Jon Huntsman said ‘goodbye’ to the GOP race, and ‘hello’ to plastics. (ERIC THAYER/REUTERS)

“One word. . .plastics.”

The former Utah governor and Chinese ambassador will give the keynote speech at an international plastics exposition in Orlando, according to the event’s organizer. SPI: The Plastics Industry Trade Association announced that Huntsman would be the main event, and noted his “strong ties to the plastics industry.”

That’s true--it’s likely that Huntsman has a durable, springy spot in his heart for the substance: in addition to his career in public service, Huntsman has worked for his father’s company, Huntsman Corporation, which makes chemicals and. . .you guessed it, plastics.

The plastics association throwing the confab didn’t tell us how much they’re paying Huntsman for the appearance. Perhaps he might fetch as much as his former rival, Mitt Romney. You might recall that the former Massachusetts governor earned nearly $400,000 in speaking fees, although he blundered in the GOP race by calling that amount “not very much.”