First Düsseldorf Messe expo opens today

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The first show since the onset of Covid at Düsseldorf’s Messe centre – the home of drupa – opens today, with caravanning expo Caravan Salon taking place over the next ten days.

Transformation: drupa 2020, set for June, will show how the printing industry is transforming itself to meet the demands and opportunities of the new era.
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Caravan Salon is the first of seven major exhibitions that will take place at the Messe centre between now and December, running under new hygiene regulations.

In recognition of the importance of the event for the exhibition industry, arch-rival Cologne Messe published a full page advert in the local paper congratulating the Düsseldorf Messe on the event, which to put it in context is something akin to Queensland posting a good luck message to NSW before State of Origin.

The Düsseldorf Messe Centre has been closed since March, forcing the postponement of global mega print show drupa, as well as major packaging show interpack, and all other events, as Covid swept through Europe.

Both drupa and interpack have been moved to next year, drupa in a shortened nine-day version to run 20-28 April, with the eight-day interpack scheduled for 25 February to 4 March.

The German government has just extended its ban on many large gatherings, such as sports and concerts, until the end of the year, but exhibitions are not included, as they are able to manage crowds and hygiene.

Some 2000 Australian and New Zealand printers passed through the turnstiles of drupa last time out, joining 250,000 printers from around the world.

All print shows that were due to take place this year have been postponed, some such as Fespa postponed twice. The first six months of next year will have a crowded expo schedule.

There has been a rush to take expos and conferences online, with varying degrees of success. The local Visual Connections virtual trade show has been a stand out performer, the first in the world to get up and running, now topping 11,000 visitors, and on track to reach 12,000 by the time it draws to a close at the end of this month.

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