Delocalisation to low-cost countries
The import of printed products from low-cost countries has increased drastically over the last decade which puts pressure on the industry in Europe.
Orders for products with a long time to market (coffee table books, art books etc.) are increasingly being produced in East Asian countries. This aggressive competition together with other structural challenges threatens the profitability of European printing companies.
European Commission study Competitiveness of the European Graphic Industry
The "Competitiveness of the European Graphic Industry" was published in 2007 and financed by the European Commission. The study was initiated by Intergraf. The report gives recommendations on how printers can stay competitive in a global market.
Intergraf and its member federations were deeply involved in the making of the study.
Innovation and R&D
New technologies are integral to the industry. They give printers the opportunity to widen their offers and services to clients. These services rely on having the latest available technologies on the market and printers being aware of them.
Intergraf stays informed on latest trends and liaises with members to ensure new technologies are visible. Innovations in the printing industry include: QR codes, web-to-print, printed electronics and of course, the ever improving efficiency of printing machines. By keeping up to date with these developments Intergraf is in a position to help members and companies innovate.
Quality standards in print production
Intergraf promotes the use of ISO standards in print production. This ensures high quality of the end product and a guarantee of predictability from one job to the next.
Quality standards, mostly used in offset print production, allow the printer to print at the highest possible quality with their existing equipment. There are a number of standards applicable to different parts of the production, such as ISO 12647 (printing process control), ISO 2846 (standard ink set) and ISO 15930 (standard data format PDF/X). On the request of member federations, Intergraf aims to centralise information on these standards and inform printers about their benefits.
Printing Standards Network
This network consists of experts on standards in print production from over Europe. It holds meetings to share experiences and best practices. The network aims to raise awareness about printing standards.