The sixth meeting of the L9, an informal group of the world's leading label industry trade associations, took place on April 3 in Tokyo. The L9 was established at Labelexpo Asia in 2009 as a way to unite label communities around the globe, and to serve as a resource to the label community at large. Subsequent meetings were held at the FINAT Technical Seminar in Barcelona, Labelexpo North Americas in Chicago, the TLMI Converter Meeting in Florida, and Labelexpo Europe in Brussels. The meeting in Tokyo included the attendance of the leaders of seven L9 member associations. In addition to the hosting association-JFLP (Japan Federation of Label Printing Industries) - delegations from FINAT (Europe), TLMI (Tag and Label Manufacturers Institute of North America), LATMA (Label and Tag Manufacturers Association of Australia), LMAI (Label Manufacturers Association of India), PEIAC (Printing Equipment Industries Association of China), and Amctiq (Association Mexicana de Etiqueteros) were in attendance. Additional members who were not present include ABIEA of Brazil and SALMA of New Zealand.
Kurt Walker, president of FINAT, says that since the organization was established in Shanghai, it lias been growing stronger." lie L9 started as an informal gee together of global label associations in Shanghai at the end of 2009. At that time--on the initiative of Tarsus, FIN AT andTLMI - eight associations from across the globe were invited for a meeting to exchange experiences, discuss common problems and explore the possibility of closer interaction in the future," Walter says.
While Walker expected that many of the topics addressed would be relevant to each association s local community, he was surprised to find that many of the challenges each association faced were found across the board.
"First of all, many of the suppliers offering materials and technology to the label and narrow web industry are global. A growing proportion of our members' customers are operating on a global scale. In response to all of this, our respective members are reaching out on a global scale, to adopt global standards, share best practices, establish global partnerships, expand their B2D network and promote the versatility of our products to the global market in a consistent manner. And last but not least, they share the same corporate responsibility towards the planet. For example, a number of recycling initiatives have been developed and are being deployed. However, it is crucial to keep the momentum and create critical mass.
"FINAT has identified recycling and sustainability as key co the continued success of the self-adhesive label industry. This is exactly why we have re-established the FINAT recycling project and why the L9 has dedicated an entire session to this...