Everyone who’s anyone in the field of plastics processing came together at the once again fully booked out Fakuma international trade fair for plastics processing on Lake Constance where Germany, Austria and Switzerland meet for the 26th the time from the 16th through the 20th of October. The international exhibitors, as well as private trade fair promoters P. E. Schall GmbH & Co KG, were pleased once more this year with the great demand for this pioneering event in the field of plastics technology: 1933 market and technology leaders from 40 countries presented their companies to 47,650 expert visitors from all over the world!
Global Plastics Industry Does More than Just Adapt to Market Requirements
The proactive technology transformation appears to be succeeding in the field of plastics processing: New materials, more efficient manufacturing processes, 3D and 4D printing alternatives, digitalised and automated production solutions, reduced energy consumption for machines and systems – these are just a few of the regulating screws that need to be tweaked by today’s plastics processors. The issue of sustainability, including aspects such a plastics recycling, material savings and biomaterials, was the subject of more discussion than ever before at this year’s Fakuma, because the demands of plastics users such as the automotive industry and the consumer goods and packaging manufacturers are becoming more and more complex. Fakuma 2018 very impressively verified the fact that the plastics industry is up to the challenge, and that it has the most up-to-date tools at its disposal in every regard, in order to work economically with efficient use of materials and resources.
The production of affordable, and at the same time rugged lightweight design structures was presented at the event to just as great an extent as a broad-based portfolio of new materials. New machines, adapted tooling, integrated quality assurance, controllable hydraulic and to an ever greater extent electric drives, and last but not least networkable and thus communicative controllers complete with software – the plastics industry is becoming more and more digital, which is not least of all made apparent by great demand for Industry 4.0-capable equipment and systems.
Fakuma as Popular as Ever
The compact Friedrichshafen Exhibition Centre on Lake Constance was once again fully booked out. Manufacturers and distributors from outside of Germany now account for more than 42% of the total number. Internationalism has been growing for years. Not least of all the publicity surrounding 3D/4D printing technology and additive manufacturing is causing more and more new and established suppliers from all over the world to appear on the scene, who supplement the portfolio with highly interesting solutions at Fakuma as a globally leading trade fair for plastics processing.
With 47,650 expert visitors from 126 countries, Fakuma plays an important role amongst the experts. The exhibitors all agree: The visitors demonstrate high levels of expertise and the technical discussions are of “high-quality”. Consequently, the exhibiting companies were more than satisfied and their comments were entirely positive. Clear-cut positioning as a trade fair for plastics processing – and not as a multi-technology event for plastics issues – makes an essential contribution to Fakuma’s excellent reputation as a technical industry meet. It’s strictly practice-oriented alignment to the process sequence for plastics processing is a further important success factor for the industry event.
Knowledge and Technology Transfer in Theory and in Practice
Economic growth of the plastics processing industry is only being impeded by the lack of qualified personnel. As a result, expert meeting places like Fakuma are being used to an ever greater extent for recruiting purposes. The objectively oriented supplementary program is an ideal opportunity for technical further training, and at the same time for meeting interesting people. This year’s series of events with 69 technical presentations was the ideal setting for expert visitors and exhibiting companies to gather comprehensive information about a great variety of issues.