The new ISO12647 scheme expands on the BPIF’s ISO12647-2 certificate to allow not only offset litho printers, but also flexo, wide-format and digital businesses to achieve an award claimed to be the first of its kind, in that it meets the requirements of the United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS).

“The ISO12647-2 was developed for sheetfed and heatset web-offset companies but we’ve found that the increasing demand for independent certification that is UKAS accredited has been from digital and packaging companies using other printing methods such as flexo and gravure,” said BPIF head of business Philip Thompson.

“Now if a customer comes to you and asks for an ‘ISO12647 job’, version 2 of the BPIF ISO12647 Colour Quality Management scheme has been expanded to cover these printing methods.”

Preparing the scheme for more universal use has involved formulating guidelines on how printers working with more challenging substrates can still prove their eligibility, Thompson added.

“The new version recognises that often specialised substrates are used in many areas of printing. By allowing these customised printing conditions, the company is being audited against how good the printing processes are, how consistent the quality is and that they are using the ISO12647 tolerances within the certification,” he explained.

“You’re still measuring the product but this will enable most printing companies to be certified to ISO12647 if they implement the scheme requirements.”

He added: “If the substrate is difficult to print on, with significant dry back for example, that will not mean that they can’t be certified.”

The document is free for BPIF members and £50 for non members and can be obtained from