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Digital production from start to finish shown live at Xeikon Café 2018

At this year’s Xeikon Café Exhibition and Conference (20 to 23 March in Belgium), nearly 40 leading industry suppliers will be showing live demonstrations of a comprehensive range of creative label & packaging applications. These demos will add a practical, real-life dimension to the concepts and ideas discussed during the technical Academy sessions and Conference presentations. The applications are the result of industry suppliers integrating solutions, in order to help visitors understand true end-to-end digital production and visualise how digital technologies could impact their businesses.

“Xeikon Café is the only industry event, where complete end-to-end digital production is demonstrated live,” says Danny Mertens of Xeikon Café. “The nearly 40 suppliers exhibiting at the event are leaders in their respective field – including software, print media, consumables, digital printing and finishing solutions. They will not, however, simply show their own products, but by working together demonstrate what can be achieved by fully integrating solutions for label and packaging production.”

“Our aim is to be an open and objective industry event. Everyone with an interest in digital production is invited to attend, no matter the segment they are active in. We will be showing applications for food, pharma, household, beverages, health & beauty, amongst others”, Mertens continues. “We strive to be as technology agnostic as possible. Our focus is very much on creating a setting that educates and inspires people, in line with our theme ‘Learn. Connect. Discover’. Visitors should come away from the event with concrete ideas as to how they might benefit from implementing new packaging applications in their own businesses.”

Top six applications with maximum potential

The demonstrations will cover the packaging decoration techniques most commonly used in today’s label and packaging industry: wet-glue, self-adhesive labelling, in-mould & blow-mould, folding carton, wraparound labels, heat transfer labels,... To make it easier for visitors to navigate the large number of demos and find those that are most relevant to their business, Xeikon Café has identified the top six applications with the most potential to positively impact businesses by bringing new opportunities from digital production:

  • Self-adhesive labels, craft beer: micro-breweries are a strongly growing market. Digital production is the most cost-effective solution for the large variety of short-run craft beer labels these companies need, and offers benefits such as high quality and an outstanding professional offset look.
  • Self-adhesive labels, premium beer: as the beer market is becoming ever more diverse, breweries are looking for smaller series and customized labels. With digital production, random variable image printing of multi-designs for premium labels can be achieved all in one run, resulting in eye-catching labels that stand out on the shelf.
  • Food services, paper cups: digital provides the only food-safe complement for the production of over 50,000 paper cups, an ever more popular marketing tool. It offers unlimited possibilities for personalisation and advertising whilst ensuring high productivity.
  • In-mould, food containers: digital printing solutions on show at Xeikon Café offer food safety, high productivity and waste minimisation. This makes it the ideal complement to conventional technologies for brands who are seeking to improve their communication with their target audience.
  • Wet-glue labels, wine & spirits: a market driven by perception where high quality but also embellishments play an important role. Technically, these labels are amongst the most challenging to produce, and digital is the perfect complement to conventional offset print runs of up to 50,000 labels.
  • Peel & Reveal, chemicals: whether for industrial or household use, chemical labels must appeal to the consumer, be UV light resistant and resist chemical/mechanical stress. Digital production fulfils these needs, and adds fine details with pin sharp quality on top.

Industry suppliers exhibiting at Xeikon Café 2018 include A B Graphic International; Advanced Track and Trace; Argos Solutions; Avery Dennison; AVT; Brotech Graphics; CARTES; CDigital; Cerm; Esko; FLEXcon; Flint Group Narrow Web; Grafisk Maskinfabrik; Grafotronic; HYBRID Software; Iggesund Paperboard; KURZ; Label Traxx; Lake Image Systems; Meech; Metsä Board; MGI Digital Technology; Michelman; Rietstack; SEI Laser; SMAG Graphique; Stora Enso; Treofan; UPM Raflatac; VIGC; Wink; Xeikon; Xeikon PrePress (ThermoFlexX); YUPO; Zanders and Zünd Systemtechnik.

Full details of the Xeikon Café 2018 programme, including the applications, Conference presentations and technical sessions at the Academy, are available at www.xeikoncafe.com.