Technology is a key driver of change and opportunity. It’s probably been that way since the beginning of human history, but I wasn’t around back then to know for sure. I do know from what I’ve seen in my lifetime and from what I remember about history, technology advances have been at the root of some of the greatest societal changes of all time.
Even though colossal changes of that magnitude don’t come along in every generation, technology plays a key part in our everyday lives. It is also true that technology advances are coming at a faster and faster clip.
This issue of packagePRINTING includes several articles that are representative of how advanced technology applications can be used to carve out business success. These include articles about screening technologies, RFID, specialty inks, and shrink-film labeling.
New screening developments have delivered graphic improvements in both offset and flexo printing. The advent of FM screening, along with hybrid (combined AM and FM) screening has brought graphic quality to new levels.
RFID is probably the highest tech of all the hi-tech capabilities that package printers are looking at these days. It is pushing printers into the realm of semiconductor and antenna applications, along with first-generation equipment for converting and quality control.
Specialty inks are a fascinating area. High-technology materials are opening up doors to activism for a wide range of printed packaging—it’s not just a pretty face anymore.
The cover story is on Seal-It Corp., a printer that focuses on shrink-film labeling. Shrink labeling is a fast-growing segment that puts increased technical demands on design, prepress, inks, and the printing process.
These topics are representative of the impact technology is having in package printing. For the printer, they are examples of opportunities that are readily available to be incorporated into a business model. But “readily available” doesn’t mean easy. There’s very little low-hanging fruit anymore. The fruit is there, but it takes a committed focus on technology to get it harvested.