In the print industry the very name Drupa is certainly a very well-known one. Once every four years, the movers and shakers in the world of print attend an exhibition encompassing all aspects of the Graphic Art’s industry, including packaging, Litho offset, cold set, digital, 3d printing and much more. This year the venue was Dusseldorf.
As someone in their mid-20’s who was attending their first Drupa exhibition it was an eye opening experience. The sheer size and scale was unbelievable. It was interesting to note that there were many people of all nationalities of an age similar to my own, all interested to see how print was adapting to an increasingly digital world. I for one was not disappointed. The big names of the offset sector were of course still there in force, particularly sheet fed, but the one area that was the real source of curiosity was digital printing. With big companies like HP, Fujifilm, Müller Martini and Kodak there was no shortage of innovation along with interesting new developments. Live demonstrations on full sized printing presses were to be found in all of the halls with an impressive amount of pageantry!
What did all this mean for someone who was primarily an offset litho printer? Digital is very exciting with some incredible potential but for the time being the technology for us is not quite ready to replace any of our existing presses, certainly for our current work mix. That said, with further innovations, the ability to print on more paper types, increases in speed and output, it is certainly not inconceivable that digital won’t find a place at our site in Bourne.
All in all I am very interested to see how the next few years will develop and I look forward to seeing how, and when, these innovations will find their place at this very exciting time in our industry.