sourced kraft liner and 100% recycled paper.

Table centrepiece decorations featured recycled copper, with lines referencing barcodes, while the lighting was all low-energy LED. Even the plants used were returned to the nursery after the evening, and floral arrangements not taken home by guests were donated to a local nursing home.

The three-course meal was chosen to deliberately reduce food waste. The menu was designed in partnership with MCEC’s kitchen team and Yume - the first online marketplace for surplus food- utilising top-quality, brand-name excess food that may have otherwise been discarded.

MCEC Chief Operating Officer Leighton Wood said the event showcases how MCEC can deliver events that go beyond a tick-box approach to sustainability.

“We take our sustainability credentials seriously at MCEC and are committed to working with our customers to deliver innovative solutions that not only ensure a better result for the environment but enhance the overall event.”

APPMA Chairman Mark Dingley said from the bubble-wrap ‘red-carpet’ entrance right through to the food on the menu, every element of the evening has ‘sustainability’ at its core.

“This reflects both how intrinsic sustainability is to the operation of our industries and our commitment to it.”