Color standardization for packaging in India gets a practical boost

The BMPA-IDEAlliance G7 shows in Delhi and Mumbai

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packaging
Steve Smiley discussed the need to outgrow LSD and to learn specify, print and control color quality by numbers – by using a spectrophotometer and using either LAB values for commercial printing or spectral curves in combination with LAB values for packaging. Below: Deepak Manchanda moderates the G7 discussion in Delhi. Photos PSA

A participant from one of the major brand owners which sent seven persons from its packaging design and development team to the Mumbai G7 standardization event, comments by email, “We would like to thank your entire team for hosting the event which
was informative and demonstrated all the key challenges and the possible solutions on color standardization for packaging.” Krishanu Dutta reports.

The G7 Show in Delhi, a color management discussion of brand owners and converters took place at the Crowne Plaza hotel on 14 February 2015. The room was not very large but it was jam-packed with about 60 participants including 17 brand owner packaging professionals and more than 32 participants from the converters’ side. The packaging designer and developer Deepak Manchanda moderated the event. Several members of IDEAlliance India took part and 12 participants represented the three sponsors – Epson, Indo-Polygraph-KBA and Sakata Inx.

The G7 show in Mumbai on 17 February was even more successful especially because it was organized jointly with the Bombay Master Printers Association – the BMPA’s new packaging forum headed by Tushar Bhotica. The space was larger but hardly big enough to hold the assembly of more than 85 participants. More than 25 brand owner personnel from 13 consumer product companies and 53 packaging printer-converters and a contingent of 10 intermediaries from four companies took part in the nearly four hour event.

IMG 9682The presentation by Dr Abhay Sharma on Printing by Numbers was wholly interactive with many questions from both brand owners and the converters about whether this can really be a practical reality in India. It became apparent that most brand owners and converters are pretty much hooked on LSD – the light, standard (approved) and dark samples that are used for visual conformance of packaging today. In a sense this presentation and the two presentations by Steve Smiley and the entire discussion was about how we need to outgrow this method and learn to specify, print and control color quality by numbers – by using a spectrophotometer and using either LAB values for commercial printing or spectral curves in combination with LAB values for packaging. RS Prasad of Sakata also spoke briefly about the basics of color reproduction as well as some of the issues concerning packaging – particularly flexibles. This was followed by a discussion where the participants highlighted the pain points in the packaging supply chain process today. Steve Smiley first presented the standardization need and method from the brand owners’ point of view and then followed it up with a technical presentation on the G7 method – an inherently simple system that relies on grey values and works across substrates and printing processes such as offset, gravure and flexo. Smiley also spoke about the need to use spectral curves in packaging in addition to using tone value curves and grey balance. Fully conversant because of the standardization work he has done for global brand owners, this was a strong technical presentation that points to the need for creating awareness at a high level amongst Indian packaging professionals.

Abhay Sharma 2
The presentation by Dr Abhay Sharma on Printing by Numbers was wholly interactive with many questions from both brand owners and converters about whether this can really be a practical reality in India. Photo PSA

The BMPA-IDEAlliance G7 show in Mumbai was a great success – an unprecedented platform for brand owners and converters holding a meaningful technical discussion. Not an easy topic but well addressed in a positive way by Steve Smiley pointing to practical implementation across the supply chain. Smiley spoke about the 16761-2 specification that builds on the responsibilities of each of the players in the packaging supply chain and helps to create an SOP or standard operating procedure particularly for packaging designers and purchasing departments. (16761-1 or part one does the same for commercial printing and both parts are likely to become published standards in the future.)

Many and most if not all of the standardization issues confronting the brand owners were addressed in the three presentations by Steve Smiley and the brief presentation by R Prasad of Sakata Inx India. A participant from one of the major brand owners which sent seven persons from its packaging design and development team to the event, comments by email, “We would like to thank your entire team for hosting the event which was informative and demonstrated all the key challenges and the possible solutions on color standardization for packaging.” Another participant from one of the quality intermediary organization writes, “Thank you for arranging the said meeting and it was really very important for all packaging converters and brand owners.”

In Delhi the brand owners included Amway India Enterprises, Coca-Cola India, Dabur India, LT Foods, Perfetti Van Melle India, Ranbaxy Laboratories, Reckitt Benckiser, SGS Asia Pacific, Surya Food & Agro and Surya Roshni. The converter participants included First Touch Solutions, Holostik India, Kumar Labels, Kumar Printers, Manohar Filaments, Meghdoot Packaging, Monarch Packaging, Sai Security Printers, Stylo Graphic Imaging, Uflex, Ultragraphics, and Tegra Digital.

In Mumbai participating brand owners included Colgate Palmolive India , HUL, AMCo (Amdipharm Mercury Group), Marico India, Sun Pharma, Mapaex, Parle, Pidilite Industries, Glemark Pharma, Godrej Consumer Products, Marksans Pharma, General Mills, Jabong. From the converter side Akar Packaging, Parksons Packaging, Shri Arun Packaging, Hi-Tone, Nobel Printing, Promt Printing QOT Packaging, Rich, Saroj Art Printers, Ampersand, TCPL, Unique, Comart, Hi-Tech Printing Services, Sai Packaging, Integrity Print, Malhar, Navneet and Saroj Art took part. Packaging intermediaries included Alia and Trigon.

Audiance Mumbai
The G7 Show in Mumbai on 17 February. Photo PSA

Naresh Khanna on behalf of IDEAlliance made a brief presentation about IppStar and IDEAlliance India at both shows. He spoke of the need to build such discussion platforms in cooperation with the partners in the packaging supply chain and of forthcoming webinars and training events, “It would be ideal if we can take our current membership from 11 to about 25 by the end of 2015 and hold a G7 expert training event in conjunction with one of the converters who is interested in having her plant qualified as a G7 Master facility. We could then combine the four-day training with one day of practical work in the printing plant and create some G7 experts within the country

“These are needed if we are to really take color standardization forward since the key is to have our own people who can learn from experienced experts like Steve Smiley and who can continuously explain and solve the day-to-day problems that will have to be addressed in standardization.

“It become very clear from both Dr Sharma’s and Steve Smiley’s presentations that half the battle is understanding that it can be done – that packaging print can be standardized specifying numbers – LAB and Spectral curve values and communication with all the partners in the supply chain using the list of SOPs that each of he players has to follow.”

Khanna added, “IppStar and IDEAlliance India are ready to do some of the difficult things that the industry needs. It also helps to have sponsors like Epson, KBA-Indo Polygraph, and Sakata Inx – they are quick to help and they want this to become a meaningful discussion so that converters can compete globally. Our young research team who marketed and sold the event are also a great resource for the industry.”

IDEAlliance INDIA

DEAlliance – a not-for-profit trade association of more than 1300 member companies based in the United States appointed IppStar as its international affiliate for India in 2013. IDEAlliance India enables Indian print service providers and brand owners to be a part of the worldwide development and adoption of media production standards and best practices.

Editor of Indian Printer and Publisher and Packaging South Asia, and director of IppStar, Naresh Khanna says, “IppStar is keen to bring IDEAlliance’s color management training
and G7 certificate programs to India. These programs will forward our work in the improvement in color reproduction and quality standards of a vibrant print and packaging industry. We are fortunate to enjoy the trust of the graphics arts community in a region where there is still double digit growth in print and packaging, and where brand owners are
becoming increasingly demanding.”

IDEAlliance India members

• Kumar Printers
• Letra Graphix
• KCL
• Singhania Offset Printers
• Surge Seven Inc
• Express KCS
• Image Gravure
• New Jack Printing Press
• Alia Creative Consultants
• Prompt Printing Solutions
• Sai Packaging

Building the graphic arts community

Founded in 1979, the IPP group now publishes two monthly trade magazines – Indian Printer and Publisher begun in April 1979 and Packaging South Asia, begun in January 2007 as a bimonthly and which is monthly since May 2011. We have been ethical consultants to the printing and publishing industry since 1979. We began our Ipp technical and user conferences in 1994.

Ipp Services, Training and Research started as a separate private limited company in 2001. IppStar became the Indian affiliate of IDEAlliance in 2013 and formed a division called
IDEAlliance India. The entire group currently employs 25 persons full time including 7 in IppStar.

Founded by the IPP Group in 2001 to take forward the company’s consultancy, conferences and research work IppStar immediately initiated its first multi-client entire print industry project. At the time there was no industry organization in India such as Fogra, UGRA and GATF. Taking forward the group’s success in ethical consultancy, seminars, training programs, conferences, IppStar took forward research projects begun in 1999 for an international manufacturer. It also established the Indian Print Exporters Forum 2004.

Training and research projects

• Thirteen IPP Conferences in 4 Indian cities – 1994 to 2009
• IppStar Roundtable events for Best Info-EFI 2003, Esko 2004, Nilpeter 2011
• Colour Management Certificate Courses 2004 Delhi, Chennai
• Indian Print Export Conferences in Delhi and Chennai 2005
• Research presentation – Primir – Portland, Oregon, 8/2007
• Monsoon Summit for ISO 12647 standardization in Delhi, Mumbai and Chennai – 2008
• Research presentation – Goa 2011
• Drupa breakfast research presentation – May 2012
• IDEAlliance India activity – March 2013 onwards
• IDEAlliance India CMP Training – February 15-16 2014 Delhi; February 20-21 2014 Mumbai
• IDEAlliance India brand owner and packaging converter meets in Delhi and Mumbai on 14 and 17 February 2015
• International digital press manufacturer 1999
• Multi-client project on Indian Print Industry 2001-04
• Clients included Heidelberg India, Manugraph, NPES, IPAMA, Kodak Polychrome Graphics, ATE
• CtP and Digital Print in India – Survey and Trend forecasts 2006 – international manufacturer
• Leading multi-color printers in India – what do they want
• International press manufacturer 2007 – heatset web installations
• FMCG use of inkjet in end of line packaging in India 2007 – international research company
• Digital color production in India 2010 – leading international manufacturer
• Multi-client project on Indian Print Industry 2010-2012
• Benchmarking exit strategies – Private equity investor 2011
• Indian packaging company market research– 2012
• Multinational co. packaging consumables research 2012-13
• Multinational equipment manufacturer – 2013
• Gobal equipment and software manufacturer 2014-2015
• Major equipment and consumable distributor 2014-15
• Global equipment manufacturer – Customer satisfaction survey 2014-15

Consultancy projects

• Thomson Press India
• Delhi Press
• Nutech Photolitho
• Punjabi Press
• Tata Press
• Amrita Bazar Patrika
• Malayala Manorama
• Large international non-profit organisation, India
• Large international non-profit organisation, Bangladesh
• Business India Group
• Pioneer daily
• Outlook magazine group
• Himal Media, Nepal
• Commercial print and monocarton – new plant
• European equipment manufacturing company – 2013
• European trading and retail company for packaging vendor development – 2014

The impact, resilience, and growth of responsible packaging in a wide region are daily chronicled by Packaging South Asia.

A multi-channel B2B publication and digital platform such as Packaging South Asia is always aware of the prospect of new beginnings and renewal. Its 16-year-old print monthly, based in New Delhi, India has demonstrated its commitment to progress and growth. The Indian and Asian packaging industries have shown resilience in the face of ongoing challenges over the past three years.

As we present our publishing plan for 2023, India’s real GDP growth for the financial year ending 31 March 2023 will reach 6.3%. Packaging industry growth has exceeded GDP growth even when allowing for inflation in the past three years.

The capacity for flexible film manufacturing in India increased by 33% over the past three years. With orders in place, we expect another 33% capacity addition from 2023 to 2025. Capacities in monocartons, corrugation, aseptic liquid packaging, and labels have grown similarly. The numbers are positive for most of the economies in the region – our platform increasingly reaches and influences these.

Even given the disruptions of supply chains, raw material prices, and the challenge of responsible and sustainable packaging, packaging in all its creative forms and purposes has significant headroom to grow in India and Asia. Our context and coverage engulf the entire packaging supply chain – from concept to shelf and further – to waste collection and recycling. We target brand owners, product managers, raw material suppliers, packaging designers and converters, and recyclers.

In an admittedly fragmented and textured terrain, this is the right time to plan your participation and marketing support communication – in our impactful and highly targeted business platform. Tell us what you need. Speak and write to our editorial and advertising teams! For advertisement ads1@ippgroup.in , for editorial info@ippgroup.in and for subscriptions subscription@ippgroup.in

– Naresh Khanna

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