Glass Focus 2020

The winners of the Glass Focus Awards 2020 were announced as part of a virtual presentation on 12 November 2020.


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The winners

The awards themselves covered areas including product design, sustainability, health and safety, workforce development and more.

Sustainable Practice

Briquettes project by Ardagh Glass

In an effort to achieve 100% recyclability of post-consumer glass, Ardagh Glass, in collaboration with CelSian glass technologists, Wright Engineering (Wrights) and Sheffield Hallam University (SHU), has developed a method to take the fine particle glass rejected during the glass recycling process and turn them into briquettes. 

By repurposing materials that otherwise would have been sent to aggregate or landfill and turning them into new glass packaging, this reduces the energy and emissions in the furnace and also 
improves the environmental impact of glass packaging manufacture.

The judges said: 

“It was fantastic to see a project like this with a university, a supplier and a glass maker working together and getting to the point where material that would have gone to aggregate or other uses can be recovered and effectively put back into the furnace.” 

Sponsored by:
Glass Futures

Glass Futures logo

Design of the Year – Container

Carbon Sake by Stoelzle Flaconnage Ltd

Combining two elements of Japanese culture in the traditional rice wine spirit Sake and Yakisugi, the traditional carbonisation of wood, Stoelzle Flaconnage have created the stunning jet-black concept bottle Carbon Sake which took home the Design of the year – container prize. 

The judges on this year’s panel were impressed with the calibre of entries in this category and ultimately chose the Carbon Sake bottle as the winner after being impressed with how Stoelzle incorporated elements of Japanese culture into the minimalist design of the bottle, the unique lever and cork closure and striking colour of the bottle. 

Sponsored by:
Packaging News

Apprentice of the Year

Erin Miller of Encirc

Since joining Encirc as a graduate to work in batch and furnace, Erin Miller has already made a significant impact at the business and contributed towards pioneering projects in the glass sector. 

Erin has recently been working as a Project Manager at Glass Futures supporting the industrial fuel switching project with her valuable knowledge and expertise contributing towards Encirc’s bio-diesel trial at their Derrylin factory. 

Alongside her work for Encirc and Glass Futures Erin has participated in Encirc’s Women in Manufacturing campaign, the Society of Glass Technology Melting Technical Committee, and the Glass Futures Forum.

Our panel of judges said: 

"The reason that Erin came out on top was the advantage of working with Glass Futures and that placement having a real benefit in terms of the ability to be able to put to use the qualities she’s already shown [at Encirc] in such an important initiative such as Glass Futures in terms of shaping the future of our industry"

The judges also handed out commendations to each shortlisted nominee for this year’s Rising Star category commenting: 

"What really came across is that we’ve managed to find four or five people who really are rising stars, each of them is deserving of the commendation. They’re all doing great work in their companies and we think they will all go on to make a huge contribution to the glass industry.”

Rising star winner

Sponsored by:
Worshipful Company of Glass Sellers of London

Strengthening Business through People

In It Together by Encirc

Navigating a way through the Covid-19 lockdown has left businesses with many different challenges and Encirc were no different as they balanced increased demand from the retail sector with a split workforce in the factory and at home. 

A number of internal initiatives to unite the workforce were launched under the ‘In It Together’ banner including videos focusing on sustainability and thanking staff, regular engagement with homeworkers to boost productiveness and morale and improving onsite safety resulting in a lasting positive impact on the business and employee morale. 

When picking ‘In It Together’ as the winner of the Strengthening business through people award, the judges said: 

"We thought that the ‘In It Together’ really summed up the times really well in the fact that they showed clear evidence of a real togetherness and team efforts are more crucial than ever with people working so differently than they were a year ago."

In it together

Sponsored by:
Glass Worldwide

Glass Worldwide

Health and Safety Action

Wellbeing kiosks by Pilkington Glass UK

Installed as part of their annual Health and Safety day, the wellbeing kiosk’s offered Pilkington Glass UK’s employees the chance to have a free physical and mental health screening at work.

Offering confidential advice on a range of health-related topics such as cardiovascular fitness, blood pressure, diet and mental health to the predominantly older, male employees who are statistically less likely to see a doctor, the kiosks were introduced as a way to boost the health and productivity of their workforce. 

Commenting on Pilkington UK’s wellbeing kiosks, the judges said: 

“The company had gone above and beyond what they needed to do to look after the health and wellbeing of their staff by providing this physical object that staff could use and interact with on a daily basis”

NSG wellbeing kiosk

Sponsored by:
Arco Safety

Design of the Year – Flat

SaniTise by Pilkington Glass UK

Developed for use on flat glass by a team at NSG Group’s R&D Technology Centre in Lancashire, Pilkington SaniTise , a transparent antimicrobial glass, was a timely winner of the Design of the year – flat award. 

The specialist coating is activated through UV exposure and can be applied retrospectively to windows, facades and other applications of flat glass which left a lasting impression on our panel of judges, who commented: 

“In the current climate we’re living in at the moment trying to fight viruses it really does have a place in the modern life we live and all the judges felt that this was a fantastic product that will help save lives and make life better for all of us.” 


Sponsored by:
Glass International

British Glass’ Company of the Year


Encirc have worked tremendously hard for many years to set the benchmark for our industry and are worthy winners of the 2020 Glass Focus Award for Company of the Year. 

The Derrylin and Elton based business were shortlisted for five categories in this year’s awards for their work across multiple initiatives from sustainability to marketing and have also gained recognition for their work alongside Glass Futures on the upcoming biofuel trial at their Derrylin plant. 

Their work is held up as a beacon among fellow producers as they continue to epitomise everything that is great about the glass sector. 

Encirc - Company of the Year

Sponsored by:
British Glass

British Glass

Innovative Solution

New generation glass antenna by Stealth Case Oy

Stealth Case’s new generation glass antenna is a revolutionary design that significantly improves wireless indoor connectivity without complex installation, cabling, higher electricity consumption or maintenance. 

By incorporating a microscopically thin laser abated antenna pattern into windows turning them into a glass antenna, both WiFi and call quality is boosted indoors. 

The judges said: 

“It takes glass to new levels, down different paths – it isn’t just a packaging bottle or a window, it can have a real impact on the day to day lives of all of us”


Sponsored by:
Glass Technology Services

The sponsors

Glass Worldwide