New Records Set at This Year’s Event
Last month’s Labelexpo saw a record number of exhibitors and was bigger than anything in the event’s 25-year history.
A little less than a year ago, we were talking about Labelexpo 2016 in India, which astonished everyone in the industry with its remarkable turnout and the huge range of innovative technology being showcased. But last month’s Labelexpo Europe has been described as the “biggest, greatest and boldest” yet.
Labelnet took an active role as always, showcasing the latest technology in promotional labels and taking the opportunity to rub shoulders with the biggest influencers in the industry, who visited from an incredible 139 countries.
Labelexpo’s Managing Director, Lisa Milburn, was understandably proud of the phenomenon that the event has become. She drew attention to the fact that Labelexpo has never stood still, and has constantly evolved to keep up with industry trends and developments.
This year, that fact was clearly reflected in the all new automation arena that proved so popular, along with the increased use of shrink sleeves and other innovative technologies and methods such as flexible packaging and package printing.
Foodsafe UV Initiative
Another indication of Labelnet’s constant diversification was the fact that Foodsafe UV took the opportunity to host its first meeting during the event. The industry group comprises major players in the converting industry to discuss and promote the safety of UV inks and varnishes that are used for indirect food contact packaging.
FoodSafe UV aims to promote certified UV curing that incorporates stringent testing. It sets out to demonstrate to the major players in the food industry that when incorporated into a GMP workflow, this is just as safe as the solvent and water-based inks that are typically used to print food packaging.
Meanwhile, Mike Fairley, the founder of UK-based training and certification organisation The Label Academy, took to the floor to discuss new education and training resources in the package printing industry.
These include two recently published books entitled Management Information Systems and Workflow Automation and Shrink Sleeve Technology. These titles bring the total number of Academy publications to 13, with more on the way.
Fairly told delegates: “The Label Academy now offers label producers, industry suppliers and even customers the opportunity to establish their own in-house education, training and certification for all levels of employee, developing the skills and knowledge required for the label plant of tomorrow.”
FINAT President Chris Ellison and former Managing Director Jules Lejeune joined Milburn and Fairley on the stage to commemorate 25 years of Labelexpo. Lejeune commented that the event has become a one stop shop for everything connected with the label converting and printing process.
He observed that the market has become larger, broader and deeper over these years. Larger because it has tripled in size in Europe alone; broader due to new technologies and alternative production methods; deeper in view of a closer relationship with the market.
He said that he is confident the industry can continue to evolve and meet the challenges of today and the future, through working together. Events like Labelnet demonstrate that this really can be achieved.