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FLEXO Magazine : September 2014
A New Definition For Labels FINAT Congress Debates Changing Influences, Technologies THE HAGUE, e Netherlands--- e label industry is no longer a separate and de nable niche in the broader eld of packaging print. It has a new and extended pro le as a provider of many things: • Product decoration • Brand identity • Product data • Smartphone interaction • Track and trace and authentication data • Packaging itself Members of Féderation INternationale des fabricants et transformateurs d'Adhésifs et ermocollants sur papiers et autres supports (FINAT), the international trade association for self adhesive labeling and related industries, convened in June in Monte Carlo for its 2014 annual con- gress, to address what it dubbed " e Battle for Shelf Appeal." Keynote speaker Rik Olthof explained the essence of branding, showing how important the look and feel of a product are to its shelf appeal. Next on the agenda was an overview of trends in French label markets, delivered by Dominique Durant-des-Aulnois, currently vice president of the French label association Union Nationale des Fabri- cants d'Etiquettes Adhésives (UNFEA) and general manager of label makers Paragon Identi cation, assisted by label trade journalist, pub- lisher and consultant John Penhallow. Most UNFEA label converters reported dramatic sales increases, powered by the need to be di erent, export to other regions and innovate. Two valuable panel discussions followed. First, representatives from key aspects of the international industry supply chain---Krones, Avery Dennison and Karlville Development---came together to debate the "battle of decoration technologies." en it was time to hear the brand owners' viewpoint on "the future of product decoration" via a second panel discus- sion featuring representatives from L'Oréal, Lego, Reckitt Benckiser and G3 Enterprises. Day two began with the topic of innovation for labeling and packaging pro t, which was addressed by Mike Ferrari, founder and president of Ferrari Innovation Solutions and for 32 years a key gure in Procter & Gamble management. He illustrated his talk with examples of how the shopper's journey is changing and how solutions for engaging them are also evolving. "If people are in the virtual world," he noted, "how can we make them buy products in the real world?" For P&G, the rst time a consumer makes eye contact with a pack- aged product on a retail shelf is a di erent matter, in a world where 70 percent of purchasing decisions are no longer made in store and where the world's 6 billion cellphones interact with smart features on packaging. Today, a product's rst sales message might be anything from a friend's Facebook message to a printable coupon. It is a sign of the times that, in last year's earnings call, Procter & Gamble's chairman and CEO estimated that the company now spends up to 35 percent of its marketing budget on digital media. Mass production has also spawned mass customization, such as per- sonalized Coca-Cola bottles, featuring popular male and female rst names, which have graced retail shelves in 32 countries across Europe and represent the longest digital packaging printrun ever. 30 FLEXO | SEPTEMBER 2014 INDUSTRY INDICATORS