New Special Forum Touchpoint Sustainability Proves: The Print and Paper Industry has Already Made Huge Gains in Sustainability

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New Special Forum Touchpoint Sustainability Proves: The Print and Paper Industry has Already Made Huge Gains in Sustainability

As a central forum at drupa 2024 which does not depend on any single supplier, from 28 May to 7 June the new Touchpoint Sustainability (tps) will for the first time focus on the holistic role of the print and paper industry within the global sustainable transformation. The industry has made major achievements, which is however often overlooked. Around 30 exhibitors will present pioneering best practice examples from all areas of the value chain, sometimes featuring several exhibits. In doing so, they provide both an overview of the status quo as well as attractive perspectives for the future. The more than 400 m² booth, which is dialogue platform and show room at once, will be hosted and designed by the German industrial association VDMA Printing and Paper Technology.

Print and paper are important parts of our world: Many sophisticated technologies from mechanical engineering and plant construction are part of their production. And it is these who also guarantee the quality and safety of processes during production and their sustainability. Digitalisation and artificial intelligence are key factors, not only with regard to the transformation process of the industry, but also for scaling effects. This makes them especially relevant for central goals like increased energy efficiency and improved waste avoidance.

drupa is the industry’s globally leading trade fair. As a platform for the exchange of ideas, discussions and transfer of knowledge, it is the place to find out how sustainability, digitalisation and technological innovations will affect the future of the print and paper industry. Forums that are open to several exhibitors, like the Touchpoint Sustainability, are very special points of attraction”, says Dr. Andreas Pleßke, Chairman of the Board and CEO at Koenig & Bauer and drupa president, describing the importance of the trade fair and the Touchpoint Sustainability.

At the special forum, very different stakeholders like manufacturers, scientists or brand owners together demonstrate how transformation can succeed across the industry by using technology that is ready for the future. The spectrum of companies participating in the exhibition and in the programme on stage ranges from industry giants like Epson, HP, Koenig & Bauer, Kurz, Heidelberger Druckmaschinen, Müller Martini or Voith down to specialised start-ups.

With regard to sustainability, the joint exhibition by different companies and the high quality accompanying programme on stage make Touchpoint Sustainability one of the highlights of drupa 2024. More than this, it offers young talents seeking passionate and forward-looking employers a valuable insight into the industry – which is investing on a large scale in order to become “enablers” and support customers in managing their challenges and unlocking new potentials on the market.

“With the Touchpoint Sustainability we are dealing with a very important topic for the entire print and paper industry. This is where the VDMA, its members and other important companies in this sector demonstrate their great dedication to possible solutions for the numerous challenges. The concept to have students as partners for talks and discussions at the entire booth is intended to make young people more interested in our industry”, says Thomas Schiemann, member of the board of management at VDMA Printing and Paper Technology, who is responsible to the VDMA for the project ‘Touchpoint Sustainability’.

A discussion forum for new solutions

The exhibition area of the Touchpoint is divided according to the different areas of the added value chain – raw materials, production, usage and recycling – and according to the time factor: What is already available on the market? Where does the development lead? The focus is on related issues such as the consumption of energy and resources during production processes, use of material and printing inks, recycling of colours or finishing processes that do not harm the environment. Possible approaches for solutions are demonstrated using relevant use-cases. What starts with increased efficiency, digital solutions, climate neutrality and circular economy soon reaches meeting regulatory standards and introduces novel business models.

Well-known speakers from politics and business

Apart from the extensive exhibition of best practices, visitors can expect an attractive accompanying programme. Included are different speakers from politics and business management, but also product developers, scientists and further experts.

Each of the eleven days at the trade fair offers eight to ten items from the agenda distributed over the entire booth. The total of more than 100 items reflect almost every topic addressed at the trade fair. Last but not least, players from other industries and their applications are to be given a platform that will support cooperation, exchange of ideas and partnerships. The varied programme is divided into different formats like keynotes, lectures and panel discussions. One of the highlights are the daily offers in the late afternoon, away from the stage: Here, different experts and representatives answer questions about their personal views on sustainability. Further, there is a special format in which different co-exhibitors are interviewed directly about their pieces on show.

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