In his editorial leader from issue 5 (August/September) 2023, David Pittman welcomes the return of Labelexpo Europe and the wider packaging industry’s continued growth.

Forgive me for being a Positive Percy, rather than a Negative Nelly.

Across the following pages, you’ll read plenty that showcases the route to riches for many using digital print for packaging.

Take our comprehensive pre-show coverage of Labelexpo Europe 2023, for example. Even with

many of the presses presented far from ‘new’ – let’s not forget the impact a global health crisis had on the industry – there’s a whole host of hardware, software and solutions [!…#IYKYK] to be on show that will give attendees food for thought on how they can elevate their production to the next level through the application of inkjet and toner-based technologies.

Then there’s our annual extended coverage of inkjet. From those already using the process to the applications opening up to its potential, the hardware and solutions being developed to increase its suitability and usability, and how it can and must dovetail with analogue processes for the benefit of the industry, it’s hard not to be titillated by the opportunities.

Whilst industry statistics and timelines are hotly debated and contested, not least because of the aforementioned global health crisis but also the figurative and literal long-term sustainability of the industry, they nonetheless provide a very real and even tangible outlook upon which to make predictions and choose the right horse to back. That’s not to say they’re infallible. Far from it. Trust me as someone who has spent the last decade fielding reports and statistics from myriad sources that claim and cite X, Y and Z about the print and packaging industries.

My inbox is full of them, with enough content combined to publish a regular magazine [now there’s an idea]. However, there’s only a handful I given credence to and integrate their findings into my thinking and editorial process, before regurgitating back out as valuable content for the industry*. This provides context and clarity to such statistics and timelines that in their raw state could potential prove to be problematic.

It’s also why I’m delighted we’re able to share with you the work of Keypoint Intelligence through its State of the Industry report series. This uses a research methodology that provides qualitative data, which as Kevin Karstedt, who is working on the five separate research projects, describes, ‘yields a clear understanding of what is actually happening in the field, both good and not so good.

‘It gives users and developers alike a perspective of what is working and what needs to be done differently in order to succeed in the market.’

Context and perspective are key for me when it comes to editing a magazine such as Digital Labels & Packaging and are why I’m happy and content to bring such positive information to you on a regular basis.

Happy reading.

This opinion article was first published in issue 5 (August/September) 2023 of Digital Labels & Packaging, which you can read online here; register here to receive future issues of the magazine