Options abound in today’s ever-changing label industry.
A recent study conducted by label industry market research firm LPC, Inc., determined that new digital press installations in North America are growing at 11.9% per year. The firm estimates the rate of new conventional press installations are contracting at an annual 8-9% clip. Taking into account these forcasted rates, LPC believes that in the year 2020, one in four new label presses sold in the US and Canada will be conventional, and three out of four will be digital. Times sure have changed.
A fact that has emerged since the proliferation of digital printing, is that digital technology adoption is not one size-fits-all. What is a great fit for one label company may vastly differ from others. Specialization, location, finishing needs and markets served all play key roles in digital press adoption decisions.
Whether it’s EP or inkjet, a desktop printer for a few thousand dollars, or a hybrid production class press with a 7-figure pricetag, there have never been more options for both first-time digital technology adopters or longtime users with multiple machines. Some products target brand owners, suggesting they’d benefit from producing labels themselves. Some are entry-level priced for the small to medium sized label company. Others are even designed with speed in mind to compete with flexo operations.
There are many, many vendors now, with some offering several different machines. While the information that follows is not all-inclusive, it’s L&NW’s attempt to share the capabilities, benefits and specifications of digital and hybrid label printers and presses on the market today. Suppliers appear in alphabetical order.