HP showcases labeling and packaging advancements

Skanem buys Indigo WS6800

Ajay RaoRane, sales manager - India & Sri Lanka, HP Indigo and inkjet press solutions and A Appadurai, country manager – Indigo and inkjet web press of HP India. Photo PSA

At the recently concluded Labelexpo India 2016, HP India showcased the HP Indigo WS6800 digital press, which is slated to be installed at Skanem Interlabels plant in Mumbai. Skanem is one of India’s leading label printers. Skanem Interlabels India is a repeat HP digital press customer, having installed its first HP Indigo WS4500 digital press in 2011.

The HP Indigo WS6800 Digital Press displayed at the show is the larger, faster and stronger version of the many Indigo WS4500 label and packaging digital presses that HP has already installed in India. Apart from higher productivity with a wider frame, it has an expanded application range with new ink capabilities. Using closed-loop control, the new in-line spectrophotometer on the press reduces the need for manual color calibration and adjustments with excellent support for special and brand colors including Pantone shades. The Indigo WS6800 supports HP’s SmartStream Labels and Packaging Workflow Suite 4.1.

In addition to the digital press, HP demonstrated a rich application gallery showcasing the latest labels and packaging applications including samples of HP SmartStream Mosaic, HP Indigo ElectroInk, Fluorescent Pink and HP Indigo ElectroInk Premium White amongst others. They also put on display some of the best-in-class labels and packaging applications developed by key HP Indigo customers.

HP demonstrated a rich application gallery showcasing the latest labels and packaging applications

Although digital printing of variable and short-run packaging has numerous creative possibilities, it is sometimes difficult to get printers and converters to invest in a new concept since they then feel that they have to find and convince the brand owners. A Appadurai, country manager – indigo and inkjet web press of HP India told us at the show, “When you are able to actually show brand owners and end users the possibilities as well as the process, the story is totally different. It is hugely positive.”

Appadurai further added, “The consumer market is changing rapidly with a proliferation of products, which leads to shorter run lengths. According to research, 76% of retail purchases are made at the store. This brings a battle of brands to the shelf of a super market. The packaging of the product should enable the brand to stand out on the shelf. Packaging decoration and functionality can be tremendously improved by digital packaging.”

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The capacity for flexible film manufacturing in India increased by 45% over the past four years. With orders in place, we expect another 20% capacity addition in 2024 and 2025. Capacities in monocartons, corrugation, aseptic liquid packaging, and labels are grown similarly. As the consumption story returns over the next six months, we expect demand to return and exceed the growth trajectory of previous years. The numbers are positive for most of the economies in the region – and as shown by our analytics, our platform increasingly reaches and influences these.

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– Naresh Khanna (25 October 2023)

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