Germany redrafts printing inks law

July 25, 2016

The country’s draft law discusses a “positive list” of substances allowed for use in printer ink manufacturing.ink2

Chemical Watch reported on the draft, which has been sent to the European Commission (EC), and which is an amendment to Germany’s Consumer Goods Regulation. It “establishes a positive list of substances allowed for use in the manufacture of printing inks”, with particular focus on those used for food contact materials (FCMs) and their specific migration limits (SMLs).

The site pointed out that to be “included in the list, substances must have undergone a health assessment, or have been proven not to migrate to foodstuffs from the printing inks”. So-called carcinogenic, mutagenic and reprotoxic (CMR) substances have been banned “unless a safety assessment ‘justifies their use or the derivation of limit values for transfer into foodstuffs’”, while nanomaterials are allowed with “explicit provision”.

So far, there are 535 approved substances, but according to the European Printing Inks Association (EuPIA), the actual number of substances used in printing inks is around 6,000, with the German Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture acknowledging that the positive list “is incomplete”, and will be “updated continuously until the ordinance enters into force”. The law change was expected “as early as 2014”, but “progress was slow” because it failed to “gain political traction”.

While it was being processed, the European packaging industry “expressed some hopes that it could become the basis of EU legislation on printing inks”, with trade bodies, non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and European parliament members all “repeatedly demand[ing] harmonised rules for inks and other FCMs”. The EC in turn has “come under pressure” from the parliament’s Environment Committee (Envi) to “prioritise the drawing-up of specific EU measures”.

In response to the change, the EuPIA commented that the EC “could soon announce its intention to issue community legislation, which would postpone or even stop the entry into force of the German ordinance”, with Executive Manager Martin Kanert stating that the German government “should back EU-wide rules rather than pursue a national approach”, as Envi listed “good reasons why it makes sense to have EU-wide legislation”.

The organisation believes, and had “previously warned” the law would “discriminate against German ink and FCM manufacturers”, and “initiate a patchwork of national regulations, rather than harmonise rules across Europe”. Chemical Watch noted that the “key question is whether the ordinance will be mutually recognised across the member states”, and had heard the EuPIA and the German Federation for Food Law and Food Science (BLL) asked the government for clarification”.

Kanert added that “if the German government does not mutually recognise the law in other member states, it will affect companies across Europe. If they do, German companies will be at a disadvantage”. The EuPIA is also working with other European printing ink and FCM trade associations on a “joint statement […] voicing their concerns about the German law […] it is absolutely premature to request compliance with the requirements” at “this early stage”.

Before Germany adopts the ordinance “this year”, the EC – alongside member states, the World Trade Organisation (WTO) and German federal states – will be “asked to comment on the draft”, with a “transitional period of two years after entry into force”.

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OCP achieves new ISO standard

July 25, 2016

ocp - inks made in germanyThe ink manufacturer has become “one of the first companies” to sign up to the ISO 9001:2015 quality management system standard.

In a press release, the company noted that the DIN EN ISO 9001:2015 standard “signifies OCP now operates according to the latest industry standards”, and that the “implementation of these new requirements will be compulsory as of 2018”. OCP also pointed out that this “again demonstrates its commitment to innovation and adherence to the highest of measures by adopting these changes immediately”.

The ink manufacturer has also already “been certified for over 10 years in following the TUV quality management system”, and stated that its goal “has been and remains always to provide the highest levels of quality control in production and in customer service. With this rapid transition to the latest standards, we can clearly document our continuing commitment to our objectives”.

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Canon USA launches new inkjets

July 20, 2016

The range of MAXIFY models released are aimed at the SoHo market, and are said to provide “cost-effective printing solutions”.canonmaxifyseries

The OEM revealed the new machines, consisting of four inkjet AIOs and one small office printer, with the four AIOs including the MB5420, 5120, 2720 and 2120, while the printer is the iB4120. The machines are all said by Canon to be “ideal for small and home office business owners” in the legal, accounting, construction, real estate, healthcare, retail and food industries, with “100 percent US-based service and support available”.

The wireless-enabled devices include features such as “increased print speeds”, management information base (MIB) support, cloud printing capabilities, “high ink yields and paper capacities”, and “improved fast first print-out speeds” of six seconds for monochrome and seven seconds for colour. Its belief is that the series “provides business owners with an essential and affordable tool that serves as a smart investment month-to-month”.

The previously-mentioned MIB support allows the OEM to “help reduce the operational burden on administrators in an environment where inkjet and laser printers are present”, allowing for printing of labels, envelopes, company letterheads and more. Each device also utilises a dual resistant high density (DRHD) individual ink tank system, said to provide “sharp and vivid colours with crisp text”. Each printer can also “automatically schedule on and off times […] to help conserve energy”.

Canon’s MAXIFY Printing Solutions app allows for direct access to the cloud from mobile devices, while the MAXIFY Cloud Link connects to social media and platforms such as Google Drive, Dropbox, Facebook and Twitter, and each machine features compatibility with Google Cloud Print. In a later release, the OEM noted that the new machines would have AirPrint support as well, meaning that the printers can also support Apple’s wireless cloud printing service.

This also extended to previously-released machines including: the PIXMA MG7720; MG6820; MG6821; MG6822; MG5720; MG5721; MG5722; and iP8720. Of the five new releases, the MB2720 and 2120 feature yields of 1,200 pages in monochrome and 900 pages in colour, a 20,000 page monthly duty cycle and respective paper capacities of 500 and 250 sheets.

The MB420 and 5120 in turn feature yields of 2,500 pages in monochrome and 1,500 pages in colour, a 30,000 page duty cycle and respective paper capacities of 500 and 250 pages. Finally, the iB4120 has yields of 2,500 pages in monochrome and 1,500 pages in colour, a 30,000 page duty cycle, and a 500-sheet paper capacity. The devices are available now, with the MB2720 costing $199.99 (€181.67), the MB2120 $179.99 (€163.50), the MB5420 $399.99 (€363.35), the MB5120 $299.99 (€272.51), and the iB4120 $149.99 (€136.25).

Yuichi Ishizuka, President and COO of Canon USA, commented: “Since the launch of the MAXIFY brand of printers, Canon has been unwaveringly committed to supporting small and home office business professionals with products and services they need to improve the workflow for their business. The new generation of MAXIFY printers further solidifies this commitment with the incorporation of feature sets that are specifically designed to help the business owner nurture and grow their business.”

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Printer choices evaluated

July 19, 2016

An article on IT Pro advised businesses on which type of colour printer was right “for your business”.printer office

The article noted that “most businesses simply can’t function without a printer”, and even though the paperless office “has been promised for decades, there’s a good chance your processes still involve producing invoices, weekly and quarterly reports, documents for signing and proofing, advertising, sales pitches and more”.

With new technology, there’s never been “such an impressive range of printers from which to choose”, and “there’s one to suit every need”, with colour printers “almost as affordable as mono printers”. The article then gives the choice of laser, LED or inkjet, with lasers “a natural choice for high-volume printing”, as they’re “fast […] and tend to be very reliable”, with colour quality “that’s good enough for professional reports […] even at the cheaper end of the market”.

On LED, the writer points out that they “work in a similar way to lasers, but use few moving parts, making them slightly cheaper to manufacture”, and “speed and colour quality don’t suffer at all: some higher-end LED printers are capable of producing stunning results”. The only “significant difference” noticed was that cheaper LEDs “have a tendency to leave a noticeable cross-hatching pattern on large areas of single colour”.

With inkjet, the article warned not to “rule out” the printer type, noting that they “used to be second-best for business” because of “slow print speeds and high running costs”, but now “new technologies are closing the gap”, such as HP Inc’s PageWide. This was described as “a game changer” with “laser-beating print speeds”, though one “trade-off” is that they work “best with more expensive paper”, and cheaper devices ”work happily with any grade of paper”.

On cost, the article notes printers “can vary considerably […] but remember that ongoing printing costs can dwarf the initial outlay in time”, and OEMs “claw back any savings by hiking the price of consumables”, which unfortunately can “increase running costs hugely” in high-volume environments. The piece also discusses how business inkjets “can be price-competitive” compared to laser and LED, while there are “practical ways of keeping costs under control too”.

These include “restricting the use of colour so that staff aren’t tempted to print personal documents or holiday snaps”, and some machines can “block individual users from using colours, or limit the number of colour pages they can produce”. Memory considerations were also highlighted, with some printers not having enough to print high-quality images, though others feature internal hard disks, external memory slots or confidential security settings.

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Epson ink tanks succeed in Kenya

July 15, 2016

Kenya is named as the leading country in sales of ink tank printers in Africa.

epson ink tanks

AllAfrica reported that Epson had reached their target of 15 million sales, as previously reported by The Recycler, with Mukesh Bector, Regional Sales Manager for Epson East Africa, noting that “since setting up in this market in 2011, Epson’s strategy has always been focused on real business concerns such as the day-to-day costs of running a printer, as opposed to price”.

He added that “in a span of three years, ITS printers have become the most popular printers for small businesses, and have consistently guaranteed the lowest cost of printing in the market without compromising on quality. The results are evident in our growth”. Bector also said that “Kenya has been a huge success for us, to date, Kenya is the leading country in the uptake of ITS printers in Africa, with local sales last year standing at over 10,000 units”.

The ink tank printers “have been especially successful with SMEs in market due to additional capabilities such as Wi-Fi direct, printing from non-traditional products such as mobile phones as well as cloud printing capabilities to ensure businesses run as smoothly as possible. With a constantly evolving business landscape, Epson is committed to investing and expanding its presence in the market and providing product solutions relevant to its consumers”.


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ZUtA presents mobile robotic printer

July 14, 2016

robot printerZUtA Labs have made a robotic printer that fits in the palm of your hand.

The crowd-funded wireless printer is only four inches in size and “makes it easy to produce images on the go” reported Images can be printed directly from a phone or laptop, and using an app, the printer can print what you see on your phone. Itrolls backwards and forwards on paper, taking about a minute to print the image.

The robot has a rechargeable battery that lasts about an hour, and it can print 100 pages from one ink cartridge; at present this is only monochrome, although ZutA hope to add colour at some stage. The printer was designed in Jerusalem at ZutA’s research lab, and CEO and founder Tuvia Elbaum said that “people want to be able to print wherever they are, even if they are in the office they are still working from their laptop or their smartphone”.

Elbaum was asked if he was worried about the “green” aspect of the printer, and while he acknowledged this he said that he felt there was still a need for photos, tickets and labels. There has been interest in the remote-controlled printer from people who are interested in creating games and those who want to do art tutorials. The printer will be available in December and will cost $299 (€225), while Kickstarter backers will get the ZUtA printer for $199 (€150).







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Inkjet cartridges stolen in UK

July 14, 2016

A lorry was robbed while parked in a truck stop in Bedfordshire, England.bedford

Bedfordshire News reported that the truck was parked on the Bedford road in Husborne Crawley on the night of 11 July when the thieves struck. The crime took place between 9pm and 6.30am, said the police, who are looking for the criminals involved.

The driver had made a truck stop and was “believed to have been in the vehicle” when the crime took place. Police have advised lorry drivers to make sure their vehicles are secure, and more so if stopping for the night.




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Canon releases two new printers

July 13, 2016

The OEM has introduced the PIXMA MG3050 and the MG2550S inkjet new printer

Amateur Photographer reported that the printers use a “hybrid ink system” which makes the colours stand out and both are WiFi-enabled, so that photos can be printed from a smartphone or computer using the Canon Print app. Both models are slim and compact and take up little space but print “high quality documents and photos” and are designed for the home user.

The FINE (full-photolithography inkjet nozzle engineering) cartridge ink enables “grain-free, smooth prints”, and the XL cartridges print more pages. Cloud printing enables the freedom of starting printing when not at home, and social media can be used to start the printing and documents can be scanned direct to the phone for those who are mobile workers.

Designed for creativity, both printers include My Image Garden for Mac or PC for organising photos, and there is access to Creative Park Premium which is an “online service for Canon genuine ink users” and contains “designs and projects from professional artists and photographers”. Both series print 8ipm in mono and 4ipm in colour, and the MG3050 has an option for XL cartridges for lower print costs, while the PIXMA MG2550S has a quiet mode for reduced noise when operating.

Both printers are available from September, and the PIXMA MG3050 is priced at £69.99 ($92.60/€83.82) while the PIXMA MG2550S is priced at £44.99 ($59.52/€53.88).




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GSC Imaging launches new wide-format inks

July 7, 2016

The company also discussed its new website, which offers the ability for customers to find specific products through an “ink finder” function.

Epson's SureColor T3000, T5000 and T7000

Epson’s SureColor T3000, T5000 and T7000

The company states that it is a “developer and toll manufacturer of high performance digital inkjet inks”, and focuses on the “development, manufacturing and sales of various water-based inkjet inks used for desktop and wide-format printer cartridges”. The new releases for its aqueous wide-format range of inks include compatible inks for the Epson UltraChrome XD SureColor printers, including the T3000, T3270, T5000, T5270, T7000 and T7270.

Codes for the five colour pigment ink set include matte black (W170), photo black (W171), cyan (W172), magenta (W173) and yellow (W174), while a new desktop ink for the Epson EcoTank printers was also made available. The compatible ink can be used in the L100, L110, L120, L200, L210, L300, L355, L550 and L800 ultra-high capacity machines, with products codes for the five-colour set including black (I540), cyan (I541), magenta (I542), yellow (I543), light cyan (I544) and light magenta (I545).

The Recycler reported on the company’s new website being launched in May, and GSC Imaging added that the “ink finder” function “enables visitors to search for specific inks by entering printer model, ink cartridge number, OEM brand name, or GSC imaging ink product codes”. If visitors are unable to find a product, they can “use our contact page and give us a brief description of what it is you are looking for”, and the company is “happy to assist you with product formulation […] if you require custom ink development”.

The company also pointed out that it works “with printer manufacturers to develop an ink that fits their needs, including toll manufacturing according to your formulation”.

For more information, visit

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Epson ink tanks reach 15 million sales

July 6, 2016

Tepsoninktankgraphhe OEM revealed that since being launched in 2010, the machines have reached the global sales milestone.

In a press release, the OEM revealed the sales figures, stating that the figures prove “the success of this revolutionary new system”, having been first launched in October 2010 in the Indonesian market. After their introduction, the devices have been released in 150 other nations and regions, which Epson pointed out “highlight[s] the positive response”. The machines have “made a significant impression on the market”, the OEM claimed, particularly in emerging markets.

In these areas, the machines’ sales have “accounted for approximately” 10 percent of total sales of inkjet and laser printers, equating to around 45 million units, and Epson predicts “strong continued sales growth with global annual sales projected to account for nearly 40 percent of the total sales of Epson inkjet printers”, compared to 30 percent and 35 percent in previous years. It had revealed earlier this year that in India alone it had sold over one million ink tank devices.

The OEM mentioned that it “believes the success of the high-capacity ink tank printers is due to a number of factors”, including that the tanks are “purpose-built and fully integrated, which means that they provide a mess-free and reliable solution” as well as being convenient because the user “can fill [the tanks] and print thousands of pages without interruption” or replacing cartridges. Cost-effectiveness was also named, and the “ultra-low-cost per print”.

Koichi Kubota, Director, Managing Executive Officer and COO of Epson’s Printer Operations Division stated: “With 15 million units sold, we’re proud to say that this new concept has proven a success. At Epson, we’ve always valued the importance of offering customers a wide range of choice so that they can find a product that suits their individual needs. We identified a unique market opportunity; customers looking for a purpose-built, reliable, cost-effective and high-volume printing solution. Our innovative high-capacity ink tank printers provide the answer, and the figures testify to that.”

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