Growth for digitally printed packaging

Printing companies like Mediaware are starting to see the potential that digital technology offers for the packaging market.

Prime labels, folding cartons, and flexible packaging offer significant opportunity for the printing industry. The digital packaging market has proven to be recession-proof. There’s no displacement of printing in packaging by electronic media. Instead, packaging is growing with the human population, and color digital print is growing within packaging.

According to industry research firm InfoTrends, gross billings from color Print On Demand systems used by packaging and label converters topped $1.9 billion worldwide in 2009. InfoTrends expects this market to roughly double to nearly $4.5 billion by 2014. This represents a compound annual growth rate of 15.7% between 2009 and 2014. Digital, on-demand printing of labels and packages has become critical in the context of the current economic downturn and lean manufacturing initiatives, based on reductions in material, energy, and ink consumption. Digital artwork files in standard formats (including Quark, Adobe Illustrator, PDF, Adobe InDesign, and EskoArtwork) can be received online, quickly preflighted and impositioned, and then sent directly to press for digital printing. Jobs that once took several days now ofer same-day turnaround times, enabling the just-in-time supply chain solution sought by brand owners.

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