Now that restrictions are being lifted, we are seeing new demands for label printers and labelling in general. The market dynamics have changed, and this is going to affect the choice of printed label types and influence new developments in label printer technologies.
We have noted other major technological advancements and trends below also:
Reduction in Packaging Weight
The packaging industry are always moving in the direction of reducing the weight of packaging either by using thinner rigid containers or switching to flexible plastic formats. The label industry is looking at a reduction too with smaller labels being preferred or labels that are produced from thinner materials. Scientific developments have helped in the reduction of volume and thickness used in label materials whilst still being able to maintain the strength required for handling and printing. Thinner materials can offer advantages such as more labels per roll for label printers. As well as more labels on the rolls, the rolls are lighter and easier to manage. Many companies have reduced the size of the labels on their products which in turn has allowed for savings on plastic and paper.
Recycling is key in today's world, and it is growing in importance in the label printing world. Many countries are introducing ways to improve recyclability and although the label may be a relatively small part of packaging, the materials used in the labels can play an important part in recycling. Labels can affect the purity of the plastic or even make plastic packaging unrecyclable. Being able to easily remove the label adhesive is important and new label adhesives are being introduced to ensure the bond is broken completely so recycling is ensured.
Label Printing Automation
We are going to see more demand on label printers that can do shorter print runs with faster turnaround. Label printers will have greater flexibility and customisation as well as higher levels of automation. New label printers are using sophisticated management information systems that integrate easily with inspection and colour performance software and technology.
Label printers will be required to provide greater customisation and developments in digital printing processes and are set to attract a lot of investment. The aim here is to improve print run speeds and print quality as well as reducing the production costs. New software and label printers will be required as well as better and higher quality inks.
Counterfeiting is something that continues to affect the pharmaceutical, electronics, food, and cosmetic industries and new security features are going to be introduced onto product labels to help reduce this. These methods can include glues on the labels and integrated designs that will make counterfeiting near impossible. We may also see bespoke labels that will integrate security features that will allow customers verify the authenticity of their product using QR codes.
More information on new label printers and labelling technology will be added to our website as 2022 progresses so keep an eye out!