Michigan Packaging Company of Mason Receives State Award for Outstanding Safety & Health Record

Contact: Mario L. Morrow 517-373-9280

April 29, 2011 - Michigan Packaging Company of Mason received the Michigan Voluntary Protection Program (MVPP) Rising Star Award for workplace safety and health excellence today from the Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration (MIOSHA). The MIOSHA program is part of the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA).

"We are proud to welcome Michigan Packaging Company into this exceptional group of Michigan MVPP companies," said Steve Arwood, LARA Deputy Director. "Your dedication to safety and health excellence while providing high-caliber packaging products sends a strong message to all employers that worker protection is a sound business decision."

MIOSHA Director Doug Kalinowski presented the MVPP Rising Star Award to Matt Barnes, General Manager; Jamie Sleight, EHS Coordinator; and the Safety and Health Committee. First and second shift employees attended the ceremony and luncheon. Corporate officials and MIOSHA representatives were on hand to recognize employees and management on their outstanding achievement.

The Michigan Voluntary Protection Program (MVPP) Rising Star Award is given to companies that have an outstanding safety and health management system in place and have the desire and commitment to achieve the highest level, the Michigan Star Award. Only employers with the best safety and health programs are eligible for the MVPP Program. The company received MIOSHA's Michigan Safety and Health Achievement Recognition Program (SHARP) Award in 2009.

"The whole team at Michigan Packaging is extremely honored to receive this recognition from the state of Michigan. We have worked very close with the MIOSHA team over the years and feel fortunate to have them as our partner on this most important journey," said Barnes. "Personal commitment towards safety is the very definition of every member on the Michigan Packaging team. This recognition is an important milestone and confirms the focus that this team possesses."

MVPP Rising Star sites must have incidence rates below the Michigan average for three years. The incidence rates at Michigan Packaging are well below the industry average for their NAICS code 322211 − Corrugated and Solid Fiber Box Manufacturing. Their total case incidence rate (TCIR) was 0.7 in 2007, 0.0 in 2008, and 1.8 in 2009 − compared to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) Michigan industry average of 4.2 in 2007, and 3.5 in 2008 and 2009. The total day's away/restricted cases (DART) rate was 0.0 in 2007 and 2008, and 1.8 in 2009 − compared to the BLS industry average of 2.3 in 2007, and 2.0 in 2008 and 2009.

"National VPP sites experience 60 to 80 percent less lost work day injuries than would be expected of an average site in their industry," said Kalinowski. "Not only does the MVPP program significantly reduce injuries and illnesses - it also has a tremendous impact on the bottom line."

Michigan Packaging produces corrugated sheets and specialized high-impact graphic litho laminated sheets. The MIOSHA review team − Doug Kimmel, Team Leader and CET MVPP Specialist; Deb Gundry, CET Senior Safety Consultant; and Gregg Grubb, Senior Industrial Hygienist − conducted 17 formal and 19 informal interviews during the site visit. The review team examined each of the required elements of their safety and health management system and found the majority to be consistent with MVPP standards.

The review team recommended improvements in the areas of training, employee involvement, worksite analysis, and contractor training. The facility has several goals to move them forward to Star recognition.

The management team at Michigan Packaging makes every effort to provide a safe and healthy work environment. Some of the company's areas of excellence include: 
  • Education and experience requirements for electrical workers. 
  • Information for each chemical used in the workplace is included on the hazardous chemical inventory list. 
  • An intensive safety program for the company's over-the-road truck drivers. 
  • An open door policy that truly embraces the open door concept and communication among employees at all levels.


Michigan Packaging Company employs 113 workers and is a corrugated sheet feeder. They produce a wide variety of packaging products while offering sustainable packaging strategies that are designed to optimize materials and energy.

Michigan Packaging is one of five companies that make up CorrChoice, a family of corrugated sheet feeders serving the Midwest and Southeast regions of the U.S. CorrChoice companies offer unique services and products that help their customers be more successful in the markets they serve. In turn, CorrChoice is a subsidiary of Greif, Inc., a world leader in industrial packaging and services.

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