In absolute numbers, Interpack showed a 28 per cent rise in Asian visitors as compared to interpack 2005, and an increase of 32 per cent in Indian visitors. Many of the visitors returned to Düsseldorf hardly a month later for drupa08. A visitor survey undertaken by Messe Düsseldorf indicates that 78 per cent of the visitors were interested in process technologies and equipment for packaging and converting.
The second largest segment, packaging materials and packaging, was of interest to 50 per cent of the visitors. Machinery and process technology for confectionery and bakery goods were on the agenda for 14 per cent of the visitors. All three segments had expanded in terms of floor space compared to interpack 2005. Interpack’s President Erhard Rustler concluded: “In particular, the deals sealed are more than gratifying. These will contribute to the industry’s further robust development and stem equally from the segments machinery, process technologies and packaging.”
Including the last-minute registrations, there were 51 Indian companies exhibiting at interpack, consisting of 31 equipment manufacturers, 14 material suppliers and 6 service providers. Out of the 306 exhibitors from Asia (not counting those represented by their European distributors), China had a presence of 112 booths (including 15 from Hong Kong), Taiwan 70, Korea 26, Japan 21 and Vietnam 12, next to smaller representations from Malaysia, Thailand and Singapore and one company from Pakistan. Interestingly, a majority of exhibitors from Asia and more particularly from South Asia appears to be shifting from material suppliers to equipment manufacturers. We are observing this trend only recently but also at some of the other international trade exhibitions.
Based on several estimates, the global packaging market amounted to some US$ 470 billion (approximately Rs. 2,000,000 crores) in 2007, divided across cellulose packaging 36 per cent, plastic packaging 34 per cent, metal packaging 18 per cent, glass packaging 8 per cent, and wooden packaging 4 per cent. The European market was estimated at 30 per cent of the world market, Asia and North America each at 28 per cent, Latin and Central America at 8 per cent and the remainder including Africa at 6 per cent. At present, annual growth rates are spread extremely unevenly. Some examples: Germany 1.5 per cent, Japan 1.6 per cent, USA 1.9 per cent, Korea 6 per cent, Russia 7 per cent, China 8 per cent, Brazil 10 per cent, Poland 11 per cent, India 14 per cent, and Turkey 19 per cent.
The largest market segments are food (38 per cent of the global packaging industry), beverages (18 per cent), chemicals (6 per cent), medical (6 per cent), pharmaceuticals (5 per cent) and cosmetics (5 per cent). Global packaging printing reached an estimated sales turnover of US$ 180 billion in 2007, distributed across corrugated board US$ 65 billion, flexible packaging US$ 51 billion, folding carton US$ 38 billion and labels US$ 26 billion.
Total packaging equipment sales in 2007 amounted to US$ 33 billion. The largest manufacturers of packaging machinery are based in Germany, Italy, the USA and Japan. The German and Italian manufacturers’ shares of 23 per cent and 20 per cent of the market, respectively, are felt particularly strong because the largest part of their production, 90 per cent, is exported – against 18 per cent of the equipment made in the USA. At interpack 2008, two-thirds of the packaging machinery on show were from Germany and Italy alone, and included conveying, feeding, bottling, capping, sealing, filling, casing, cartoning, packing, unpacking, bagging, pouching, palletising, unpalletising, wrapping, skin and blister packaging, shrink film heating, detecting, inspecting, checkweighing, printing, marking, coding and converting equipment.
In packaging printing and converting equipment, Bobst and Windmöller & Hölscher are the market leaders, followed by Cerutti-Flexotecnica, Comexi, Uteco and PCMC in wide web flexo and Cerutti in gravure. Just before interpack, the Switzerland-based Bobst Group had announced that it was acquiring flexo press manufacturer Fischer & Krecke, thus making Bobst, already strong with Schiavi, the global market leader for central impression flexographic presses. For Bobst, F&K’s range of FP presses, covering widths between 850 and 2750 mm at speeds of upto 1000 meters a minute, seamlessly extended Schiavi’s EF pressrange at 850 to 1650 mm wide and speeds of upto 400 mitres a minute. With its own Champlain pressline, and the Rotomec brand resulting from the earlier Valmet takeover (also including Atlas, Titan, Midi and General), Bobst had already reached the number one position in flexible packaging. At interpack 2008, Fischer & Krecke were already integrated within the Bobst stand.
German manufacturer Windmöller & Hölscher kept the unveiling of its new Heliostar S gravure press for drupa08, but at interpack showed the Miraflex C flexo press for the first time. W&H also showed the Diamant, its latest generation of FFS (form-fill-seal) bagging systems, and the Opal, Topas and Rubin bagging systems for specific applications. The company has a complete programme of blown and cast film extrusion lines, flexo and gravure presses, bagging and packaging systems, woven plastics converting and finishing machines, and its own training institute for machine operators. Windmöller & Hölscher CEO Jürgen Vutz commented: “For us interpack is particularly attractive because as exhibitors we showcase machinery that is of great interest to customers who are in turn also exhibitors at the fair. Interpack is the only event where customers and suppliers are drawn to a common exhibitor platform.”
Interpack 2008 staged two theme-oriented areas in the exhibition’s Hall 7a, where some of the main trends in packaging and processing were highlighted. Bioplastics in Packaging showcased polymers, granulates and additives geared at topics such as enhanced barrier properties, heat resistance, processing applications and biodegradable or renewable materials. Organisers included the European Bioplastics Association with support from BASF, DuPont, NatureWorks and others. The Innovation Parc Packaging consisted of clustered pavilions reflecting such trends as shelf ready packaging (SRP), enhanced finishing technologies for printers and converters, the increased use of robots, software integration, RFID, waste reduction, recycling and energy saving technologies. Participants included Cartondruck, Esko Graphics, Heidelberg, manroland, MeadWestvaco, Metro, M-Real, Siegwerk, Smurfit Kappa, Stora Enso and other members of the 600-company-strong European Association of Carton and Cartonboard Manufacturers, which also celebrated its twentieth anniversary.
Some of the South Asian highlights at interpack 2008
Penguin Engineers from Coimbatore showcased various stretch wrapping, hose wrapping and braiding machines, including pallet wrapping, palletising, reel wrapping, and unwrapping, yarn and wire winder and braider machines as well as an automatic carton box packing line. Penguin, a recipient of numerous excellence awards, has been a manufacturer and exporter of these machines for 18 years and has installations across South Asia, Asia Pacific, Africa, the Middle East, USA and Latin America. The company’s Vice President, Marketing, R Jagannathan, told us at the stand that the company had just concluded a joint venture with Mac Due from Bologna, Italy, for the manufacture of Mac Due shrink wrapping machines in India, both for the local market and exports.
The Labh Group of Companies had a large booth presenting packaging machines, materials and packaging-related IT services. Their machinery includes bottle filling, capping, labelling, sealing, overwrapping, strapping, shrink and vacuum packing, pouch and sachet packaging lines. Packaging materials include mono- and multilayer PP and PE film materials, PVC and polyester twist grade film for confectionery packaging, shrink labels and sleeves, plastic laminated and seamless tubes, aluminium collapsible tubes, lid foils, metal crowns and lug caps. The Labh Group is ISO 9001 certified and has equipment installations in the Americas, Europe, Asia, Africa, the Middle East and most of the CIS countries.
Bakshi Enterprises from New Delhi was present as an HP Special Printing Systems partner, showcasing markjet, a marking and coding system using HP’s Pharma Black inkjet technology for pharmaceutical and other applications launched at interpack 2008. The ISO 9001 certified company also presented its Markem, Amor, Ostling and Markcom products produced partly in collaboration with partners in Germany and the USA.
Satish Enterprises from New Delhi showed its Hot Print 300 device for marking and coding, which uses a photoelectric ink roll instead of liquid ink. At speeds of upto 300 prints per minute, it is suited for laminated or varnished labels, polyester and BOPP pouches, aluminium foil and other porous or non-porous surfaces, and while adhering to WHO GMP norms is particularly aimed at medical and pharmaceutical applications.
Packaging and processing machinery on show at interpack 2008 also included equipment from Dhiman Systems (Nakodar), Electronics Devices (Mumbai), Gabbar Engineering (Ahmedabad), Gemni International (Secunderabad), IndTech (Pune), Khosla Machines (Mohali), Kovai Pharma Machineries (Mumbai), Lohia Starlinger (Kanpur), Maharshi International (Ahmedabad), Midfield Industries (Hyderabad), Multipack Systems (Vadodara), New Era Machines (Ludhiana), Nichrome India (Pune), Pakona Engineers (Mumbai), Power Band (Daman), Precision Gears (Indian subsidiary of Italian IMA Group, Mumbai), Rapid Pack Engineering (Thane), R&D Engineers (Hyderabad), Sodaltech Exports (Coimbatore), Spheretech/Span Filling Systems (Mumbai), Subnil Packaging Machineries (Mumbai), Technofour Electronics (Pune), Vectacraft (Mumbai), Wraptech Machines (Mumbai) and others.
Jindal Poly Films
Jindal Poly Films displayed its full range of BOPET and BOPP films, including PP coated with PVDC, acrylics and low-temperature sealants for packaging of snack-foods, confectionery, bakery products, meat and tobacco overwraps. JPFL’s plant at Nashik in Maharashtra is the world’s largest filmproducing unit. Encouraged by the response received at interpack, its current capacity is being stepped up to 380,000 tons per year for BOPP and 150,000 tons per year for BOPET by 2010, making Jindal the world’s largest manufacturer of oriented films.
Plastene India, a subsidiary of the Champalal Group, showed its range of flexible packaging materials, mainly flexible intermediate bulk container (FIBC), tarpaulin and woven bags, LDPE film and reprocessed granules. The ISO 9001 certified company has a production capacity of 30,000 tons per year which is currently being expanded to 100,000 tons by 2009.
Other substrate manufacturers and converters at interpack 2008 included Cosmo Films (Aurangabad), Lead Edge Papers (Hyderabad), Makers Polyfilms (Ahmedabad), Manish Packaging (Surat), Positive Packaging (Mumbai), Sunrise Packaging (New Delhi), Uflex (Noida) and others.
Svam Packaging Industries from New Delhi showcased its Alublis cold formable foil for blister packaging with a high barrier to moisture, oxygen and other gases and UV.
Ghiya Extrusions, based in Khatraj, near Ahmedabad, attracted much interest from international prospects for its range of GEcell and GE WineSeal caps: capseals for beverages, food, cosmetics and pharmaceutical applications. Dodia Establishment from Mumbai also showed a range of caps.
Sewa Medicals, a division of the Shandilya Group based in Mumbai, showcased hypodermic glass syringes, prefillable syringes, tubular vials, glass tubes and lab wares.
United Manufacturers from Karachi, Pakistan, presented a large range of plastic and aluminium tubes for different industry segments.
Mumbai-based Parksons Packaging presented its full range of folding carton packaging solutions, including laminated fluted cartons, plastic cartons, lined cartons, cartons made from nonabsorbent substrates such as metallised and holographic paperboard, retail ready packs and labels. Being the only Indian carton manufacturer to have received ISO certification for food packaging and PS 9000:2001 certification for pharmaceutical packaging, the company drew crowds not least with an original brochure designed for its interpack presence.
Acuprint Systems, a division of Enpee Group’s Positive Packaging with offices and production facilities in Mumbai, Bangalore, New Delhi, Dubai and London, offered prepress services ranging from the processing of graphic files including image inspection, OCR and proofing to preparation and engraving of rotogravure cylinders, processing of flexo plates, embossing cylinders, anilox rollers, coating cylinders and ceramic cylinders for various applications. The company is ISO 9001 and 14001 certified. Another prepress company at interpack was Online Graphics of Ahmedabad.
Mumbai-based IPMMI, the Institute of Packaging Machinery Manufacturers of India, represented its 43 member companies with a booth at interpack. As a sponsor to Messe Düsseldorf’s next packaging event in India, International Packtech India 2008, it also promoted this event across the interpack show. Packtech India is to be held at the Bombay Exhibition Center in Mumbai, 19 to 22 November, 2008. The next edition of interpack in Düsseldorf has been scheduled for 12 to 18 May 2011.