Brand owners tell label printers what they want at LMAI meet

In a knowledge-sharing session, organised by Label Manufacturers’ Association of India (LMAI) on 30 March 2018 in New Delhi, representatives from major brands encouraged label converters to work towards fast delivery of innovative, economic and sustainable solutions, as this is what brand owners need.

02 Apr 2018 | By Rahul Kumar

The event was attended by around 100 people from the industry, including 47 label printers, seven major suppliers, four brand owners and other.

During his presentation, Barun Banerjee of Nestle India said for the user industry, environment sustainability is the biggest concern. “We need to make our labels sustainable and recyclable. Our packaging must be environment oriented. That’s why in-mould came into the picture and is growing at 3.5% CAGR,” he said.

According a report, pressure-sensitive or self-adhesive label has the maximum market share, followed by wet-glue. The global printed labels market is said be worth 41.6 billion USD by 2019 in pressure sensitive and adhesive labels.  

While Banerjee stressed that green initiatives and new technologies will be game-changers in the future, he named visual and tactile changes as megatrends. Also, digital printing is going to play key role in future, especially for labels.

Ameya Pradhan of Dabur India stressed on creative solutions and fast delivery. Mnemonics is a key ingredient in labels design and manufacturing, he said. Plus, turnaround time is critical from a brand’s perspective.

Pradhan said as packaging and labels are the first introduction of a product/brand with customers, it has been observed that customer usually spend more time with interactive labels in a supermarket than vertical or horizontal labels.

He added that in the FMCG sector, 85% labels are PS. The same is the case with Dabur. This is followed by shrink sleeves and in-mould labels.

According to Pradhan, disruption is the need of the hour, where with the help of innovative packaging, a brand can create a specialised product. He gave the example of bottled water brand Evian. While traditional brands sell bottled water at Rs 20, Evian, with the help of packaging and promotions, sell per bottle at Rs 500 or so.

While it’s difficult to get feedback from label users, Rahul Bhargava of Sun Pharma said the company visits hospitals, medical shops and other places, get feedback and then develop packaging according to requirements. He said one of the major requirements from doctors that the packages should have way to remind the patients to take the medicines on time as patients often tend to forget to take their medicines.

Medical shops owners, on the other hand, want differentiations on SKUs at the level of packaging design.

“We focus on compliance packaging. According to our studies with customers, stability of a product is critical. We have to design a product in such manner that the life of the product will not deteriorate.

Label is the most important component in pharma packaging because globally 70% of recalls take place due to defective labels. Appropriate label is brand owners’ responsibility,” Bhargava said.

Kaushik Shah of Pepsico India said brands need some new developments from label converters to add value to its brands. The focus should be on FOM, the first moment of truth — when a consumer looks at a label, there must be some connect.

He also urged label converters to work towards reducing the delivery time and price of innovation.

“We need technology which enhances customer engagement,” he said. “In this, digital printing is helpful as it enables us to print multiple designs.”

Today, label designs change every month. In this, Shah said, label converters must work with brand owners to make the process smooth. “We run our bottling plant at 600 bottles per minute. Globally, we have lines from 800 to 1,200 bottles per minute. If there are some issues with the labels, then the line will be jammed and it will be a huge loss for me. Therefore, a label converter must ensure quality inspection and also visit the packaging plants,” he said.

According to packaging consultant Deepak Manchanda, design of a product and a label must be for delight and desire. At the same time, information on a label is a critical thing. “We have to bring such designs where we can put information within appealing design,” he said. “You have to expand the pack from shelf to the communication. Communication brings customers back to the pack. The relationship between brands and customers must be intimate.”

In his concluding remarks, Kuldip Goel, president, LMAI, said the association is working towards a dedicated platform to share knowledge among different stakeholders of the industry, which can help label converters grow. Therefore, he insisted that the event was for members only and that too with prior registration.

During the event, LMAI announced that it is going to launch a common sales platform among its members for additional raw materials and machines. On this platform, any member can submit the details of their machines and materials. It will be an online platform, which will be officially launched on 15 May 2018.