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New PRIMIR Research Investigates U.S. Market Trends For Flexography

Wednesday, August 05, 2015

Press release from the issuing company

Reston, VA - PRIMIR, the Print Industries Market Information and Research Organization, the research unit of NPES, announces completion of a new research study, "U.S. Market Trends for Flexographic Printing," authored by Freedonia Custom Research. With packaging a major print industry growth market, and flexo continuing among the fastest-growing printing technologies, the new research is designed to provide an understanding of where the market is today, and how brand owner, converter and application trends will impact the U.S. flexographic printing market in the future.

The "U.S. Market Trends for Flexographic Printing" study thoroughly examines drivers and barriers for flexography, as well as, technological advancements in presses, print quality, consumables, inks and substrates. The research focuses on corrugated, tag and label, folding carton and flexible packaging in the food, beverage, pharmaceutical and industrial (including agricultural) vertical markets in the U.S. It also investigates how and where flexo competes with digital, offset and gravure print processes.

Within the packaging segments, folding cartons are being replaced by flexible packaging and corrugated. Flexible packaging appeals to consumers' preferences for convenience and portioning, while corrugated makes more sense for bulk purchases. These trends are resulting in a shrinking market for folding cartons. Premium folding cartons, however, used for cosmetics, perfume, electronics, and specialty food products will account for growth of folding cartons.

According to the PRIMIR study findings, flexography is well positioned for growth with trends in both product run length and substrate usage favoring flexo over gravure and litho. While digital printing continues to gain popularity, it remains competitive primarily in shorter runs. To prepare for future competition from digital, however, the flexographic industry must continue to innovate with an end goal of higher print quality. One example is flat-top dot plates, which provide improved print quality while at the same time lower costs due to an improved lifespan of these plates. By driving fixed costs down, flexo will compete more effectively against digital printing.

The research also revealed an increasing desire in the marketplace to shift away from solvent-based inks and coatings, however, quality levels, especially in flexible packaging, have not reached acceptable levels for brand owners. Freedonia reported the likelihood that any technology that cost-effectively enables the use of solvent-free inks and coatings with acceptable quality levels will gain market acceptance.

Finally, while digital printing is positioned to compete with to flexo in shorter runs, it also offers the potential for hybridization. Presses that work in tandem offer opportunities for flexography to further achieve needed printing requirements from brand owners.

This research study, "U.S. Market Trends for Flexographic Printing,was recently distributed to all PRIMIR members, along with an informative study overview video that can be accessed at:http://tinyurl.com/phh9mlz. For more information contact Rekha Ratnam, Assistant Director, Market Data/Research, at phone: 703/264-7200, e-mail: rratnam@primir.org, or visit: www.primir.org.


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