Packaging Industry Adopts Digital

According to a recently released research report from InfoTrends studying the market for digital color printing in the packaging industry, the value of packaging-related print from color POD systems and wide format systems together amounted to $1.95 billion globally in 2009, and that total is expected to grow to $4.05 billion by 2014. Almost all of that value is attributable to the printing of full and spot color “prime” labels for use in decorating foods, beverages, drugs, and other consumer products. Other applications, however, such as folding cartons, flexible packaging, and even metal cans are starting to use digital color printing. Many companies and multiple technologies are becoming involved.

Digital color printing has its own ecosystem within the packaging industry. Color electrophotographic and inkjet technologies, including wide format inkjet, are at the core of that ecosystem and they are connected to other parts of it. Ecosystems in the industry often change over time, and that is true for the ecosystem that surrounds digital color printing of packaging.

In less than 15 years, the digital color ecosystem has grown from nearly nothing and became a significant part of the overall packaging industry. Looking ahead, the digital color ecosystem will grow and change to have a continually greater role in packaging. In regard to inkjet, given its recent, rapid growth and the number of products set for launch in 2010, InfoTrends believes that this technology will be increasingly influential in future markets. The preceding is excerpted from a report entitled Digital Color Printing in Packaging: The Ecosystem. To learn more about this report, visit

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