background

About the World Label Awards

Background It was in 1991 that the World Label Awards was formed as an informal way for the Europeans (FINAT) and the Americans (TLMI) to "challenge" each other to an annual contest to discover which association could produce the higher quality labels. The prime movers were Ron Spring (FINAT) who had been running the FINAT awards for some 10 years and Dick Schwartz (TLMI) who had seen how well the FINAT awards were being received in Australia and persuaded TLMI to become involved. One year later JFLP (the Japanese label association) was invited to join so the organisation became truly global.

There have been three Chairmen of the WLA. The original Chairman was Ron Spring followed by Dale Bunnell and now Tony White who has held the position for 8 years. The judging was originally carried out at alternate venues in Europe, America and Asia. This has now evolved into the judges meeting just before Labelexpo USA (Chicago) or Labelexpo Europe (Brussels). Each of the associations supplying one judge each (originally two).

In 2019 the L9 World Label Awards competition has been in existence for 28 years and continues to attract high quality entries from members around the world. The 9 participating associations are: TLMI (USA), JFLP (Japan), FINAT (Europe), FPLMA (Australia), SALMA (New Zealand), LMAI (India), PEIAC (China), ABIEA (Brazil) and AMETIQ (Mexico). Entries for the L9 WLA competition must have won an award or be endorsed by one of the local L9 associations mentioned above before being submitted by the participating association. Individual printers/converters cannot enter directly.


Since 2003 the Australian label association (FPLMA) has been participating along with SALMA (the New Zealand association). The Indian Association has joined as a full member as has PEIAC for China.

For many years the Awards competition focussed on the main printing and converting processes. Since 2002 end use classes have been added which include wine labels, cosmetics, innovation and coupons etc. It is expected that the competition like the World label Association will change to meet the different challenges of the future label markets.

Over the past few years the World Label Awards has gained international recognition for the high quality of its award winners. In order to further promote the WLA this book will be circulated to an even wider audience than previously thought possible. Winning an award is used by many converters as a marketing tool to promote their services to a quality conscious end user market.