The Breakdown and Value of GMI Certification

Before we kindly remind you that we are GMI Certified. We want to share the significance, details behind the process, and the value it brings to our customers. We searched and found that many printing companies proudly display their GMI certification emblem without explaining the significance. Let’s fix that and jump into the details!

What is GMI?

Graphic Measures International (GMI) is a global company that evaluates the packaging quality of printing jobs worldwide. GMI is a standardized system based on scientific, repeatable measurements that assess the performance of packaging suppliers.

GMI took ISO 12647 — a family of standards for printing processes — and applied a scoring system. Most brands choose printing features that they would like to monitor, and GMI sets the parameters for each metric. Once a print job starts or is completed, GMI tests printing samples and assigns a score to each metric.

Packaging or Print items outside of the threshold earn points, which range from 0 to 3.

  • 0 is printing perfection!
  • 1 and 2 indicate minor flaws.
  • 3 equals a significant deficiency, which brings an automatic fail for the entire print job.

The GMI Certification Process

The certification process consists of 4 primary steps.

  1. Self-Evaluation & Minimum Equipment Verification

Online self-appraisal that tells GMI whether the applicant meets its minimum equipment requirement and capability standard. Upon determination that a printing packaging supplier meets the minimum criteria, invoicing is for certification fees is made.

  1. Certification Fees & Payment

After payment is received, GMI issues a print test kit to the supplier.

  1. Print Test Kit

The print test kit evaluates the printing packaging supplier’s ability to produce a set of printing plates that meet established requirements, capacity to print per the program specifications, and talent to match the provided examples.

  1. Onsite Consultation

If applicable, the printing company will hear back from the certification team to schedule an onsite consultation and be provided with proper documentation to help with audit prep. The onsite consultation is a full day visit from the Certification Engineers that evaluate the supplier in four critical areas of manufacturing -Prepress, Plate Making, Printing Press, Post Press.

GMI Levels and Scores

Once a supplier is certified, there are continuing sample evaluations and in-store assessments. Print packaging suppliers receive a supplier score calculated based on the number of passed sample evals divided by the total number of evals completed.

Platinum and Gold

High-Performance Print Packaging Supplier – Consistent history of high performance (supplier score > 90%)

Gold and Silver

Print Packaging Supplier in Good Standing Consistent history of acceptable performance (supplier score 80-89%)


Print Packaging Supplier Performance Under Review History of below-average performance (supplier score 79% or below)

Corrective Actions needed for anything under 65%

The Value GMI brings to our customers

GMI takes the role of a neutral, third-party advocate for brand owners that want to be sure of working with the most qualified packaging suppliers. GMI provides large name brands, such as Home Depot, Walgreens, CVS, Walmart, and Target, with global packaging consistency. That global consistency reports each aspect of a print job, including paper, inks, color, cut, fold, and even toxicity. It then scores the project and delivers the report to the brand and printer.

Norka became GMI certified in 2017 and has over 39 years of printing experience. We can confidently say that new project submissions will exceed expectations. We strive for only Platinum/Gold scoring ranges. Working carefully and diligently alongside our customers to understand characteristics crucial to their brand integrity is key to our success.

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