According to Fujifilm, there has been a continuous decrease in the demand for offset printing plates caused by the transition to other forms of communication, particularly digital media, and the diversification of printed output as a result of the growth in digital printing.
This trend has been accelerated by the effect of the Covid pandemic and the impact this has had on the way people consume print. This situation has been further compounded in Europe by raw material cost increases, the volatility of the energy market, and the impact of higher inflation.
As a result, Fujifilm has taken the decision to close its remaining offset plate production line at the company’s Tilburg manufacturing plant in the Netherlands. Production of plates currently made in Tilburg will be transferred to factories in Japan and China. After this transfer has taken place, the production of offset plates in Tilburg will stop, with the process anticipated to be complete in late 2023.
‘There is no doubt that offset printing will remain a critically important production process for many years to come, thanks to its ability to produce high-quality, cost-effective print in highly productive and automated print businesses,’ said the company in a statement. ‘Fujifilm remains fully committed to keep supplying its best-in-class offset printing plates into the EMEA market and be a key driving force by increasing the adoption of its processless plates, such as the industry-leading Superia ZX, as they offer the best combination of quality and performance and help print service providers improve production efficiencies further.
‘Fujifilm will strive to serve EMEA customers in the best way under the new business set up and will continue to focus its efforts on ways it can contribute to the future of the offset printing market.’
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