Labelexpo Europe, the largest event for the label industry, will soon open its doors and visitors can look forward to experiencing a wide range of new technologies. However, at BOBST, we believe that advanced technologies alone are not enough. It takes more than a good press to be a successful label converter. So, before you come to visit BOBST at the show, we would like to share some thoughts about printing based on more than 130 years of experience and commitment to packaging production.
Labels are everywhere and their role continues to evolve. They strive to become more visually appealing to captivate consumers, incorporate variable data for security and traceability purposes, provide frequently changing regulatory information, and finally, there is a growing demand for them to be more environmentally friendly.
The digital realm is making headway in all markets. While flexography still dominates, digital printing has established itself, and inkjet technology, in particular, is experiencing strong growth due to its user-friendly simplicity and high quality. Similar to other industries, we are also witnessing a closer integration between digital and flexo. But while digital continues to grow, flexo still presents many opportunities for advancement, so it can be difficult to envision exactly what the future holds.
Take a moment to reflect
Before you start your Labelexpo journey, take some time to analyze your current capabilities and job basket to gain complete clarity about which direction to take.
Here are some aspects to consider before making any decisions:
What type of segments do you currently supply?
What is the company’s strategic direction – are you aiming for revenue growth, new segments, new applications, volume vs. hyper personalization, etc.?
Do you have a production workflow in place? How well are the different technologies on your production floor integrated?
Do you sell digitally produced labels? If so, why and how?
Does your sales force understand the value of each application and have they been trained to sell them?
Do you have a reliable pre-press department? How are your proofs managed and who monitors customer approvals?
How do you price labels and how do you measure profitability?
Do you measure your energy consumption and waste? Are your employees actively encouraged to reduce waste?
What kind of human resources do you rely on?
What is the main issue that prevents you from sleeping at night?
At BOBST, we understand that one technology doesn’t fit all; production floor diversification with offset, inline flexo, inkjet, toner, etc., drives efficiency, profitability and offering by allocating the right job to the right equipment. To this end, BOBST provides a complete portfolio of printing and converting solutions with expertise in both digital and flexo technologies, because our job is to ensure that you have the most effective production setup. Our label and flexible packaging experts will be ready to guide you to ensure you deploy the appropriate production lines for your business.
Experience the future of label printing
During your visit to Labelexpo, you may reminisce about the 2000s and be amazed that a fully automated factory, the full Industry 4.0 concept, is nearly here. The core of this development will be a production line incorporating the necessary technologies, driven by software that will orchestrate every step from PDF to final labels. At the show in Brussels, you will be able to experience this concept up close with the BOBST DIGITAL MASTER series which will be running live in All-in-One (hybrid) production mode.
Printers are confronted with cost pressures, tight deadlines, and, above all, a shortage of skilled labor to handle an increasing number of shorter print runs each day. Longer runs will remain the domain of flexo, and the BOBST MASTER M6 equipped with highly efficient automation will open up new opportunities in flexible packaging, IML and sleeves where regulatory changes and unpredictable sales forecasts often lead to repeated printing. Automation and digitalization are key in this environment; come see it for yourself on the BOBST booth.
As the concept of the breakeven point according to run lengths becomes less relevant, we must evaluate the profitability of a press or a facility as a whole. In 2022, 13% of labels were digitally produced, accounting for 30% of the value in label printing according to Smithers. The crucial figure to bear in mind is that by 2030, 50% of labels will be pure ‘commodity’ items, mostly ordered online, where automation will be imperative. The other 50% will be ‘value-added’ labels, featuring variable data, security elements, and embellishments. These will be easier and faster to produce using 100% digital or hybrid presses combining flexo elements for certain processes within a digital core. Beyond new hardware, investments in software and, above all, in new employees who master data workflows, will be necessary and strategic. In this context, BOBST collaborates with key partners and operates a Competence Center in Florence, Italy, where we can train your employees.
Now, prepare your questions and come with an open mind to see BOBST, so we can help simplify label production for you. We look forward to welcoming you at Labelexpo on Booth 3A58–3A59 at Hall 3.
REGISTER YOUR VISIT