Fespa outlines Covid-safe practices for the visitors

The measures aim to minimize the risk of spreading the virus

Fespa outlines Covid-safe practices for the visitors
Fespa will be operating several Covid-safe practices to safeguard visitors, exhibitors, staff, and contractors at the RAI, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.

Fespa Global Print Expo and European Sign Expo (12 – 15 October 2021) returns to the RAI, Amsterdam, The Netherlands. To safeguard visitors, exhibitors, staff, and contractors, Fespa will operate several Covid-safe practices.

Entry requirements and navigating the exhibition halls

This year, visitors will be required to register before attending the event to obtain their digital entry QR code, which will be held on participants’ phones. The entry requirements for the venue specify that all attendees must provide proof that they are double vaccinated, have recently recovered from Covid-19, or received a negative Covid test before entering. 

This will be facilitated via the EU Digital Covid Certificate (DCC) for European travelers, and printed proof of vaccination from non-European countries will also be accepted. These measures aim to minimize the risk of spreading the virus in the exhibition. In addition to proof of vaccination or negative test result, all visitors will be asked a series of health questions before entering.

Participants who cannot provide proof of vaccination can still visit Fespa under the ‘impact to Dutch economy’ exemption. To do this, visitors will need to fill the Quarantine Declaration Form and tick the box that indicates that they fall into the exemption category. 

Visitors require an invitation letter from the RAI to accompany the Quarantine Declaration Form, which Fespa will issue upon request. Attendees who are not fully vaccinated will also need to provide a negative test result each day (test results are only valid for 24 hours). Free-of-charge rapid antigen testing will be available onsite at the RAI.

Following recent guidance from the Dutch government, social distancing and wearing facemasks are no longer mandatory. Still, Fespa recommends that each attendee takes the safety precautions that help them feel safe.

To support this, a ‘traffic light system,’ where visitors can wear a red, orange, or green badge, will enable everyone to indicate their personal preferences around physical contact. The floorplan features wider aisles and floor markings will be in a place where queues may form, which will allow for the easier flow of visitors around the event.

When arriving or leaving the RAI, crowd management and traffic protocols will be used to ensure attendees arrive and leave the show as safely as possible.

Cleaning and hygiene measures at Fespa 

Strict cleaning and hygiene measures in place, include – 

  • Staff will follow a rigorous master cleaning plan, supported by a Covid-19 hygiene plan, covering everything from special vacuum-cleaner filters to extra antiseptic surface wiping and increased toilet cleaning.
  • A newly reconfigured and recalibrated air ventilation system, based on guidance issued by the Dutch National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM).
  • Advanced waste disposal procedures
  • The use of sustainable disposable single-use cups and cutlery in all catering facilities
  • Access to hand sanitizer, soap, napkins, antiseptic wipes, and other cleaning materials, including contactless sanitizer stations at key locations and signposted throughout the venue.
  • A medical isolation room staffed by personnel trained in Covid-19 prevention, detection, and emergency response.

Contactless experience

To further minimize physical touchpoints throughout the exhibition, visitors can use QR codes to access online brochures, magazines, and product information and connect with suppliers. This will be facilitated by Fespa’s event partner, visit Connect. Once registered, attendees will receive links to an online portal and QR code for entry.

Neil Felton, chief executive officer, Fespa comments, “Health and safety is paramount at Fespa Global Print Expo and European Sign Expo 2021, and we have been working closely with the RAI, Dutch Government, the National Institute of Public Health and the Environment and the city’s Municipal Health Service to ensure that we’re following the latest guidance to safeguard all participants. There will, of course, be differences in the way the 2021 events run. Still, we believe that printers that are keen to experience a live Fespa event again can do so with a high level of confidence in the measures being taken by Fespa and the RAI to protect them.”


2023 promises an interesting ride for print in India

Indian Printer and Publisher founded in 1979 is the oldest B2B trade publication in the multi-platform and multi-channel IPPGroup. While the print and packaging industries have been resilient in the past 33 months since the pandemic lockdown of 25 March 2020, the commercial printing and newspaper industries have yet to recover their pre-Covid trajectory.

The fragmented commercial printing industry faces substantial challenges as does the newspaper industry. While digital short-run printing and the signage industry seem to be recovering a bit faster, ultimately their growth will also be moderated by the progress of the overall economy. On the other hand book printing exports are doing well but they too face several supply-chain and logistics challenges.

The price of publication papers including newsprint has been high in the past year while availability is diminished by several mills shutting down their publication paper and newsprint machines in the past four years. Indian paper mills are also exporting many types of paper and have raised prices for Indian printers. To some extent, this has helped in the recovery of the digital printing industry with its on-demand short-run and low-wastage paradigm.

Ultimately digital print and other digital channels will help print grow in a country where we are still far behind in our paper and print consumption and where digital is a leapfrog technology that will only increase the demand for print in the foreseeable future. For instance, there is no alternative to a rise in textbook consumption but this segment will only reach normality in the next financial year beginning on 1 April 2023.

Thus while the new normal is a moving target and many commercial printers look to diversification, we believe that our target audiences may shift and change. Like them, we will also have to adapt with agility to keep up with their business and technical information needs.

Our 2023 media kit is ready, and it is the right time to take stock and reconnect with your potential markets and customers. Print is the glue for the growth of liberal education, new industry, and an emerging economy. We seek your participation in what promises to be an interesting ride.

– Naresh Khanna

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