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Carol Houghton: Packaging supply chain connects at drupa

drupa was a somewhat overwhelming experience, but it was clear that package printing is a growing market. The show has also seen plenty of label-related launches; a full review will be published in L&L issue 3, 2012.

On the show floor, the view of the industry and its future seemed positive. A spokesperson for Kodak commented: ‘Everyone thinks the future for print is in daily life.’ While many of us are moving away from printed books in favor of digital formats, we continue to need everyday items such as food and drink, as well home and personal care products. For these products, nothing can replace the label and packaging. Even where QR codes and other interactive innovations have been adopted, the label still has a place to display this link to the ‘virtual world’, as well as vital product information. The threat will come as commercial printers die out and look to move into labels.

Returning to the subject of using the label as a marketing tool, it was pleasing to hear there was a large presence from brand owners wandering the exhibition halls – evidence they are increasingly aware of the benefits the label can offer their brand. Jeanine Graat, global marketing manager at Apex, noted that brand owners are now contacting the company directly. This is a positive sign that the entire packaging supply chain is beginning to connect and work together.

Carol Houghton, journalist, L&L