Projected label-purchasing volumes across Europe are lower than they were one year ago, both for conventional and digitally printed labels. And while 65% of respondents to FINAT’s biannual survey still say their label volumes will increase in 2019, the share of respondents expecting a decrease this year went up from 3% at the end of 2017, to 18% a month ago.
The Hague, Netherlands-based label making trade group released the 2018 Winter Edition of its FINAT RADAR report this week. The survey among more than 80 brand-owners and packaging buyers, and follow-up one-on-one interviews with a select number of them, shows European label customers are approaching 2019 more cautiously than they did 2018.
The survey results indicate a slowdown in line with an uncertain economic climate in the face of Brexit, political uncertainty in the Eurozone and the possible escalation of the trade dispute between the US and China. FINAT’s quarterly European labelstock statistics reveal a continued slowdown in H2 2018, reaching a volume growth rate in m2 of only 1.4% for the year compared to 2017. This number breaks down to 0.9% for pressure-sensitive paper roll materials (mainly due to continued strong demand for direct-thermal materials) and 3.5% for PP, PE and other high-end, non-paper roll materials.
Respondents were surveyed on matters like label purchasing volume growth projections, label vendor loyalty, migration from p-s to other label formats, linerless labels, the most important factors brands consider for printed-packaging decoration, as well as the possibility of CPG brands printing labels in-house.