If you’re reading this, The Canmaker magazine’s May issue, at Cannex & Fillex in Denver, Colorado, then welcome to the year’s biggest exhibition of canmaking technology at a time of dramatic change.

We’ve pulled out the stops to bring this issue to Denver because it covers a number of key developments that will be key to the industry’s expansion at the forefront of manufacturing excellence.

In last month’s preview issue for the show, which is also being distributed, we covered the latest products and services being offered by suppliers to canmakers.

It’s a fact that canmaking is on the cusp of significant changes. The processes used in making cans are becoming smarter, with data gathering and communications enabling metal packaging specialists to respond more quickly to brand owners’ needs.

Processes are becoming greener as well, with, as is reported in this issue, canstock producers – mostly in China where environmental pressures are growing – offering polyester-laminated steel and aluminium. These materials enable the manufacture of cans with hardly any volatile organic compound emissions and with less energy.

Even systems such as UV-curing of inks, which have been replacing thermally cured printing around the world for many years, are changing for the better with LED-based versions offering lower energy consumption. This again is featured with an article from a company in China.

The question, as I’ve said before, is when will the beverage can manufacturers in Europe and the Americas start seriously considering the use of these environmentally-beneficial systems, as have been well established in Japan for many years. They may be doing so already, but cans and canmaking will have a better image as a result of implementation of these systems.

In the meantime, Cannex offers a great snapshot of a vibrant industry in many ways. If you missed the show, read on and get a taste of what it’s all about.

John Nutting