NarrowWebTech issue 4-2017: “You can’t judge a book by its cover”
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If this well known phrase is adapted to a label and its production, it might be changed to “you can’t judge a label without knowing the processes behind it.” In order to get to know all the steps in label printing and converting, there is no better place to be than Labelexpo. Compared with previous years the Labelexpo organiser Tarsus reported a record edition of the 2017 event. A higher number of exhibitors and visitors, more machinery on display and for sure, new areas and activities such as the automation area.
I don’t want to question these numbers. In fact, Labelexpo Europe was well visited, indeed very well visited. Why else would NarrowWebTech dedicate the whole “Market and Events” category in this issue to Labelexpo Europe? Why else would we cover the different areas of label production? Thus, you will find the different parts of label production as well as several perspectives on the show in this edition – either through talking about a personal comment by an Indian label person, by a European digital printing specialist or a historical outline of Labelexpo.
In the editorial of the previous issue I wrote that the key question will be: what will be THE topic that visitors will talk about? In my opinion, there was no real key topic. For sure, automation was discussed. Also digital printing has its relevance which is growing. Hybrid printing is still there as well as conventional printing or rotary die-cutting and sustainability has reached the industry so far. The more important thing is still, the ongoing process of change. The printing industry is changing, as it has for years and there is no reason, why this should change.
As a matter of fact, we all have to continue forwards. 2017 is almost over, the beginning of 2018 is close. There are developments which need reactions from all of us. Developments, which will cause a change in the label printing industry. To quote Graham Backhouse, general manager of BPIF labels “Like the industry and the members we serve, BPIF labels has to respond to those developments and the changes they bring to the industry.”
Graham Backhouse is right. I do not agree just because NarrowWebTech is the official media partner of BPIF labels, the Labels Group of the British Printing Industries Federation. I am not agreeing because I know that Graham is leading a label and package printing company in the UK and knows this business very well. No, I have the same opinion, because I think, that it is true. Development such as the digital printing, linerless labels or printing with UV LED already have their place in the label printing industry and have will a further impact. Or as Graham comments so well “The difficulty is dealing with the perceived pressure to react, to be involved, to keep up to date, and the possible consequences, if any, of doing nothing.”
As always, your feedback is more than welcome!
May I wish you a very peaceful holiday season and a happy and prosperous New Year from the NarrowWebTech team.