Eminence Business Media

Eminence Business Media

Thursday, September 26, 2013

The Uteco Group announces New Flexographic Print Solutions integrating Kodak Technologies

The buzzword in all sectors today is integration. The Uteco Group's integrated solution allows flexo printing to be united with digital printing. The result is an innovative system that expands the print possibilities offered by this dynamic combination of the two technologies.

The Uteco Group, based in Colognola ai Colli (VR), Italy, is a leading manufacturer of printing presses for a wide range of flexible packaging. It is installing two Kodak Prosper S20 Imprinting Systems, one black and one color, on an 8-color Uteco Onyx 810 flexo printing system.

Leonardo Gobbi, Commercial and Marketing Director of The Uteco Group, explains that “the consumer goods market, both food and non-food, has for many years now demanded a number of functions from packaging which go well beyond the original function of preserving the product, and is increasingly driving packaging towards the realm of marketing and communication. The printing of materials for packaging plays an essential part in this. The benefits of hybrid printing merge the flexibility and high productivity of flexographic printing with the unique capacity of digital printing to manage the variable data which customizes each individual print job and each individual packaging application. This is the direction taken in the integration efforts between The Uteco Group and Kodak: to be able to offer producers of printed packaging all the advantages of this integration between different technologies in order to achieve extremely innovative, customized and communicative printing”.

The S20 is a member of the Kodak Prosper S-Series Imprinting Systems, which include S5, S10 and S30 models. They all boast excellent print quality in overprinting jobs produced by other print processes, flexo in this case. They offer various print speeds and resolutions, for a high degree of customization.

The Kodak Prosper S-Series Imprinting Systems are easily integrated into existing production processes, allowing new advertising opportunities with highly targeted products and the creation of hybrid print applications: images, barcodes, lotteries, road maps and QR codes. These systems can help capitalize on investments made in offset presses and bridge the digital divide by adopting a one-step inline process.

Erwin Busselot, Marketing Director Digital Printing Solutions, Kodak has this to say: “The Uteco Group integration opens up new opportunities for the packaging world in its quest for innovation and development. Both companies have worked to create a hybrid system that combines the best of flexo and digital printing technologies. This shared commitment will enable The Uteco Group's customers to produce applications on a variety of media such as paper labels, tissue and flexible film. These possibilities generate added value not only in terms of the printed product but also for the brand owner and print buyer, who can easily access promotions, customized vouchers and much more”.

Hybrid flexo printing has arrived
The two Kodak Prosper S20 Imprinting Systems print in black plus one color with a print speed of 600 mpm, fully in line with the production speed of Uteco's flexo printing machine. The Kodak Prosper S-Series Imprinting System prints at a resolution of 600x300 dpi, the print width is 10.56 cm. The heads use Kodak Stream Inkjet technology, which allows the printing of high quality and long-lasting images not only on both uncoated and coated paper, including glossy coated paper and also on flexible media and plastic film: a goal that was achieved by the Uteco Group integration.

Stream Inkjet technology uses a continuous stream of ink which is supplied by the print head nozzles. This stream is broken into separate droplets which are in turn fired at high speed with a very high level of accuracy, to form high quality images.

The heads are positioned after the flexo printing and can be moved along the width of the reel, depending on the point where the printing of data or images is required. Cost has always been the Achilles' heel in the printing of high volumes of variable data. But that is no longer the case: this exceptional integration between flexographic and digital printing provides a virtually infinite number of applications and customization possibilities in the packaging sector, where creativity will be the only limit.

Kodak has transformed into a technology company focused on imaging for business. Kodak serves customers with disruptive technologies and breakthrough solutions for the product goods packaging, graphic communications and functional printing industries. The company also offers leading products and services in Entertainment Imaging and Commercial Films.