Gary Stockenstroom, product manager for Fujifilm Graphic Communication South Africa, outlines packaging trends, what the future of packaging looks like, and how South Africa measures up to the global market.

Stockenstroom said the integration of digital inkjet printbars into existing printing lines is the most exciting development. ‘The ink being jetted is water-based and has a minimal environmental impact, and this includes the flexible packaging application. It’s more than variable data barcodes in small sections of the print, it is 1200 x 1200dpi full colour prints.

In terms of what the future of packaging looks like, Stockenstroom emphasised on sustainability. ‘Currently, the attitude is to print everything ‘cheap and nasty’. What printers don’t realise is that this attitude is working everyone out of business. It is unsustainable, and we need to be educating print buyers.’

In terms of how South Africa compares to the international market in adopting and using the latest packaging technologies, he believes that South Africa is pushing on with old technologies and doing things the same old way. ‘It is time to invest in the latest equipment, automate, clean up shop and offer a new packaging message to the industry,’ said Stockenstroom.

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