21 Feb 2024

Shaping the change towards sustainability at drupa 2024

dupa forum touchpoint sustainability: Shaping the change.

From 28 May to 7 June, 2024, the print industry will focus on sustainability as the German industrial association VDMA Printing and Paper Technology and drupa together invite to discuss the future.

On an exhibition floor of 400 m2, the touchpoint sustainability will present a multitude of best-practice examples and innovative solutions by the most important stakeholders for increased sustainability along the entire added value chain of the industry.

The touchpoint sustainability is the forum by drupa in which the print and paper industry deals with its role within a sustainable transformation, and which offers a unique overview of the current state of the industry and its medium and long-term developments. Technologies from mechanical and system engineering are especially important in this context, above all with regard to quality, process safety during production and sustainability. Digitalisation and AI play key parts, in order to accelerate the transformation process in the print and paper industry and to be able to realise scaling effects. The touchpoint sustainability addresses these issues: Manufacturers, industry players, brands and users together show how the change can become reality. In order to map a cross-section of the industry which is as representative as possible, the list of companies included ranges from industry heavy-weights like Koenig & Bauer, Heidelberger Druckmaschinen, Müller Martini or Voith all the way to highly specialised start-ups.

Future perspectives on a green transformation

How can you for example lower the consumption of energy and resources during production? How can the use of material and printing ink be reduced to a minimum, how can inks of all kinds be recycled and how can finishing be accomplished in a way that is gentle to the environment? Questions like these are being discussed at the touchpoint sustainability and presented in an easy-to-understand way that features a large number of use cases. Increases in efficiency, digital solutions, climate neutrality and circular economy are only some of the developments which will enter the spotlight at the touchpoint in Hall 14. They promise new business models and will shape the future of the global print and paper industry.

As a specialised panel forum, the touchpoint sustainability is not a classic trade fair booth. By contrast, it offers an industry-wide overview of the status quo, the challenges and opportunities of the overarching global trend of sustainability. This makes it a showroom and platform for dialogue at once. “drupa is THE globally leading trade fair of our industry. As a platform for the exchange of ideas, for discussions and transfer of knowledge, it is the place at which to find out how mega-trends like sustainability, digitalisation and technological innovations will affect the future of the print and paper industry. Cross-sectional forums like the touchpoint sustainability are central points of contact for this. Because more sustainability is best achieved if we all work together on the necessary innovations”, says Dr. Andreas Pleßke, chairman of the drupa committee and CEO of Koenig & Bauer, with regard to the importance of drupa and the touchpoint sustainability.

Interactive platform for exchange

Next to the varied exhibition of showpieces from the entire print and paper industry, visitors to the touchpoint sustainability can expect a comprehensive stage programme as the industry wants to face the debate concerning its measures and goals. Of special interest to the industry, and subject to systematic recording, will be the honest opinion of visitors concerning the state of solutions along the entire added value chain in the year 2024, and their perspective for 2028. Further, players from other industries are to be given a platform to strengthen cooperations, exchange ideas and enter into partnerships.

The shared exhibition by many representatives of the industry and the high-calibre programme on stage make the touchpoint sustainability a central point of contact for everyone interested in information on, or discussing the issue of sustainability at drupa. At the same time, the touchpoint offers Young Talents who are looking for active employers willing to shape the future a unique insight into this highly relevant and exciting industry.

“I am looking forward to presenting this important topic in this extraordinary dimension at the touchpoint sustainability to the entire print and paper industry. The VDMA and its members are very aware of the related challenges, which is why we want to show how much effort has already been made to achieve possible solutions, but also, to show what still lies before us. The concept to have students as partners for talks and discussions at the entire booth is intended to appeal especially to young people and make them excited about 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."