Like a chemical trade show, the PPMA Show hosts leading suppliers of the latest equipment for chemical processing. The range of machinery covers manufacturing, transformation, refinement, handling and packing. Visitors are able to hear about current trends and innovations, and to assess the benefits that new equipment could make for their businesses.

If you are involved in planning and decision-making about the future of a chemical processing business, or if you need a clear view of developments and opportunities in the industry, we recommend you stay in touch with PPMA. Until the 2024 show comes around, the PPMA Show website is an invaluable resource for connecting with suppliers of equipment and bespoke solutions for chemical processing plants.

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Which industries use chemical processing equipment?

Chemical processing is an essential part of the manufacture of very wide-ranging product categories such as pharmaceuticals, soaps, detergents, cosmetics, food, beverages, veterinary, e-liquids, inks, and adhesives.

The history of commercial chemical processing goes back many hundreds of years, with notable landmarks such as the production of sulphuric acid in 1736, rubber in 1839 and aspirin in 1899. Today it is estimated that there are more than 70,000 chemical products available to consumers and industry.  



Chemical processing equipment falls into broad categories of material handling, thermal processing, agglomeration and packing. In all cases, equipment can be manual, semi-automatic or fully automatic. As with all modern processing and packaging systems, configurations can include accurate control and recording measurements to ensure that the system runs efficiently and that any faults are reported in real time. 


Material handling machines for chemical processing

The design of installations for handling chemical products involves full consideration of the characteristics of different products. The chemicals market includes solids, pellets, powders, liquids and gasses. Temperature can be a key issue for maintaining product integrity, and in the case of toxic or combustible materials, safety considerations are paramount.      

The types of materials handling equipment supplied by PPMA members include:


Thermal processing for chemicals

Heating, cooling and refrigeration are key elements of chemical processing and packaging installations. The transformation of core materials through hot and cold temperatures is an essential part of the production, handling and packaging capabilities of most chemical processing plants.

The range of thermal processing equipment available to plant designers and specifiers include:


Agglomeration of chemicals

Base chemical materials come in different forms which frequently need to be transformed into marketable products which are easier to handle, process and pack. For example, loose powders can be made into pellets or tablets and tiny granules can be combined to form larger, more manageable, particles.

The equipment needed to transform chemicals into larger elements include:


Chemical packing

Equipment for packing chemicals is designed around the different requirements of specific

chemical products. The key attributes of the product – liquid, gas, pellet or powder – dictate the kind of packaging required. The principal options are bottles, ampoules, vials, syringes, aerosols, cylinders, blister packs and pouches.

Packing equipment can be integrated into a processing and production line, or can be a standalone function.   


Chemical processing safety

Safety in chemical processing is a fundamental responsibility in the management of production and packaging installations. The toxicity of various products necessitates zero or minimal manual handling, and where it is essential, the working methodology has to protect staff rigorously.

For automated environments, the safety of employees is equally important, and it is essential that chemical processing plants follow every aspect of health and safety legislation and best practice.


Monitoring and reporting for chemical processing plants

Monitoring and reporting systems need to be in place in all chemical processing enterprises. Systems need to identify any faults and malfunctions in equipment to ensure the safety of operators. There may also be issues to address on procedures at the place of work.

While safety remains a primary consideration, effective reporting can also provide key insights into efficiency and productivity. In modern chemical processing plants, digital control systems can give real time feedback on missed targets and any problems with quality standards. The most effective monitoring systems often combine contemporary technology with human assessments of any issues which arise. 


How do you choose chemical processing machinery?

The initial question for business owners and investors is whether to choose an all-in-one turnkey system, or to opt for individual units. Further assessments involve the availability of appropriate staff, and whether full or partial automation is the best solution.

The issue of flexibility should also be high on investors’ agendas. In a changing world, the ability to switch from bulk processing to smaller production volumes can create genuine competitive advantage, as long as the equipment can be rearranged to handle different requirements. Further flexibility, such as being able to handle different types of material can also help to provide a better return on investment.   

The quality of equipment is a further consideration. The best equipment has the least maintenance down time, and is overall more efficient. Higher investment costs may need to be balanced by overall productivity measures, and the possibility of making higher margins on better quality products. On top of reliability, consideration also needs to be given to energy efficiency.

Another key issue is the level of innovation featured in the equipment specified. Innovative machinery can be a key to competitive advantage if it offers better functionality such as speed, reliability and flexibility. However, to minimise risk, innovative machinery needs to have extensive test and pilot credentials.



  • Engineers and plant managers who need to be up to date with new developments in machinery and processes for chemical products.  
  • Decision-makers in businesses which supply chemical processing equipment. 
  • Senior personnel keen to develop first-class networking opportunities


Chemical Processing Equipment


  • Explore specific items of equipment and turnkey solutions
  • Improve the efficiency of your chemical processing plant
  • Generate new ideas and new thinking to strengthen your business
  • Put the date in your diary - PPMA SHOW 2024, 24-26 September 

The PPMA Show offers everything you need to know about innovations in the sector. The show takes place from 24-26 September 2024 at the Birmingham NEC. We look forward to seeing you there.




You will learn a lot and find inspiring ideas. In our PPMA Seminar, you will find a line-up of thought leaders sharing their knowledge and expertise in a series of break-out sessions.  And opening the show, we have a high-profile industry speaker who will deliver an inspiring, insightful address.

You will meet over 350 exhibitors and be able to see and buy machinery to help you develop your business.  Live, real-time demonstrations of the latest production and manufacturing technology will enable decision-makers fully to assess the features and benefits of a range of machinery.

You will engage and connect with industry peers, potential suppliers, and future customers.  There will be plenty of opportunities to network, so remember to look out for the dedicated meeting spaces located in and around the exhibition space.

  • Seeing new technology in action is the best way to prove its viability.  Do not miss the live, real-time demonstrations taking place throughout the show. 
  • We have really listened to your feedback.  This year’s PPMA Show offers even more opportunities to network with like-minded business contacts.  You will find dedicated meeting areas around the exhibition space. We have introduced easier ways to meet and share ideas with other attendees, so look out for these.
  • The high-profile PPMA Group Industry Awards will take place alongside the main event. On the first evening, there will be a dazzling ceremony and gala dinner. With some exciting new announcements, you cannot afford to miss it.