The fourth biennial conference of the Label Manufacturers Association of India (LMAI), titled Innovation Simplified, was held at Jaypee Palace Hotel and Convention Centre, Agra, from 20 to 23 July 2017.
More than 550 delegates from across the globe attended the event. The show hosted more than 20 presentations from different companies that helped flexo printers gain knowledge and understanding of technologies.
Expressing gratitude, LMAI president Sandeep Zaveri, said in his welcome note, “two years ago when I was chosen to be a President of LMAI, I did not know that this journey will have such a strong impact on me, it has not only introduced me to new buyers and suppliers but also made me sit back reflect on things which I really wanted to do, things that are beyond my office and printing house. Gradually, my ideas and issues became a part of a larger network. Thanks to LMAI and its wonderful committee that made me think of new ideas.”
Adding on the theme Innovation Simplified, Mr. Zaveri said, “The suppliers and printers in the industry are struggling to make justified margins. We need to keep focus on improving our operational efficiency, reducing waste, making optimal use of printing equipment & processes. We need to highlight innovation that matter to us in India.”
Throwing light on some facts and economic condition, Pankaj Bhardwaj (senior director and general manager, label and graphic materials South Asia for Avery Dennison) said “IMF has increased the GDP world forecast from 3.4% to 3.5%, which is a good news for Label industry, the machine learning and artificial intelligence is fast catching up and would play far disruptive role.” Further commenting on the topic of discussion he stated, “The companies like Google, Amazon, Uber are the fantastic example of simplified innovation. General Electric invented its lowest cost ECG machine with the help of Indian scientist. Indian Institute of Science has come out with a nano scale water purifier which is ultra low cost and can purify the impurities of highest degree. So our DNA is primarily focusing on innovation and is another example of innovation simplified. “
Lisa Milburn, managing director, Tarsus Group praised LMAI for their efforts and also the Indian label printing industry. Talking about the different growing economies of the world and the various prevail trend she said, “China is growing at 8 to 10%, South East Asia around 7%, and India market between 8 to 9%. Convertors are under increase margin pressure that is mainly due to increase of raw material prices. The end users today are demanding of shorter run length and the demand for customize and personalize product is increased. We are also witnessing trend in automation of production process.”
Further adding on the next edition of Labelexpo India, she said, “The next Labelexpo India will be held in Greater Noida from 22nd to 25th November. Before the expo will be doing road shows in various cities of India, like Kerala, Kochi, West Bengal, Indore, Kanpur, Rajkot, Surat, Ahmedabad; and also in other neighboring countries like Sri Lanka and Bangladesh. For the growing South East Asia market we have also planned to launch new show in Bangkok i.e. Labelexpo South East Asia.”
During the event, Harveer Sahni of Weldon Celloplast was awarded with Lifetime Achievement Award by the LMAI, he is also one of the founders of the Indian label printing movement. Thanking the LMAI association Mr. Sahni added in his speech, “When I started writing my blog I was perplexed on the readers aspect, but when the blog crossed 5000 page views I was thrilled and today my blogs are on the verge to cross 200,000 page views. Networking globally is another aspect that has promoted my passion. I tried to give back the industry which gave me so much love and affection. Still there are many more veterans in the industry who has contributed day-in and day-out for the uplift of the industry.”
Avery, Bobst and Flint
On the theme ‘Innovation Simplified’ the presentation began from Jitesh Mehta of Avery Dennison on the subject of emerging ideas and its implementation and how to reward the innovators. He also spoke about its company's innovation of Aqua Opaque – an uncoated white paper luxury-look label stock for wine bottles. New Aqua Opaque technology keeps your label white, even in wet conditions, meeting the ‘ice bucket challenge’. This ground breaking innovation resists the impact of moisture absorption and greying effect to the label for at least 2 hours. Wine producers can safeguard visual appeal at all stages in the value chain - including the chilling cabinet and consumers at home.
Bobst marketing director Frederico D’annunzio spoke about the generational change in the industry with its respect of workflow, and the need of digital flexo technology with change in the workflow pattern. He explained the advantages of Bobst/Radex – Launch of Mouvent digital printing presses; the two digital label printing presses Mouvent LB 702-UV (web width: 340 mm/13.4”) and Mouvent 701 LB 701-UV (web width: 170 mm/6.7”). A core element of the Mouvent is the digital printing technology developed by Radex and based on an integrated cluster. Due to its smart and compact design, it is said to be a breakthrough technology for various applications like printing on textile, labels, corrugated board, flexible packaging substrates and folding boxes.
Kelly Kolliopoulos, the global marketing director of Flint Group, spoke about LED UV curing inks. Speaking on the benefits she said, “UV LED curing technology is now rapidly growing inside the UV printing market with compelling advantages of better economics, system capabilities, and environmental benefits. UV LED curing is now an accepted tool in the printing industry. It allows for advanced capability on challenging applications for industrial printers. Printers can offer media versatility and can now run thinner materials through the machine without warping or wrinkling. UV LED technology offers the ability to print on uncommon substrates. As a side benefit, these thinner substrates also reduce shipping costs, both of the raw materials and the finished product, providing further economic benefit to end users and their customers.”
Esko, SMI & Gallus
Senior Product Manager of Esko, Jan Buchweitz explained LED UV curing benefits in the post-processing of HD Flexo and Full HD flexo plates imaged on the new Esko CDI XPS Crystal 5080. As per Buchweitz, the flexo plate making process consists of many complex and manual steps but with new CDI Crystal 5080 XPS, making flexo plates finally becomes a coordinated and linear process.
Rohit Mehta of SMI Label Products spoke about the growth of India and FDI investment. According to him competition plays an important role that brings out innovation in workflow and also the eagerness to stay ahead. Ajay Mehta initiated his presentation by thanking the industry for its continued support and making his company a global competitor in label stock business. He says, the label printing requires constant up gradation of machine because technology is changing and it will continue to innovate, the smallest idea of innovation can eventually leads to bigger change and hence even the smallest idea has to be implement. He indicated that there is a saving of 5.5% on labelstock due to withdrawal of sundry taxes such as octroi.
Speaking on the Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE), Mr.Samir Patkar of Gallus India anticipated on the fact that the increasing price pressure might be due to reasons like the raw material prices going up, exchange rates etc. but if the flexo printer are not making substantial money out of their business that they will not be motivated to invest further. He said the OEE can be achieved by increasing operational efficiency and by reducing wastage. The average OEE off label printing industry across the world is 85% whereas the OEE of the flexo label printer is just 45%. In Patkar’s view, the benchmark set is very low and the flexo presses are not being optimally utilized.
After all presentations, round table sessions were conducted for the benefit of manufacturers and suppliers, where the sponsors were divided into different groups and then allocated different rooms with round tables. Printer members were also divided into groups and were made to meet on the round table with sponsors for limited period. The idea behind round table discussion was to interact one-on-one with different printer and answer their queries.
In the end Kuldip Goel – chairman of the conference gave vote of thanks to all the delegates followed by gala night hosted by Avery Dennison with a theme “an Affair to remember”.