Intergraf – News in Brief – 6/12/2018


26/11/2018, Social Dialogue Working Group, Brussels

In the final Social Dialogue meeting of the year, Intergraf joined colleagues from UNI Europa Graphical and the European Commission to discuss issues relating to the state of the industry, resources, major concerns, EU industrial policy, training for youth, employee engagement and attracting new workers to the industry. In a particularly interesting discussion, participants from Portugal, Italy, France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Finland, Germany, Spain, Sweden and Croatia presented the economic situation in their countries. You can find a summary of this discussion in Intergraf’s most recent Newsflash.

27/11/2018, Keep Me Posted EU Steering Committee Meeting, Brussels

In preparation for the upcoming European elections and subsequently new Commission and Parliament, the organisers of the Keep Me Posted EU campaign met to review the successes of the campaign so far and plan for future actions. A further high-level meeting will take place next week to define the campaign strategy for the upcoming years.

29/11/2018, STS BREF meeting, Brussels

The final technical meeting is taking place from 10 to 14 December in Seville. Industry aligned its position on common issues. Considering the large range of industries covered by the BREF, some general techniques apply to some industries but not all. Industry is aiming at clarifying in the BREF which techniques apply to which industry to prevent competent authorities having to go through all techniques for all sectors.

05/12/2018, CheMI meeting, Brussels

The members of CheMI met to discuss among others the interface between REACH and waste legislation, nanomaterials, titanium dioxide, authorisation for chromium trioxide. Similar to Intergraf, other industries are confronted with price increases of chemical-based raw materials due to the stringent environmental policy in China.


• 10/12/2018, EU Ecolabel review webinars with European Commission

• 11/12/2018, Meeting with Managing Director of Circle Media Group NL

• 14/12/2018, Keep Me Posted EU High-Level Strategy Meeting, Brussels

• 17/12/2018, European Liaison Forum, Brussels

• 18/12/2018, Security Printers Committee Meeting, Brussels

Intergraf Newsflash – December 2018

Intergraf Newsflash

Evening folks,
It’s the start of another month and that means another Newsflash from our friends at Intergraf (The European Federation for Print & Digital Communication). Pull the PDF from the link below, crack open something festive, and enjoy.

This issue includes –

Intergraf news:

  • Intergraf to coordinate COSME project on recruitment
  • Next Print Matters for the Future event in London
  • Register now for Packaging Conference 2019

EU news:

  • Gravure printing industry awaits decision on chromium trioxide
  • Draft Brexit agreement under discussion

Industry news:

  • 64% made online purchase after receiving printed advertising mail
  • National situations of printing industry presented in Social Dialogue
  • Power of Print Seminar inspires
  • “When it’s gone it’s gone. People need to be reminded now” Keep Me Posted
Intergraf Newsflash – December 2018

Intergraf Economic News – A story in graphs


I hope you folks like graphs. The latest missive from our friends in Europe, Intergraf (The European Federation for Print & Digital Communication), is a data-driven picture of the recent trends in the printing industry across the Eurozone.

Follow the link below to find the full package and consider how it might help you plot the year ahead.

Intergraf Economic News

The big picture for print and packaging in Europe

Following on from the recent meeting in Brussels, The Social Dialogue Working Group has released the minutes from a  session titled “Economic Situation of the Graphical Sector: Country Reports”.

The minutes are attached below as a PDF. If you’re curious about how our European colleagues and competitors are getting on in the current economic climate it’s worth cracking open and getting a top-level view of how things are shaping up in the industry.

Economic Situation of the Graphical Sector: Country Reports


Social Dialogue Working Group – Intergraf invitation

There will be a Social Dialogue Working Group meeting taking place at the Albert Borschette Congress Centre in Brussels on Monday 26th November to follow up on some of the topics discussed at the recent Plenary. I attach the draft agenda, for your information (this document is still being finalised so a further draft will be sent to participants in due course).


Should you wish  to attend this meeting, please let me know before the close of business tomorrow so I can register you in time. You must be registered by this deadline if you wish to be reimbursed by the Commission – reimbursement requests received after Tuesday will not be accepted.


Apologies for the short notice – as the plenary only recently took place, we did not have an agenda to share earlier. I hope some of you can still attend the meeting.


Kind regards,



Alison Grace

Communications & Social Affairs Officer



European Federation for Print & Digital Communication

Avenue Louise 130A | BE – 1050 Brussels

Tel.: +32 2 230 86 46 | Fax: +32 2 231 14 64 |

Intergraf Newsflash – November 2018

Intergraf Newsflash

Today we are delighted to announce a new, on-going collaboration with Intergraf (The European Federation for Print & Digital Communication). Every month Intergraf issue their Newsflash newsletter from their headquarters in Brussels. As part of our mission to promote communication between industry bodies, we are hosting these newsletters here as part of a regular series of news updates from our European colleagues.

See the link below to access the Intergraf Newsflash newsletter. Topics covered in the November newsletter include:

Intergraf news:

  • Packaging Conference 2019: are you registered yet?
  • Events
  • Factsheets

EU news:

  • Reduced VAT rates permitted on e-books and press
  • Single Use Plastics Directive progressing quickly

Industry news:

  • Putting industry at the core of the EU’s future
  • Paper recycling in Europe reaches 72.3%
  • Packaging Act regulates German printers
  • Books important for the future in Germany
  • Intergraf joins global print industry in China
  • Promoting the image of print

Intergraf Newsflash – November 2018

Golf Day – TABS Golf Society


“In September 1887 four men rowed across the channel which separates Malahide from the spur of land known locally as the island. Their mission – to survey the wilderness and assess its suitability as a golf course “.

Today, The Island Golf Club is a Championship links that has been a Regional Qualifier Course for The Open 2013 – 2017 and will host the Amateur Championship in 2019. And no need to row a boat to get there.

On Friday October 26 The Island will be the venue for the final outing of TABS Golf Society for 2018. A full timesheet is expected and early booking is advised.

Details are:
Venue: The Island Golf Club, Donabate
Date: Friday October 26
Tee Times: 10 am to 12 noon
Competition: Singles played in 4”s


Subscription for the day is €90 to include green fee and dinner. We expect to dine at 7pm and smart dress is requested.
To reserve a tee time please phone or text the TABS Hotline 087 915 1609 or email to the address below.
Let’s all hope for a fine day and good golf. Good company, as usual, is assured.

Best regards,

Brendan McCabe
Hon. Sec.

With one game to go the leaders in the 2018 Golfer of the Year are:
Dermot Downer (45pts), Joe Murphy (36pts),
Pat Reilly (35pts), Paul O’Farrell (33pts),

Portrait presentation

We were honored to be able to present a portrait of past IPF president Lorcán Ó hÓbáin to his lovely wife Anne.  Lorcán’s presence is deeply missed in the IPF and the DPPSkillnet, which he helped to create.  His picture will now join the Hall of Fame portraits in the National Print Museum book.

IPF President Diarmuid Dawson & Anne with portrait.

CEO of the National Print Museum Carla Marrinan and Anne.

Sustainability 101 – why Irish Print needs to take it seriously.

Sustainability is a hot topic, but what is it? How can it help us navigate the major problems we face as a global community and what opportunities does it have for businesses? In the course of this blog, we will address these topics and hopefully get a feel for how sustainable development can help us work towards a cleaner, more efficient future.

We are living in a period of enormous upheaval and change. Climate change, resource conservation and advancements in technology are the dominant factors shaping our future. While we struggle to provide for a growing, urbanising population, the limitations of the natural world can no longer be ignored. The need to balance our economic development with environmental protection has brought the Sustainability Business Model into the mainstream.

Sustainability is the concept of ‘meeting the needs of today without compromising the future generations’ abilities to meet their own needs’. It is a whole systems approach to planning a model that can continue indefinitely, involving Environmental, Economic & Social facets. Where no one factor should be considered separate or independent.

Human activity is the dominant influence on the natural environment. Through deforestation, farming, drilling, mining, landfills, dam-building and coastal reclamation we have altered 50% of the face of the planet. Our impact has been so immense that the current geological era is known as

The Age of Man (Anthropocene). Our mark on the globe is undeniable and irreversible.

Over the next two decades, the population is expected to reach nine billion people. We will need more energy, food, and water, to meet their basic needs, but we are already consuming resources and generating waste far beyond the Earth’s capacity to maintain a healthy, regenerative biosphere.

Resource restrictions are created by our mass consumption of raw materials and a heavy reliance on non-renewable energy, this is exacerbated by the effects of climate change. Changing weather is producing lower yields of crops. Higher temperatures and flash storms are limiting our access to fresh water.

As the population grows another 1 billion people are expected to enter the middle classes, while this is progress towards income equality, it will create a drive for more products, commodities, cars, and homes. To survive any further strain on already limited supplies we will have to make more with less, design out waste, move towards a circular economy and implement sustainable building & development practices.

Here’s where things begin to change for businesses, we can not continue with the same old ‘business as usual’ approach. Scarcity will drive up the prices of commodities and force businesses to reduce their energy consumption, water use, and reliance on non-renewable materials.

There is a growing pressure for businesses to factor the value of natural commodities into the price of producing and packaging their products. Considering the ‘cost to the environment’ will bring us closer to the true cost of a product. Successful businesses will be those that lead us away from the ‘take, make, dispose’ method. Instead, we need to adopt business models that strive to keep resources in the value chain by reusing and recycling components at the product’s end of life.

Turning waste into wealth presents massive opportunities for those willing to shift to an innovative business model. According to ‘Accenture’ the transition from a linear to circular economy presents a multi-trillion dollar opportunity.

Sustainability success requires a shift in normal business thinking, trading our short-term goals for long-term strategies. It also requires participation and collaboration on a large scale, acknowledging that we have a shared future and agreeing to work together to protect it.

The Paris Agreement is an example of a collective response to a global problem. Over 150 Nations have committed to long-term strategic measures to reduce global carbon emissions. The agreement offers a framework for achieving climate action goals. It defines ongoing mitigation strategies, highlights methods to minimise costs, and discusses financial schemes. It includes plans for energy, waste, transport, industry, forestry, and agriculture. This is the kind of whole systems approach that underlies the very ethos of sustainability, where all aspects must be considered together.

We are seeing a steady increase in businesses committing to 100% renewable energy (wind, solar, hydropower and geothermal) as a result of the Agreement. Developments in photovoltaic light to energy technology and improved battery storage are also accelerating the shift towards electric cars and integrated public transport solutions. With these factors combined, it appears that we are on the cusp of a clean energy revolution.

With the move towards zero carbon emissions, sustainability initiatives are on the rise. The International Trade Centre lists some 230 ‘Sustainability Standards Initiatives’ in areas such as business ethics, economic development, workers rights, and food safety. What was once a niche area now presents us with massive potential for growth and development.

American retail giant Walmart has become market leaders in Sustainable initiatives. Their aim was to reduce waste, cut emissions, and sustain the environment while remaining affordable. Keeping prices low was essential. Knowing that their customers could not afford the high prices of sustainable products they worked with their suppliers to create changes.

Logically speaking, it is far more efficient to tackle a problem at source, especially when it comes to waste reduction. The less you send into the market, the less you are relying on a wide group of individuals to dispose of their waste responsibly.

Walmart’s efforts to green their supply chain has had a positive knock-on effect, influencing the thousands of other businesses they deal with. The more they promote sustainability the more affordable it becomes.  So far they have succeeded in reducing their waste to landfill

by 80 %. They continue working towards a ‘zero waste’ goal. They have also committed to renewable energy, reducing their emissions by 20 million metric tonnes. This kind of social and environmental performance builds consumer trust, improves customer relations, garners public respect, and strengthens the brand’s image.

As one big company moves towards sustainable goals, it demands the same standard of conduct and transparency from its competitors. Customer demand will increase with the growing public awareness of the benefits of sustainable products. As people begin to vote with their wallets businesses will be required to meet certain standards in order to retain their customers.

In his book, ‘The Big Pivot’ Andrew S. Winston describes technology-driven demands for transparency as one of the major problems that modern businesses are facing. Every action can be traced and analysed. With the accelerated use of social media, the customer has the power to condone or condemn a business and to hold it accountable when it doesn’t meet expectations. Winston suggests turning this into an opportunity to create trust among your customer base, using the feedback to give you an understanding of what your customers’ needs really are.

Technology is not only driving transparency, it is changing the way we work and the type of work we do. Industrial automation has greatly reduced the need for human manual labour with robot technology becoming increasingly popular in the manufacturing field and presenting interesting opportunities for global clean up projects.

As technology continues to create massive change, we are left questioning the future of our work, what will the general worker’s role be in a sustainable future.

We are already experiencing a generational shift in attitudes, the millennial workforce is seeking out more purposeful work. If employers want to hook the big talent they need to acknowledge the values that are important to the upcoming workforce and align themselves accordingly. They need to prove that they care about more than the bottom line.

John Mackey , Co-CEO of Wholefoods, expounds the virtues of finding your businesses higher purpose. He suggests that business can have a positive impact on the world at large. In his book ‘Conscious Capitalism’ he describes a win/win/win approach, where being profitable doesn’t have to come at the stakeholders’ expense. Investors, suppliers, team members, customers and the environment can all win. In a conscious business, social responsibility is an integral part of the business structure, not an add-on. He feels that business has the power to drive humanity upwards.

Good business requires good leadership and strong foundations are imperative. New companies should set up as though they plan to continue and to treat the environment accordingly. Treating the planet, and each other as though we plan to stay, is a core value of sustainability.

Sustainable practices are endeavors that work to neutralise our negative impact on the planet or help us work towards a cleaner, more efficient future.

Commitments to sustainability help us navigate the problems of our changing social and economic environment. The benefits are manifold. Reducing risks, costs, and waste. Lowering your carbon footprint. While building trust with stakeholders and increasing brand value. Becoming a company that people respect and want to work for. All this and the global benefits of a stable climate, fresh air, and a healthy environment.

The positive take away here is that tide is already beginning to turn, sustainability is set to become the norm. The real question is how quickly businesses choose to get on board. The growing market and the opportunities it presents are wide open to us as soon as we acknowledge that we can not continue as we always have.

Kindly written for us by Claire Tobin @greenheartgreenearth

Update on the Print Media Apprenticeship

IPF President


Following a Meeting between Solas and the Irish Printing Federation (IPF) at which the IPF sought clarification on the exact position of the Statutory Print Media Apprenticeship, Solas confirmed that the scheme was suspended and they would not be taking registrations.

However after discussions with Solas they confirmed that the scheme could be revived if the Printing Industry supported the scheme and guaranteed the placement of apprentices going forward.

We outlined that there was keen interest from a number of Companies. Solas are requiring solid forecasts on future numbers for registration for the scheme over the next 3 to 4 years.

It is imperative that ALL companies within the printing industry support the Print Media Apprenticeship, to create a scheme that is fit for purpose and will cover future requirements,  There is no other way to secure the future of our industry and the future of the scheme.

By not training or offering certified training to potential employees we are inviting a lack of skills, wage inflation and difficulty securing contracts going forward, as with a number of tenders nowadays we need to show competency through certification to prove our ability to deliver on a contract.

If you can help support the IPF in retaining the Print Media Apprenticeship scheme please contact us

Eugene Healy