‘Need end-to-end solutions for flex management’
By Bhawana Anand - February 13, 2018
Santhosh P G, CEO of People Design & Communications, Bhagwath Prasad, MD of Printech Digital Imaging, Naresh Kumar Dasari, MD of Macro Media Digital Imaging, and Rajib Das of Spectacular MMT, discussed the key challenges that confront the industry and the probable solutions for making digital printing truly ‘green’
In a session on ‘Why it makes OOH business sense to go green’ organised during the course of the Karnataka Talks OOH conference in Bengaluru, Santhosh P G, CEO of People Design & Communications, Bhagwath Prasad, MD of Printech Digital Imaging, Naresh Kumar Dasari, MD of Macro Media Digital Imaging, and Rajib Das of Spectacular MMT, discussed the key challenges that confront the industry and the probable solutions toward making digital printing truly ‘green’.
Santhosh in his opening remarks as the moderator of the session stated that OOH media is gaining significant ground vis-à-vis competing media like radio and mobile, given that an increasing number of people are on the go in the outdoor. Hence, the OOH media is more likely to draw the attention of people with regard to environment related issues.
Naresh pointed out that while there are issues with regard to the disposal of PVC material, which is not bio-degradable, no alternative materials that are viable for OOH advertising have come into the market.
Prasad was of the view that PVC flex used for advertising makes up only a fraction of the different PVC based materials that are disposed of after use, but the OOH media being highly visible is drawing the maximum attention of all when it comes to environment related matters.
Rajib asserted that there are hardly any instances of used flex prints lying on the roads or choking the drains. Instead, those are being recycled for use as tempo covers, shelters for the shelterless, etc. They are also used as the base for flexes of new campaigns to be mounted on billboards.
Prasad said that a robust mechanism for flex collection needs to be instituted. At the same time, the industry should look at non-PVC substrates, as has been done in certain segments of markets like Canada and Europe.
Rajib added that the environmental issue is more to do with the use of hazardous solvent inks, rather than the flex. On the pricing part, he said that advertising clients should be prepared to spend a little more to support green printing, especially when they are meeting rising costs of advertising in places like airports, etc.
The panel agreed that IT brands like Wipro and Infosys are now asking for green printing solutions. Many more brands will likewise seek green solutions in the near term.
According to Prasad, the onus of pushing for green printing should be on the specialist agencies. They could convince the brand managers to meet the higher cost of green printing. That will also encourage the digital printing firms to invest more in green printing machines.