Certification initiative

Among the more intriguing initiatives underway in the anti-counterfeiting arena is one that would develop a new certification standard for producers of packaging.

Companies meeting the standard would in essence be able to guarantee that before, during, and after the production of their packaging materials, no data, waste, printing plates, or actual packaging materials can “disappear.” It would mean that every individual packaging product must be counted, registered, and accounted for in the same way that banknotes are.

Just such a standard exists today for banknotes and other “value documents.” It’s called CWA 14641. But this standard isn’t suitable for use in the packaging industry, says Geert de Vries of AC Brains, a consultancy with expertise in the field of strategic and operational solutions for the prevention of counterfeiting. That’s why the new international standard is being developed, and the development is being led by Intergraf, VPGI, and AC Brains. Intergraf already runs the above-mentioned CWA 14641 certification system, and VPGI played a leading role in that system’s development.

“With this standard in place, packaging suppliers will have to operate differently,” says de Vries. “Offset plates, for example, will have to be treated like a security item. The same with data. As things stand, it’s too easy to get data from packaging suppliers, and that makes it easy for counterfeiters.”

Packaging suppliers from Germany, Holland, and Switzerland are behind the push for this new international standard, says de Vries. Should a packaging supplier from the U.S. get on board, he adds, the possibility of an ISO standard would be enhanced

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