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Committee for Graphic Arts Technology Standards

NPES The Association for Suppliers of Printing, Publishing and Converting Technologies supports and administers the activities of the ANSI-accredited Committee for Graphic Arts Technologies Standards (CGATS).


CGATS was formed in 1987 following a year-long assessment of the need for an umbrella standards committee by the Image Technology Standards Board (ITSB) of the American National Standards Institute (ANSI), and received ANSI accreditation in 1989. The goal of CGATS is to have the entire scope of technical work for printing, publishing and converting technologies represented in one national standardization and coordination effort, while respecting the established activities of existing accredited standards committees and industry standards developers.
CGATS writes standards only where the need exists and no other committee is undertaking the writing.

CGATS provides a vehicle for other industry organizations that have specifications to work under the CGATS "umbrella" to move their work into the standards arena, and have the work developed and approved as an American National Standard. The result of these joint efforts is the development of an ANSI CGATS standard.

The committee works to improve the efficiency of national standards development, facilitates information exchange, coordinates multi-discipline standards activities and provides liaison for international standards development.


CGATS has standards, either approved or in draft, relating to:

  • pallet loading of printed materials
  • metrology
  • terminology
  • plates
  • process control
  • electronic transmission of publication ads
  • digital data exchange
  • color data definition
  • design workflow for packaging
  • ink and color characterization for packaging

CGATS has continued the following work, formerly developed under the IT8 Committee:

  • digital data exchange
  • color data definition

Standards development is completed within subcommittees (SC), working groups (WG), or task forces (TF). In accordance with ANSI procedures, all standards undergo a periodic review every five years to determine whether to reaffirm, revise or withdraw the standard.


Participation on CGATS committees and at meetings is open to anyone having an interest. Apply for CGATS membership.

Membership application.

Access minutes and other committee documents by following this link:

Subcommittees and their activities

For more information contact the NPES Standards Department.