International Label Conference 2018 – Review and picture gallery

International Label Conference 2018 by Brigl&Bergmeister took place in March in Salzburg, Austria (Source: Gerry Mayer-Rohrmoster)

AUSTRIA • “Moving together towards a circular economy” was the overall topic of this year’ International Label Conference tried to find answers. Organised by Brigl & Bergmeister the bi-annually conference welcomed about 150 participants from 21 to 23 March in Salzburg, Austria. NarrowWebTech reviews this event and publishes pictures of the conference.

About two and a half days, a range of presentations, panel discussions and workshops tried to find answers if the label and package printing industry is ready for 2025.


Why talking about 2025? In seven years, there is the deadline of several targets from new European packaging directive. Sophie Kieselbach from Thinkstep summarized the different targets relevant for packaging in her presentation about circular economy:

  • A minimum of 5% packaging waste must be reused in the local area, deadline 2025
  • A minimum of 10% packaging waste must be reused in the local area, deadline 2030
  • A minimum of 70% packaging waste must be readily recyclable or recycled, deadline 2025

Specific materials

  • 60% of plastic before 2025
  • 65% of wood before 2025 and 80% before 2030
  • 80% of iron based metals before 2025 and 90% before 2030
  • 80% of aluminium before 2025 and 90% before 2030
  • 80% for glassware before 2025 and 90% before 2030
  • 90% of carton and paper before 2025

[Summary from the circular economy presentation by Sophie Kieselbach. Thinkstep]

The question how to achieve these targets was part of a great part of presentations. In addition, there were more topics covered such as the current situation of the global labelling and product decoration market, presented by AWA’s president Corey Reardon. This market has growth rates worldwide with Asia on the forefront, followed by North America and Europe.


To sum up, all the presentations, panel discussions, workshop sessions and in particular discussions with participants illustrated one more time that:

1) Sustainability is of often spoken word, but in practice, it is not easy to manage whether if talking about recycling of release liner or consumer waste or if talking about how to come from a linear to a circular economy.

2) The label and packaging industry may have different printing widths, applications and following that, different requirements, but there are a range of similar challenges the label and packaging industry have in common. Especially this industry needs to increase its collaboration to meet the increasing number of challenges and – in the end – to talk about circular economy also in daily life, not only on stage.

The International Label Conference takes place bi-annually and was initiated in1986 by Brigl & Bergmeister, an Austria-based manufacturer of label papers and flexible packaging papers for the consumer packaged goods instry. The next edition is estimated for 2020.

A range of presentations, discussion panels and workshops were part of the International Label Conference 2018 (Source of pictures: Gerry Mayer-Rohrmoster)
After several keynotes such as by Jim Nordmeyer, VP global sustainability at Owens-Illinois …
… Dr Gertrude Eder, former managing director of Brigl & Bergmeister and today independent business consultant, moderated the first discussion panel about circular economy. How might the industry be able to change from a linear economy to a circular economy?
Not an easy topic, as the different opinions illustrated. Thus, even during the evening’s “flying dinner” discussions didn’t stop although the view about the Austrian city Salzburg was worthy of mention
The second day was moderated by Arthur Erdem, head of marketing and corporate Brigl & Bergmeister. By 2025, there are new EU targets, so a minimum of 70% packaging waste must be readily recyclable or recycled, deadline 2025
The audience listened carefully especially to the recycling of label and packaging material as this is still a quite challenging issue to implement
Sophie Kieselbach from Thinkstep explained the different steps to find the path that aligns with the company’s core values: 1) Develop or adapt a strategy to match 2) Prioritize your actions 3) Redesign your business 4) Determine indicators & measurement tools and 5) Iterate
However, the current market situation is a very interesting one. Corey Reardon from Alexander Watson Associates (AWA) presented the latest data for the global labelling and product decoration market.
The global label market is growing worldwide, Asia (44%) on the forefront, followed by Europe incl Russia (25%) and North America (25%) (Source data & picture: AWA)
Back to circular economy: different aspects and approaches were presented such as the cradle to cradle concept by Katja Hansen from EPEA
Last day means workshop day! Four topics, two sessions, so the editorial team of NarrowWebTech decided for “Future challenges of label production”, led by Heidelberger Druckmaschinen…
] … and the workshop about label design by Owens-Illinois (O-I) where participants could design its own label.
Hope to see you at the next International Label (and Packaging) Conference in 2020! (Source of all pictures expect nr 9: Gerry Mayer-Rohrmoster)

(Source of pictures 1-8 and 10-13: Gerry Mayer-Rohrmoster, Source of picture 09: AWA)

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