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Siegwerk to “rethINK packaging” at interpack and drupa 2020

Siegwerk, one of the leading global providers of printing inks for packaging applications and labels, is getting ready for components 2020, interpack’s supplier trade fair for processing and packaging, as well as the 17th edition of drupa, the world’s leading trade show for printing technologies. At both shows the company will not only present its broad ink and service portfolio for packaging and labels but also demonstrate its contribution to the overall development of sustainable packaging concepts and its commitment to drive Circular Economy to practice – through innovative ink and service solutions. Another focus will be the company’s digitalization approach to identify new business models and improve efficiencies to build a strong base for future sustainable growth.

Creating circularity

Packaging plays an essential role in our lives today. Especially plastic packaging has gained popularity over the last 50 years as it contributes to our society’s wellbeing by addressing global challenges: It keeps medical products sterile, reduces transport emissions and provides safe surroundings for water, food and hygiene products. However, plastic packaging has challenges as it enters a failing linear system that follows the principle “take-make-use-dispose” resulting in discarding about 90% of plastic packaging after a single use. Thirty percent of the plastic waste created is not formally disposed but leaked into the environment. “The pressing question today is how the advantages of plastic packaging can be used without the negative side effects. We strongly believe that creating a Circular Economy is the solution to this problem”, explains Alina Marm, Head of Circular Economy Hub at Siegwerk, a specially established unit to serve the transition towards a Circular Economy across the company.

In a Circular Economy, the goal is to create closed and regenerative loops of materials. For the packaging industry these translates into a “reduce, reuse, recycle“ approach. This calls for new business models and packaging structures that increase utilization rates and recyclability of materials. “To realize a Circular Economy, we need to fundamentally rethink packaging based on Design for Less and Design for Recycling solutions”, adds Marm. Design for Less means meeting the packaging demand with using less plastics by eliminating packaging components, substituting plastics with renewable materials such as paper and introducing new business models for re-use or sharing concepts. Design for Recycling aims at increasing the recyclability of packaging by rethinking its design, for example by moving from multi-material to mono-plastic packaging or phasing out of materials like PVC. With wrapper-less ice cream, paper-packed snack bars, re-fillable packs or mono-plastic packaging there are already some greatly improved packaging solutions entering the market.

Inks and varnishes play an important enabling role in a Circular Economy. In addition to the branding of the packaging, the technical functionalities of inks support all three levers in terms of reduction, reuse and recycling of packaging. “Through new ink and varnish applications, we have the opportunity to close the technical performance gaps of recyclable mono-material packaging like paper and mono-plastic and support high quality recyclates,” explains Marm. Today, Siegwerk already has a strong track record in
customer-specific development projects for circular packaging solutions that either increase recyclability, allow composting or reduce the need for plastic use and other non-renewable raw materials. With its functional and technical understanding of inks and varnishes combined with its strong partner network and integrated know-how along the packaging value chain, Siegwerk is well equipped to support customers towards a more circular model. Moreover, the company is actively driving the transformation in the packaging industry by contributing its ink expertise to different industry initiatives like e.g. CEFLEX or the Circular Economy Initiative Deutschland (CEID) to join forces along the entire value chain and help realize a sustainable future.

Driving future business growth

By establishing new online services like the Vendor Managed Inventory System MyInkroom, the online customer portal mySiegwerk or the webshop for sheetfed offset inks, Siegwerk has significantly expanded its digital offering over the years increasing efficiencies and enhancing the overall customer journey. Today, Siegwerk belongs to the pioneers within the printing industry embracing digitalization across all business areas. Next to the standardization and automation of IT tools, the company is strategically looking into the potential of big data and artificial intelligence for improving production cycles and gaining further efficiencies. With the recent opening of Europe’s largest fully automated production facility for printing inks in Siegburg, Germany, the company has laid an optimal foundation for future production demand.

Next to data-driven innovation and the digitalization of processes to further drive future growth, Siegwerk is driving the development of new business models, with services and platforms leveraging its ink and packaging know-how. Therefore, the company founded the new subsidiary Siegwerk Ventures to build up new ventures as new strategic pillars for Siegwerk’s future and generate new relevant revenue streams. “It’s all about extending our core business by creating growth in new market segments beyond selling ink,” explains Felix Bischopink, Head of Siegwerk Ventures. Thus, his team is looking into the complete packaging lifecycle from design through production to recycling , where Siegwerk’s core capabilities and know-how can be combined with digital opportunities to establish new and circular business models in the packaging industry.

Achieving more together

Siegwerk’s presences at components 2020 and drupa 2020 will both be touch points for discussions and conversations about future trends and current solutions for packaging and label printing. “In order to advance packaging for a circular and digital world we need to work even closer together to test new ideas across the entire industry,” says Dr. Bettina Horenburg, Director Corporate Communications at Siegwerk. “Therefore, we want to bring people together at our booth to jointly ‘rethINK packaging’ and develop innovative ideas to meet future packaging and printing trends.” As part of the company’s Touchpoint Packaging partnership visitors can also listen to expert talks and panel discussions with Siegwerk experts at drupa giving insights into packaging printing trends especially focusing on circular economy solutions and the power of digitalization.

At both trade shows the company will present its extensive ink and service portfolio including the latest developments and innovations for packaging and label printing. Visitors will be able to experience the wide-ranging application possibilities of Siegwerk’s ink solutions at:

  • components by interpack (May 7-13, 2020): hall 18, booth E01
  • drupa (June 16-26, 2020): hall 3, booth A62

?By providing a combination of best-in-class ink performance, high product safety and a holistic understanding of packaging, Siegwerk is always supporting its customers to address upcoming trends by meeting their individual needs with cutting-edge ink solutions and service.