Happy New Year!

In just over four months most of us will be heading off to Düsseldorf for a few days – or even a couple of weeks – for the Olympics of print shows – drupa 2004.

Just what will converters be hoping to find at the exhibition this time round? As the converting media partner Converting Today will continue to target drupa developments in the sector in the coming months leading up to the May 6-19 exhibition.

Certainly packaging production is extremely well recognized as being of real importance in the world of prepress, print and finishing by the exhibition organizer. As managing director of the VDMA Dr Wilfried Schäfer says: “drupa has always been the trade fair which determines the innovation cycle of our industry.”

That is just as true in converting as in commercial printing. Expect to see further advances in total workflow –digitally networked from pre to post press; sleeve developments for flexo, gravure cylinders and exciting digital printing options.

Whatever the choices made by buyers – converters will all be looking at how they can best serve their customers in the coming decades. By offering something different – a target on lead times of two weeks for repeat orders and two to three weeks down to 24 hours for new orders for short runs – Amcor has set the standard for what is possible in gravure differentiation.

The fascinating story of how they went about operation ‘Forge’ and the investment at S&R is told in a feature in this issue.