The seven winners of the Label Industry Global Awards 2023 – including UPM Raflatac for its label made of ‘ocean-bound’ plastic, CARTES and its automated digital embellishment line, and LINTEC’s polyester-based adhesive – have been announced at Labelexpo Europe 2023.

The Label Industry Global Awards are in their eighteenth edition and recognise the innovations achieved by individuals and organisations in the label and package printing sector.

Chaired by Andy Thomas-Emans, strategic director of the Labels & Packaging Group, the panel consisted of FINAT president Philippe Voet, TLMI chariman Tim McDonough, Labels & Labeling editor Chelsea McDougall, Label & Narrow Web editor Greg Hrinya, and Etiq & Pack editor Jean Poncet.

Mercian Labels and its partners SCREEN, CERM, and ABG received the new Team Achievement Award for their six-year ‘lights-out’ converting project. This award is open to industry suppliers, converters, and end users and seeks to highlight the merits of teamwork.

Honouring the development of a supplier or converter company’s specific innovation in 2022, the Innovation Award for companies with up to 300 employees went to CARTES for its fully automated, end-to-end digital embellishment line. This combines inkjet embellishment, digital metallisation, and laser die cutting modules.

Meanwhile, LINTEC’s polyester-based adhesive won the Innovation Award for companies with over 300 employees. The panel expects this development to enable the clean separation of PET container waste and lend a hand in the development of a circular economy.

The Rising Star Award went to Tommy Schouten from Geostick – commended for his “drive and passion for process optimisation and continuous improvement which marked him out as a future industry leader.”

UPM Raflatac’s Ocean Action Label, received the Sustainability Award. It, too, is expected to help create a commercial market by utilising ‘ocean-bound’ plastic. Meanwhile, Baker Labels was recognised for its culture of “continuous learning, inclusivity and an active participation in a wide range of charitable and local community initiatives” with the Converter of the Year Award.

Additionally, GEW founder Malcolm Rae was given the Global Achievement Award. This intends to recognise contributions made by a high-profile industry influencer and motivator to the promotion and growth of the label industry.

“Malcolm Rae is a worthy winner of the Global Achievement Award,” said the judging panel. “This recognises his unique contribution, through GEW, the company he founded, to the narrow web industry’s transition to UV curing and to the subsequent technological development of the UV curing industry.”

Thomas-Emans continued: “We have been very impressed by the high quality of entries received for this year’s Label Industry Global Awards.

“I would like to thank everybody who submitted nominations and on behalf of the judging panel, I would like to congratulate all the winners and finalists. The full range of innovation, team energy and powerful sustainability initiatives shone through during the judging process.”

Jade Grace, managing director at Labelexpo Global Series, added: “I would like to congratulate all of this year’s Label Industry Global Awards finalists and winners. I would also like to thank our sponsors – Gallus, Bobst, Durst, GEW, Flint Group and Labels & Labeling magazine – for their support in making these awards possible and supporting innovation in our industry.”

Also on display at Labelexpo is a CPET shrink label from EMSUR, Siegwerk, Karlville, and SK microworks; Domino Printing Sciences’ N610i-R digital retrofit module to integrate digital printing technology into existing hybrid printing flexographic lines; and H.B. Fuller’s range of pressure-sensitive adhesives.

Henkel and CCL Label have won their own award from Alexander Watson Associates for a pack that utilises EcoFloat, a sleeve technology seeking to improve the recycling of PET bottle bodies.

If you liked this article, you might also enjoy:

The Lidl approach to packaging sustainability

How did Brazil achieve its 100% aluminium can recycling rate – and can it be replicated in the EU?

Experts have their say on the EU’s Packaging and Packaging Waste Directive revisions

A deep dive into the most important packaging sustainability trends and solutions