• By the burnished balls of Brussels

    By the burnished balls of Brussels

    John Penhallow || November 20, 2015
    It is no exaggeration to say that the eyes of the label world were riveted on Brussels during the recent Labelexpo Europe show. The The Atomium, built for the World Exhibition of 1958, and recently refurbished, welcomed visitors to Labelexpo Euro…

  • Seeking refuge

    John Penhallow || October 13, 2015
    Readers of this column may remember that KBA, probably still Europe’s second biggest printing press manufacturer, has just entered the narrow web business. Through its subsidiary KBA Meprint, the company launched a new machine at Labelexpo 2015…

  • Beyond pressure sensitive

    Beyond pressure sensitive

    John Penhallow || September 7, 2015
    Time was, men were men and labels were labels. You knew where you were then. If you were a pressure sensitive label converter, you made PS labels. Period. And if you were a label press manufacturer, you made special presses that were quite different…

  • French leave

    French leave

    John Penhallow || July 21, 2015
    In case any readers of L&NW are planning to holiday in France this summer, they should note that the rentrée this year falls on September 1. In case any readers don’t know what the rentrée is, well, it’s the most importa…

  • Balkan business booms

    Balkan business booms

    John Penhallow || June 3, 2015
    Srbija is not the easiest word to pronounce, and even in its more usual spelling of Serbia, it is a country which Narrow Web Europe News has until now overlooked. Not any longer. With its capital, Belgrade, and its population of just over seven milli…

  • More beer labels now say ‘Skål’

    April 16, 2015
    It has been unkindly remarked that every edition of Narrow Web Europe reports on some aspect of beer, wine or spirits labels. This has nothing to do with your correspondent’s drinking habits but simply reflects the importance of this sector of…

  • Currency swings and roundabouts

    John Penhallow || March 9, 2015
    Violent exchange rate fluctuations have been rare in recent years. This year looks like the exception. In late January, and to general surprise, the Swiss Central Bank stopped intervening to hold down the value of the Swiss franc. Within minutes, the…

  • The happy pessimists

    John Penhallow || January 26, 2015
    Writing this in France at the start of 2015, your correspondent wonders why the French came bottom in a poll of forty countries for “confidence in the future,” while the same poll shows that over 80% of French people say they are “h…

  • Playing the game

    John Penhallow || November 17, 2014
    Few people, even in France, know that the second biggest “instant game” lottery in the world is French. The Française des Jeux (FDJ) is a government-controlled quasi-monopoly which also runs betting and a host of other gaming-relat…

  • Thank you, Brussels!

    Thank you, Brussels!

    John Penhallow || October 10, 2014
    Many people in Europe do not love the European Union, and still less do they love its administrative wing, the European Commission. But for once the Eurocrats of Brussels have enacted some legislation which seems to meet with general approval and whi…

  • The end of the United Kingdom?

    The end of the United Kingdom?

    John Penhallow || September 9, 2014
    North American readers surely have more important things to worry about than Scotland’s referendum, but just to remind you that on Thursday, September 18 of this year, when Scots go to the polls to vote on independence – a “yes&rdqu…

  • Expressing shelf appeal

    John Penhallow || July 21, 2014
    One of the lesser revelations at the FINAT Congress in Monaco in June was the difficulty, for the association’s secretariat, of translating this year’s theme – “the battle for shelf appeal” into French. The nation that h…

  • Could this be the next revolution?

    Could this be the next revolution?

    June 2, 2014
    For more than ten years people in the PS label industry have been arguing and discussing the digital revolution, and the effects have indeed been revolutionary. But those of us who take a long-term view of technology, politics or indeed life in gener…

  • Getting certified

    Getting certified

    John Penhallow || April 15, 2014
    Some things change: in the recent weeks of unseasonably mild, sunny weather, many citizens of Western Europe have changed over to thinking that maybe global warming isn’t such a bad thing after all. However this early spring has come right on t…

  • No recession in pharmaceutical labels and packaging

    No recession in pharmaceutical labels and packaging

    John Penhallow || March 13, 2014
    It is an established fact that the French are Europe’s leading pill-pushers. However, that is surely not the only reason for the success of the Pharmapack show, held in late February in Paris. The themes of the show can be counted on one hand:…