7th Annual Innopack Pharma Confex 2018

Saturday, February 10, 2018

Flint Group announces new name for partner company – Eston Chimica

Eston Chimica, a leading supplier of inks and coatings to package printers in Italy and Southern Europe, announces a change in its company name and logo. Effective February 1, 2018, the new company name is Eston Chimica, a Flint Group Company.

In December 2017, Flint Group, a prominent global supplier of inks and coatings to the printing and packaging industry, announced the acquisition of Eston Chimica which manufactures and sells water-based inks for flexo and gravure applications. The company supports key Paper & Board applications, such as corrugated, shopping bags, paper bags, and various other water-based print jobs.

Doug Aldred, President Packaging Inks for Flint Group, comments, “Flint Group is extremely pleased, and proud, to add Eston Chimica to their family and understands the importance of the Eston Chimica brand. The respect, customer loyalty, and name recognition of Eston Chimica weighed heavily on the company’s decision to retain the Eston Chimica brand alongside the Flint Group name. The identities, presented together, highlight the new and combined strength of the companies.”

Mr. Nicola Mellon, General Manager Paper & Board Italy and former CEO of Eston Chimica, says, “Flint Group recognises the strong value in the Eston Chimica name. The entire team of Eston Chimica has built an organisation which has grown, prospered, and is well known in the Paper & Board business segment. We look forward to a strong relationship going forward – one that benefits our internal staff and provides best in class products, services and solutions to the packaging industry in Europe and beyond.”

Starting from early February, customers and industry partners will see the new look of the Eston Chimica brand as the partnership between the two leaders continues to grow and strengthen.

Remarkable wins for Bobst customers and its technology partner Graphilabel at FlexoStars 2017

The inventor of the revolutionary THQ printing technology took away the Prix de l’Innovation at the competition for the best work in flexographic printing. The jury also gave awards (FlexoStars) to four Bobst Group customers for the quality of their work in the corrugated cardboard category.

“Before THQ technology was invented, printing professionals using flexography couldn’t reproduce an image’s full richness and emotion on a product package. The color range was restrained and ordinary printing on corrugated cardboard was impossible due to the fluting. Reproducing a motif in color necessarily meant reducing quality. THQ has changed all of that,” said Didier Guenu, founder of Graphilabel, in Rheims, France, who received the Prix de l’Innovation on behalf of the company during the FlexoStars competition on December 14, 2017, in Saint-Malo, France. Organized by ATF Flexo (the French flexography association), the awards honor the best flexographic printing work every year.

Dubbed THQ, the technology developed by Graphilabel produces printed images with reproduction quality unequalled in the packaging market. Bobst has partnered with Graphilabel since 2015 and holds exclusive rights to this process for corrugated cardboard. Under the name BOBST THQ FlexoCloud, Bobst markets a flexographic post-print solution devoted to corrugated cardboard and available on a wide range of the brand’s new flexographic post-print machines.

Thanks to the exceptional quality of the images it can print, Bobst THQ FlexoCloud technology is opening flexography to markets previously restricted to offset and photogravure. The rendering can reach very high definition far greater than 350 lines per centimeter, and the cheaper tools associated with the flexographic process allow very competitive production costs for short and medium runs.

Nano messages and traceability
“Thanks to the THQ process, now flexography can also meet brand owners’ new needs for package authentication and traceability,” said Didier Guenu, whose company has been active for more than 30 years in encryption of fiduciary documents and security documents. A color separation algorithm allows very effective anti-counterfeit printing using “nano messages” invisible to the naked eye.

Bobst THQ FlexoCloud technology, which can be installed on several of the brand’s flexographic press and combination models, relies on three key elements: the THQ ceramic cylinders (supplied by Bobst), the THQ CMYK inks and the varnishes for very demanding jobs (supplied by Siegwerk exclusively for THQ FlexoCloud customers) and the THQ printing plates (supplied by Graphilabel).

“It’s a flexographic solution that’s very easy to use on corrugated cardboard and provides crucial advantages for users of flexographic equipment,” explains Dominique Ravot, Sales and Marketing Director at Bobst Lyon. These advantages include:
  • Print image quality as good or better than offset.
  • Four-color reproduction with a wider range of tones, thanks to an algorithm that covers 65% of the color gamut.
  • Special THQ CMYK inks that can be used throughout the printing process, ensuring shorter machine calibration times and substantial savings (up to 30% on ink, on average, compared to the standard flexographic process).
  • A high-performance flexographic post-print technology for reproducing images on corrugated cardboard without “rib” effects and in one pass.

Remarkable wins for Bobst customers at the FlexoStars 2017
In addition to the Prix de l’Innovation, the FlexoStars competition awards the best flexographic printed work in 15 different categories of packaging and labeling. For this 31st edition, 124 works were submitted for assessment by the jury. This year, Bobst flexographic machines racked up a remarkable record of achievement. Of the six awards presented for printing on corrugated cardboard, four were awarded to Bobst customers. 

Launched by the Group during a technical seminar held by Bobst Lyon in spring 2017, BOBST THQ FlexoCloud technology immediately impressed flexography experts and the brand’s customers with its high performance. Promotion of this process has stimulated a great deal of interest on the market, and several orders are in process. In 2018, Bobst will deliver to its first customers, who will then have the opportunity to take home awards from the next FlexoStars event, thanks to their work done in THQ.

Durst and Omet unveil XJET Hybrid Printing Solution at Durst Digital Days

Durst, manufacturer of advanced digital production technologies, together with Omet, manufacturer of printing and converting machines, have strengthened their collaboration with the introduction of the new Omet XJet. Powered by Durst, the integrated hybrid solution for a wide range of high-performance labels and packaging printing guarantees flexibility and cost savings.

The jewel in the crown of the Durst and Omet partnership, the new Omet XJet, is being officially presented to more than a 100 customers from across the globe at Durst’s Digital Days at its Italian headquarters in Brixen, northern Italy. The three-day event is dedicated to the best digital label and packaging printing solutions. 

The Omet XJET is the new hybrid printing platform integrating Durst’s Tau 330 digital inkjet system with Omet X6 flexo stations and converting units. It can offer an unlimited flexibility and a wide range of final applications with a consistent cost reduction thanks to the in-line multi-process configuration. Durst inkjet technology together with Omet X6’s finishing and converting units like cold foil, hot foil, lamination, varnishing, die-cutting and slitting assure reliability and excellent results at every run, with the advantage of obtaining the final product in one single passage.

The Omet XJet is powered by Durst Tau RSC, the high-performance UV inkjet printing press featuring 330 mm (13”) print width with maximum print speed of 78 linear meters/min (245 ft./min) at 1200 x 1200 dpi resolution. Thanks to its eight color stations (CMYK+W+OVG) with new designed high pigmented inks it delivers outstanding print quality with 98% Pantone color gamut coverage.

The hybrid solution broadens the opportunities for label printers thanks to its flexible configuration. It can be seen as three presses in one as it can be used as hybrid solution, flexo stand-alone or digital stand-alone according to the length of the run or the level of personalization required. This concept can help optimize production time and costs, getting faster ROI and open new market opportunities.

Helmuth Munter, Segment Manager Labels & Package Printing at Durst comments: “We are very pleased to partner Omet in the launch of this highly professional hybrid printing solution. It combines the best technologies of both, the digital inkjet printing and conventional pre- and post press printing and finishing world, offering our common future customers a highly cost effective and complete “all-in-one” printing process.”

Marco Calcagni, Omet Sales and Marketing Director, added: “We managed to create a complete Made-in-Italy printing solution that meets the market trends of personalization, just-in-time deliveries and final product variation, but also maintaining all the capabilities of a conventional press. I believe that Durst is the right partner for such a challenging project because they have deep knowledge and the best digital inkjet technology acknowledged by the international market.”

New research highlights personalised packaging trends

Demand for personalised packaging is becoming an industry norm
New research suggests that demand for personalised packaging is becoming an industry norm and is increasingly being integrated into companies’ packaging strategies. 66% of packaging professionals who took part in the study stated that the personlisation of packaging is something they are currently implementing into their offering, or at least considering. In addition to this 89% of those questioned believe that this trend will only increase over the next two to three years.

Over 335 leading brand owners, retailers, suppliers, agencies and packaging professionals took part in the study, which was commissioned for a report by Packaging Innovations, the UK’s largest annual event for the whole packaging supply chain, and ThePackHub, the leading UK packaging innovation consultancy.

James Drake-Brockman, Divisional Director for the Packaging Portfolio at Easyfairs, said, “Our show provides a place for suppliers and the buying community to meet, network and do business, so we need to have our finger on the pulse in terms of industry trends, especially if we want to make sure we have the right mix of people and innovation at the show. In order to generate some industry intelligence, we teamed up with ThePackHub to better understand the dynamics of the personalisation market, and explore the influences and challenges facing this sector.”

When asked how involved in personalisation projects the packaging professionals were, 66% stated that they are currently undergoing ventures or are considering projects that have a personalised packaging element. When these statistics are broken down further, it highlighted that nearly three quarters (73%) of brand owners and three fifths (60%) of suppliers have either done or were considering doing a personalised packaging project within the past year.

The survey identified the main benefits of undertaking this type of packaging activity, with increasing consumer engagement (87.9%) and brand awareness (86.1%) both selected as main impacts. The data also showed that nearly two thirds (63.7%) felt that personalised packaging increases sales, while over half (52.8%) felt that personalisation projects have a positive impact on consumer loyalty.

In terms of challenges, financial factors topped the list, with 73% of those surveyed stating that financial constraints and the perceived on-cost of personalised packaging activity would hinder their willingness to undertake personalised packaging projects. This number actually rose to 80% when brand owners were questioned specifically. Interestingly, the data also suggests that technology is advanced enough to withstand this type of project, with only 29% of professionals highlighting technology as being a potential issue. Demand also seems to have increased, with a mere 17% selecting it as a challenge facing them.

Each respondent was also asked to identify a personalised packaging campaign that has stood out for them. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the Coca Cola ‘Share a Coke’ campaign topped the poll, followed by KitKat, with Marmite also receiving several mentions. 

James Drake-Brockman, concludes: “There have been several high profile personalised packaging initiatives to come to market in recent time. I would agree that the Coca Cola campaign jumps straight out to me. We have already seen more interest from our attendees this year looking to identify suppliers and opportunities within the personalised packaging market. This coupled with the recent advancements in digital print for packaging technology, spells a really exciting time for the industry. With all of this in mind, we designed our show to help educate the packaging community through a conference programme, at-show features and leading international suppliers.”

For further information about Packaging Innovations, which takes place at Birmingham’s NEC on 28 February and 1 March, please visit www.easyfairs.com/PIUK

Friday, February 9, 2018

Bobst AluBond: A Breakthrough in High Metal Adhesion

The Bobst AluBond process provides high metal adhesion and surface energy levels through vacuum metallization. A common problem is poor metal adhesion due to de-lamination. Traditional metallization, even with plasma treatment, can result in poor metal to polymer substrate bonding, this produces de-lamination which leads to packaging failure and results in product rejects and loss of reputation. 

Part of the problem is low surface energy on the metal side which also contributes to poor lamination bonding. There is increasing demand in the industry for higher levels of metal adhesion on metallized film due to the need for more complex packaging structures which requires a lamination peel strength suitable for functional needs.

Bobst AluBond eliminates the need for chemically treated films
Bobst has developed an innovative approach to address this common issue in the packaging industry through its vacuum metallizers, eliminating the need for chemically treated films.

High bonding strength is achieved on any substrate with the Bobst AluBond unique metallizing process. This is an advanced metal adhesion technology where metal adhesion values can be achieved of up to 5N/15mm.

What is Bobst AluBond
The Bobst AluBond process is an in-line hybrid coating technology which promotes chemical anchoring (chelation) of the first aluminium particles creating a metallizing seeding layer that provides superior bond strength properties.

Very high adhesion is achieved when there are direct chemical bonds between the aluminium coating and the polymer surface. Increased chemical bonding by the creation of the seeding layer increases lamination bond strength and leads to high performance during lamination, extrusion and coating processes hence preventing failure of the packaging. 

Increases in Metal Adhesion and Dyne Level Retention
Bobst AluBond has been shown to greatly increase metal bond strength and metal adhesion on the most commonly used substrates (PET, BOPP, CPP and PE) during aluminium vacuum metallization. 

In addition Bobst AluBond has also been shown to significantly increase dyne level retention which translates in improved ink wettability during printing and enhances structure stability during lamination. Bobst AluBond generates added value by extending surface energy stability on metallized films over a long period of time and may eliminate the need for an additional surface treatment boost i.e. corona refresh prior to converting.

Safeguard the barrier properties in the laminate structure through the Bobst AluBond high metal adhesion process to provide the required shelf life for your packaging. To find out more about this innovative process and to see it taking place inside the Bobst K5 Expert, take a look at their animated video – www.bobst.com/k5expert

Label Expert, Oak Printing, plans to expand capacity with Koenig & Bauer Rapida 105 PRO Eight-Color

When a customer lifts a cold craft beer to their lips or dips a brush into a can of paint, the product’s label probably made a difference in choosing that particular brand. There’s no denying how important labeling is to product packaging. It helps to evoke certain consumer behavior and entices a shopper to choose a certain brand and make a purchase. No one recognizes this more than Oak Printing, a nearly 100-year-old leading manufacturer of paper labels. Its customers, including some of the leading names in the paint, craft beer, and other markets, demand high quality, color consistency, and fast throughput to ensure that their products will be noticed by consumers and are brought to market in a timely manner. 

To continue to answer this mandate, Oak took delivery this fall of a new Koenig & Bauer Rapida 105 PRO 41-inch eight-color press at its 55,000 sq ft facility in Strongsville, OH, just south of Cleveland. With this massive investment, Oak Printing is signaling to its clients that it is serious about adding the highest degree of technology all in an effort to benefit its customers. Extra capacity plus new technology equals massive opportunity for Oak Printing.

“We produce labels for well-known brands in the country as well as some specialized start-ups,” says Michael Kisha, Oak’s vice president of manufacturing. “Our labels can be found on millions of paint cans from leading manufacturers as well as some of the country’s most popular breweries. What differentiates Oak Printing from our competitors is our willingness to go the extra mile for them. What do I mean by that? Take a craft beer manufacturer; they order from us very creative labels expressing their niche beer and expect their labels to communicate its uniqueness and be available when their beer is ready to be bottled. We have to be ready to do whatever it takes to assure they get their beer out to consumers on time. Our motto is to always serve the customer.”

With older non- Koenig & Bauer offset presses on its production floor, Oak was seeking to capitalize on the latest unique automated technology in the market. After spending a year and a half researching presses—both used and new---and logging nearly 25,000 air miles for various demos and meetings, Kisha made the critical decision to partner with KBA. “After all,” he says, “this is a key investment for our company and for our customers.” 

The Rapida 105 PRO being installed at Oak Printing is equipped with a host of unique automated Koenig & Bauer technology that can handle a variety of substrates. Oak primarily uses C1S (Coated One Side) sheets up to 60-70 lbs for its paint can labels and WS material as light as 40 lbs for its craft beer customers. 

What drove his decision to choose Koenig & Bauer? There were many factors, says Kisha, both large and small. Most significantly, Oak will be able to double its capacity with the speed and automation of the new Koenig & Bauer Rapida 105 PRO and continue to grow, possibly to move into new markets. Another consideration was the trusted relationship between KBA North America and Oak Printing. “The sales team was first class,” says Kisha. “They were very professional, responded with urgency to all of our requests, but at the same time did not provide a high pressured sale. Plus, we were impressed with the entire Koenig & Bauer business model: the unique way it manufactures its presses, the firm’s expert service and tech team, as well as the follow-up support. I watched a training session and was impressed with its one-on-one attention to detail.

“What really excited our entire team including our press operators is the integrated quality control camera feature on press. This automated system lends itself to getting up to color faster and maintaining color consistency all across the sheet. That’s very important to our customers, many of whom are in the color business. All of our labels have to be consistent across a home center store shelf, grocery aisle, or bar.”

In the meantime, Oak will be running the new Koenig & Bauer press as its key workhorse press. “Our labels need to capture a consumer’s attention,” says Kisha. “Designers, especially for the craft brews, are incorporating unusual and surprising designs and images, contrasting colors, decorative and inventive artwork. This new Koenig & Bauer press will enable us to produce those labels faster, more efficiently, and more productively. It’s an exciting time to work at Oak Printing.”

Durst launches P5 next-generation technology platform

Durst, a manufacturer of advanced digital printing and production technologies, has launched a new printing platform – the P5 series. The first member of the family is the large format printing flagship, P5 250 HS, with shipping starting from April.

The P5 250 HS is targeted towards high volume industrial production, as well as one-offs in offset quality. P5 relates to five core features at the heart of this technology: productivity, reliability, workflow, versatility and print quality.

The P5 technology consists of a series of new generation printers along with newly, in-house developed software and workflow solutions. The family also has state of the art, touch operation based user- interfaces and leading-edge remote service capabilities. Everything is aimed and streamlined to maximize performance and uptime of the printing family, along with unparalleled flexibility in media and job handling.

Durst’s iconic industrial design, which was originally developed by the famous Ottl Eicher, has gone a further step with the P5. A design studio from Munich canvassed opinions from many customers and operators with a view to integrating their wishes into a new concept. This has been achieved for the P5 – and feedback will be incorporated into many Durst product lines in the future.

When compared to the industry benchmark – Durst P10 250 HS – the new P5 is 70% more productive. Featuring latest MEMS nozzle plates powered by Durst proprietary data-path and electronics, the result is a high-speed printing system with ultra precise drop placement and industrial level reliability.

Durst P5 technology features:
• Print volume capability in two-pass mode up to 240 sqm/h and high resolution modes of 1200 dpi
• Offset printing quality with a drop-size of 5 pcl
• Durst Analytics information platform for pre-emptive maintenance and detailed machine and consumption data to guarantee maximum uptime
• Durst Workflow, which provides an in-house developed suite of applications custom tailored for Durst printers and with unique features - beyond ripping.

Christoph Gamper, Chief Executive of Durst Group, said: “The new P5 platform, including workflow software and advanced service tools, represents our key strategy to further invest into large format printing technology and further afield. We believe that there is a lot to explore in this market space and the P5 250 HS is our first statement. In an integrated world, printers need to change as well. With the P5 family we provide tools for change and profit – and our firm commitment to continue to lead the innovation in the large format market.”

CV Labels Installs First Mark Andy Digital One in UK

One of the UK’s leading converters of pharmaceutical, healthcare, and medical labels has chosen a Mark Andy Digital One press as part of a major investment programme in technology and a new extension at its headquarters in Irvine, Scotland.  CV Labels, which was founded in 1989, moved into the pharma market in 2008, following a major decline in Scotland’s electronics sector, which moved manufacturing to Eastern Europe and Asia.

CV Labels, co-founder and owner Robert (Bob) Veitch commented: “While we were able to grow our business in the electronics field, the pharmaceutical industry is far more stable – but it does require strict process controls with a highly trained work force.”  Veitch brings all of his 45 years of label industry experience to bear on running a successful business that currently employs 24 staff and generates around £2.5m sales each year. 

“Our plan is to double our sales by 2022, which is why we have just added a new 7,000sq/ft production hall dedicated to digital print – it will complement the three flexo presses we have,” he added.  With son Ross and daughter Susan (Sales Director), Veitch is future-proofing his considerable investment.  He commented: “Moving into pharma requires strict GMP processes, where safety and security are paramount– that’s why we are certified to PS9000 with 100% inspection processes.”

The decision to move into digital print was largely prompted by the ever-shortening run lengths that CV Labels is experiencing, with some jobs requiring as few as 100 – 200 meters of substrate.  With customers requiring quality digital labels for pharma, Veitch knew he needed to look closely at what the market had to offer.  “We looked at four or five different manufacturers but chose Mark Andy because of their history and commitment to the label industry.  Everything about the Digital One press was already well proven, and we liked the fact that we could print and convert in one pass,” he explained.

The servo driven Digital One is a dry toner-based press, that is designed to offer high quality at an entry level investment.  It has a 330mm web width and can handle a variety of substrates, without the need to use the full web width.  It prints CMYK at 1200dpi at speeds up to 19m/min, while its flexo station can add spot color, varnishing, laminating, or cold foil, before die cutting and slitting.  It is fitted with an air-cooled LED-UV lamp, and requires only a single-phase power supply.

CV Labels carried out extensive print trials on existing jobs with all of the manufacturers under consideration.  “But, it was the samples we produced in Mark Andy’s UK showroom that were by far the best, with the black being particularly sharp,” according to Bob Veitch.  Mark Andy was also the only manufacturer to offer a guarantee on any width of substrate up to 330mm.  On the basis of these results, CV Labels ordered a Digital One at Labelexpo 2017 in Brussels and it was installed in November. 

To date the company has run PP, standard label papers and light card through the press on run lengths from 30 to 900m.  Most recently, PP with a metallized backing has been in use.  Two other factors were key to CV Labels choosing the Mark Andy – first, there is no click charge, and second, the dies from the company’s existing flexo presses were all compatible.

“We see the crossover point between flexo and digital at around 1000m, depending on the job, but the capability of going to 330mm wide on the Digital One from 280mm on our flexo lines means that we have an increased capability, and our MIS software gives us a hands-on view of costings, which takes all the guesswork out of job planning,” explained Veitch.  With ambitious plans for the company and the next generation of family management already in place, Bob Veitch sees the new Mark Andy as the first in a series of digital investments.

The company holds all of the key industry accreditations for its work, including PS 9000:2016 from the Pharmaceutical Quality Group (PQG), ISO 9001:2015 from BSI for GMP, and UL Certification for safety in product manufacturing.  To ensure security, CV Labels is self-sufficient from studio to delivery, and as well as having full on-press inspection, it has invested in an Eye-C Proofiler, which digitally compares scanned print samples against proofs.  It appears that CV Labels is well-equipped to face the challenges posed by its ambitious growth plans.

Thursday, February 8, 2018

Dalim Software launches Dalim ES 5.5 Media Production Platform

Offering a wide, significant range of new features, including new, easy-to-use interface, file management capabilities,  deep learning abilities and key performance indicators, Dalim Software has announced the release of Dalim ES 5.5, loaded with many new features—a significant update to a major version released just within the past year.

Dalim ES (Enterprise Solution) is a media production platform for marketing partners and media services companies—for example, studios, retailers, brand owners and their respective creative agencies—in short, anyone whose responsibilities touch upon the media production process. Companies use DALIM ES to store, manage, locate, and drive omnichannel projects, from print to Web to video. With Dalim ES 5.5, all activities—in-house or externally—are coordinated from design to final print, including regulatory compliance, localization and versioning to ensure efficiency. It extends the productivity of digital asset management, making project management, collaboration and review of files even easier and faster.

Dalim ES has performed well this year at the Great DAM Bake Offs at Henry Stewart conferences. Dalim ES has also received 10 Core Certification by former principals of the DAM Foundation Board. This certification is widely viewed as an elite status and prerequisite acknowledgement that a system satisfies the minimum ten characteristic requirements of a successful DAM system.

“Recently, Dalim ES was also identified as one of the Digital Asset Management vendors of the year 2017 by Mark Davey, founder of The Codified DAM Consultant. In particular, DALIM ES was listed in the top 5 in terms of value for cloud proclivity within the Ten Core DAM Characteristics, cloud proclivity with Amazon, and for customer support within the Ten Core DAM Characteristics,” explains Frédéric Sanuy, DALIM SOFTWARE Director of Marketing and Enterprise Solutions. ”That’s not bad for a newcomer among the many, more expensive, applications. DALIM ES can deploy quickly and much less costly than comparable systems.”

DALIM ES 5.5 enables fast approval cycles and easy collaboration. With DALIM ES, users can manage their campaigns as a whole, creating all components of the entire marketing mix—for example, including cross-links between media content and collateral materials. New features include:

Completely redesigned and more sophisticated workflow editor, rewritten with a new user-friendly interface to create, edit and organize workflows. It is now simple to drag and drop tasks into place, and to make—and undo—changes. Administrators can scale the workflow diagrams, zooming in and out easily locate specific tasks. Groups of tasks can easily be copied and placed wherever needed.

Dalim Software is delivering significant enhancements for cross-channel distribution of its Digital Virtual Library (DVL) to facilitate integration and enhance their own electronic pubs. DVL is available on a variety of stores, including the Windows Store, Apple Store and Google Play—and multiple devices, like Windows, Mac IOS, and Android. The same app can be used for desktop and mobile devices—a software developer’s kit allows users to create their own apps on IOS, OSX and Android. 

“We are extremely pleased not only with industry analysts’ acceptance of the Dalim ES DAM capabilities, but also with the speed at which we have built the system. However, what is more important is that Dalim ES combines DAM proficiency to the core of Dalim Software expertise: automated media production. Briefly, this one application simplifies the design of a project workflow for all partners in the creative production supply chain, and manages complete marketing campaigns. It's about bringing order to complexity,” comments Carol Werlé, Dalim Software CEO. “Dalim ES offers a considerable number of new features that helps brands and production companies increase speed, standardize workflows, and easily streamline content communication to improve the ROI.”

Hop Industries Issues Trends Report on the Growth in UV and LED Digital Printing

Hop Industries, manufacturer of the durable Hop-Syn synthetic paper, today announces a new trends report about the proliferation, and its contributing factors, of UV and LED digital printing. Fast emerging as a cost-effective and high-quality alternative to traditional printing methods such as offset and flexo, UV and LED digital printing has several notable advantages. The report highlights these advantages, as well as the sustainability factors that are driving print service providers (PSPs) to embrace UV and LED technologies. These include durable substrates designed for UV and LED printing, which are also environmentally-friendly, such as Hop-Syn synthetic paper. Hop-Syn comes in multiple grades, and delivers high quality results on leading digital printers such as EFI and swissQprint, recently featured at SGIA Expo 2017.

“Technological innovations are rapidly evolving for UV and LED printing, and with it comes new applications and choices,” comments Jack Smith, Senior Vice President, Hop Industries. “Our newest report is a helpful guide to understanding this new market segment, and the environmental implications that can either make or break customers’ sustainability mandates.”

Additionally, Hop’s new report addresses shifts in marketing trends, which are contributing to the quick adoption of UV and LED printing. The report addresses the move from a one-size-fits-all brand marketing approach to more targeted communications. It also highlights the increasing demand for more sustainable, environmentally friendlier printing processes, inks, and substrates such as Hop-Syn synthetic paper. Hop-Syn is 100% recyclable, and meets RoHS and CONEG certifications, and is produced under ISO 9001 standards.

A free copy of the trends report, "Growth in UV and LED Digital Printing," is available upon request. 

Logopak to present modular print & apply-systems for the food industry

Logopak offers a variety of high-performance labelling systems to meet the demands of the food industry. At Anuga FoodTec (Cologne, Germany, 20-23 March 2018, hall 8.1, stand 58) the manufacturer will introduce its latest print & apply solutions for efficient labelling of a wide range of packaging types. Highlights include a new multi-format system for point of sale labelling of food packaging in non-stop operation.

At the exhibition stand, Logopak will display extensive print & apply solutions for all packaging stages in the food industry.

Efficient point of sale labelling
The new Logopak systems achieve high-capacity, high-precision application of labels onto various packaging types to meet the particular demands of point of sale labelling. The multi-format series of machines enables operators to print labels of various sizes on a single labelling system. Thanks to Logopak’s tried and tested applicator technology, the labels can be applied efficiently and in a variety of ways.

High-capacity secondary labelling
With a capacity of up to 140 units per minute, the new Logopak labellers prove a highly versatile option in secondary labelling of cardboard boxes, trays and shrink wraps. The applicators enable top, bottom, front, double, single, over the corner, multi-sided and wrap-around labelling with maximum precision.

Pallet labelling according to GS1 standard
Logopak’s pallet labellers label up to 240 pallets per hour in non-stop operation. With 20 different applicators, labels up to A3 can be applied automatically in various positions and orientations. This allows labelling according to GS1 standard and easy identification of the pallet via the Serial Shipping Container Code (SSCC). For added safety, the machines include a protective cover and a fully automatic flap control.

Uninterrupted track and trace
All of Logopak’s print & apply systems are available with RFID (radio-frequency identification) or can be retrofitted with an RFID applicator to ensure uninterrupted tracking and tracing. From labelling to traceability, the labellers meet all legal requirements, standards, EU regulations and guidelines for the food industry.

Hybrid Software once again confirms its leading position in the graphic arts sector.

Hybrid Software has announced its financial results for 2017, and once again confirmed its position as the fastest growing software development company in the graphic arts sector. The company’s turnover for 2017 was approximately Euro 15 million, an increase of almost 70% compared with 2016. Despite increasing the number of employees by more than 30% during 2017, Hybrid  Software’s EBITDA margin for the year was still an impressive 25%.

“During the last year we’ve concentrated on three core values - excellence, responsibility and innovation,” says Guido Van der Schueren, Chairman of the Board. “Excellence is based around ensuring our products achieve the highest performance possible for our customers, while our responsibility towards customers means that we are totally committed to them in everything we do. We have always strived to be a pioneer and in this area we use innovative technology to create the greatest value for our customers.

“Hybrid Software’s focus on the labels and packaging sectors has made us a leader in these markets, which have continued to perform well during challenging years in other parts of the graphic arts industry. We enter 2018 in an ideal position, with an extremely strong global customer base and a product portfolio that is unrivalled and which is increasingly seeing Hybrid Software win major orders from key players.”

Wednesday, February 7, 2018

Manipal International Printing Press opts for another Lombardi Synchroline flexo press along with Vinsak USAR slitter inspection rewinder

Manipal International Printing Press has opted for another Lombardi Synchroline flexo press along with Vinsak USAR slitter inspection rewinder for its plant in Africa. Vinsak, the exclusive distributor of Lombardi presses in India, the Middle East and Africa, will soon install the 430mm wide, 10-color press at the company’s plant in Nigeria. Manipal is already running a Lombardi press, Vinsak USAR 530 and a thermal inkjet system for variable data at its plant in Kenya.

Started in 1941, Manipal International Printing Press has grown with the times to embrace the latest in technology, and to offer clients quality and punctuality at costs that make business sense. MIPL prints a large variety of products including self adhesive labels of different types, commercial, security & business forms, shrink sleeves, digital publications and all different sorts of printing.

Pritam Choudhary, director at MIPPL says, “Vinsak installed machines at our Kenya plant three months back. The combination of Synchroline with Vinsak USAR has made a lot of our print jobs easier. We were able to print on diverse substrates with a quick turnaround time. The main advantage, however, was that we were able to explore more of Kenya’s packaging market as we can print on 12-micron film to 450gsm boards. We wanted to expand our capacity of the Nigerian printing plant, hence a repeat order to Vinsak.”

Talking of the repeat order by MIPPL, Ranesh Bajaj director at Vinsak said: “It’s a wonderful experience to know that years of planning and efforts have started paying off. We are extremely pleased to receive a repeat order from Manipal. It’s good to see a positive response from printing industry for the Lombardi Synchroline press and Vinsak USAR. We are continuously developing and adding new features to our in-house product with the hope to match the rising expectations of packaging industry from Vinsak.”

A leader in the industry, MIPPL is is responsive to market changes, with a common goal of customer satisfaction and sales growth. A company that brings value to its customers and provides superior returns to investors, MIPPL is the only press in Africa that provides composite packaging solution to its end customers for brand protection, with its R&D team working round the clock to provide customer solutions to protect their brands from counterfeit labels.

As the leading printing solutions provider in Africa, MIPPL aims at giving customers the best printing experience, in terms of product development, product quality, on-time deliveries and improved printing platforms from time-to-time. Hence it was imperative of MIPPL to choose a provider that has a good back end support. Talking of support from Vinsak, Choudhary added: “A machine worth millions becomes useless if you don’t have a good service backup. We are extremely happy with Vinsak for active service and support systems and hope they continue to provide such quality products.”

Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Ritrama Direct Thermal Linerless: The Evolution of the Species

The evolution of the species - This claim could ideally group and show all linerless products for thermal printing which Ritrama has designed and developed over the years to comply with EU Regulation 1169/2011.

This regulation requires that retailers include a list of ingredients in their food labels, such as nutritional values and possible allergens and the origins of the food. The retailer therefore needs labels with different sizes depending on the information to be shown and Ritrama Direct Thermal Linerless provides the solution.

The technical evolution of the species
Direct Thermal Linerless products are the latest innovation of the labelling sector: they are continuous rolls of thermal paper with no liner (siliconised backing). An innovative labelstock without release, which does not produce any extra waste. A reduced environmental impact because there is no liner to be disposed of. A higher rate of productivity because it allows producing over 40% more labels per roll as less rolls need replacing, which leads to a significant reduction in machine downtime. An economic advantage, too, because waste management, storage and transport costs are less. Many advantages, which combined with fast application and labelling accuracy, will serve the best interests of many sectors, from retail to logistics.

The range evolution
In order to meet labelling requirements in the retail sector, Ritrama has developed linerless products for thermal printing, available in several versions and colours. The offer includes the version with thermal paper in yellow, red, light blue, green and orange; then there is fluo thermal paper in the same colours and the pre-printed version, which can be customised with logos and text in up to eight colours.

And what does the future hold? We asked Sergio Veneziani, Product Manager of Ritrama's linerless range: "Sales volumes are growing significantly: January 2018 has already exceeded the forecasts we made at the end of 2017. As far as Retail is concerned, this positive trend surely depends on the fact that most traditional weight scales, which work with standard rolls, are being replaced with linerless scales. As for our products, Ritrama is currently working on a new version of Direct Thermal Linerless with a special adhesive for frozen products".

Al Jawad invests in Six-colour Rapida 106 with coater and logistics

Measurable factors such as population growth, economic prosperity and consumer behaviour form the generally accepted basis for predictions regarding the future demand for packaging. And the indicators are positive all over the world. In the Middle East, and especially in Saudi Arabia, an above-average increase in demand is expected. Saudi Arabia is today already importing packaging from the neighbouring countries.

In an economically strong and prosperous region in the east of the country, the Al Jawad Group has built up an outstanding reputation as a packaging supplier. One of Al Jawad’s specialities is flexible packaging for the food and detergent industries, while the offset printing department produces primary and secondary packaging on a diversity of substrates up to and including corrugated board. This calls for a correspondingly broad and flexible machinery base. At the same time, the company attaches great importance to the streamlining of production processes, as a means to raise efficiency and in turn competitiveness. To this end, Al Jawad invests regularly in new and productive technologies: The last acquisition, three years ago, was a six-colour sheetfed offset press with inline foiling unit and provisions for both conventional and UV applications.

For the most recent investment round in 2017, attention was concentrated on a conventional press with the highest possible level of automation. The outcome of many intensive discussions was the decision to purchase a six-colour Rapida 106 with coater, extended delivery and HighSpeed functionality from Koenig & Bauer. Further key features of this fast medium-format Rapida are automatic non-stop pile changing and logistics systems for the feeder and delivery. In addition, the ink rollers in the fifth printing unit can be washed parallel to production. The ability to disengage unused inking units from the main press drive has already been a standard feature on Rapida sheetfed offset presses for several decades.

Alongside the automation of the Rapida 106, printshop networking played a significant role. Print companies in Central Europe were forced to streamline operations and to integrate their various means of production many years ago, but the process is still in its infancy in other parts of the world. This represents a source of great potential for all concerned. In these emerging markets, therefore, Koenig & Bauer not only supplies the latest printing technologies, but also encourages the users to target greater cost awareness and efficiency. As a pleasing side effect, this at the same time contributes to more ecological production practices.

Ehsan Al Khars, general manager of Al Jawad, and Abdalah Al-Hareri, general manager of local Koenig & Bauer agency Al Kharafi, are both delighted with the excellent implementation of the project: “It is impressive to experience the production speeds of up to 20,000 sheets/hr on the Rapida 106. The new press replaces three older models from another manufacturer, but still offers ample production reserves. Over the course of the project, we found that the advice given by the Al Kharafi team was paramount in determining an optimum solution. This productivity gives us the desired differentiation and necessary lead on the market. We are looking forward to a long and fruitful partnership with Al Kharafi.”

Comexi celebrates its 15th anniversary in Brazil with record sales in the country

Comexi, specialist in solutions for printing and converting equipment for the flexible packaging industry, closed this 2017 with record sales in Brazil. Settled in this South-American country fifteen years ago, the company and its solutions are increasingly recognized in the sector, not only in Brazil, but also throughout the continent.

Since its establishment in Montenegro in 2002, in the Río Grande do Sul region, Comexi has strengthened its presence and its commitment to the Brazilian market, by producing more than 270 machines during this fifteen-year period. In Brazil, Comexi has 6.000 square meters in facilities where equipment is designed and manufactured for the local market, in addition to exporting according to the company’s industrial requirements. In this production plant in Brazil, the firm works under the highest quality standards, implemented by the headquarters. Alongside production and engineering, the branch also has administration, sales, technical and supply chain services.

Marc Boadas, General Manager at Comexi Brazil, stresses, “these first fifteen years are just the beginning of a very successful story that endorses the flexible packaging value chain”. Moreover, to enhance the growth objective in Brazil and South America, Comexi plans to launch three new presses by 2020.

Greater market share
According to Marc Boadas “the results of the Brazilian economy over the last months confirm that, after the economic crisis, the recovery is real and sustainable”. Comexi, with a competitive and high-end portfolio that has gained a rise in the confidence of its clients, with a sales record in 2017, reaching an outstanding market share of over 80%, as states the General Manager of the company in Brazil.

One of the major indicators of this growth is the Comexi F2 MC flexo press, launched in Brazil in 2016 and which has already gained great market acceptance, both nationally and internationally. In this sense, Comexi has installed more than a hundred machines of this successful family of F2 flexographic presses around the world. The group will continue to consolidate its leadership with the upcoming launch of new models: the Comexi F2 MB and the Comexi F4, thus improving competitiveness in the Brazilian market.

Monday, February 5, 2018

Cosmo Films commissions a New CPP line and a Metalizer

Cosmo Films, a global leader in films for packaging, lamination and labeling applications has announced commissioning of its second Cast Polypropylene (CPP) Line and fourth metalizer, both having annual capacity of 7500 MT.  With installation of these new lines, the company’s annual CPP films capacity will go from 1800 MT to 9300 MT and the metalized films will increase from 15000 MT to 22,500 MT.

These new lines have been commissioned at company’s existing facility at Karjan, near Vadodara, India which already houses BOPP lines, extrusion coating & chemical coating lines and a metalizer. The 2.85 meter CPP line is five-layered and is designed to produce speciality films (especially barrier films) for various packaging applications. The line has the possibility to have multilayer combinations. The new 2.85 meter metalizer is equipped with advanced control monitoring system and closed loop auto deposition control system. The facility at Karjan has been developed keeping future expansions in mind.

Speaking on the development, Mr. Pankaj Poddar, CEO, Cosmo Films Ltd said, “Apart from being a focussed BOPP player over the years, we have made significant efforts in recent times to become a complete film solution provider with more and more films to offer along with various value added services. Moreover there has been a dearth of organised CPP players in the market and with the expansion of our capacity; we shall be better suited to serve our customers.  The new lines are also expected to help increase the overall margins and volumes to some extent.” 

Established in 1981, Cosmo Films Limited today is a global leader in speciality films for packaging, lamination and labeling applications. Its films offerings include biaxially oriented polypropylene (BOPP) films, cast polypropylene (CPP) films and soon to be offered biaxially oriented polyethylene terephthalate (BOPET) films. Today, the company is the largest exporter of BOPP films from India and is also the largest producer of thermal laminating films in the world with plant cum distribution centres in the U.S, Korea & Japan and global channel partners in more than seventy countries.

Flex Films launches all new high barrier metallized polyester film

Metallized Polyester Films are increasing in popularity for imparting high barrier properties to laminated flexible packaging structures. However, it has been often experienced that poor adhesion of metal with the base polyester film can result in laminate failure, thereby decreasing product performance.

There has been an increasing demand for cost-effective films with high metal adhesion for superior barrier applications in harsh environments. However, the solutions that are currently available in the market are limited and costly.

With this problem statement at hand, Flex Films (USA) Inc. has engineered FLEXMETPROTECT F-HMB film which is a High Barrier Metallized Polyester Film. The film is either untreated or corona treated on the other surface, while metallization is carried out on the specially treated composite surface imparting metal adhesion or bond strength of > 1200 gram-force/inch.

Flex Films is the global film manufacturing arm of India’s largest multinational flexible packaging materials and solution company Uflex Limited. All the film manufacturing plants of Uflex, i.e. in India, UAE, Poland, Egypt, Mexico and USA can supply FLEXMETPROTECT F-HMB Film.

Talking more about the new development, Dr. Steven J. Sargeant, GM, Technology at Flex Films (USA) Inc. said, “The adhesion of metal on BOPET base film is the sum of chemical and mechanical adhesion. Our proprietary surface treatment on the base film allows increased levels of chelation or reaction with the metal being deposited, thereby resulting in a much better adhesion profile. The specialized surface treatment comprises materials with unique and enhanced properties thereby leading to much enhanced mechanical bonding. It took us almost 18 months to engineer this film.”

Explaining the benefits that the newly developed film brings to the convertors, and elaborating upon its use, Mr. Vijay Yadav, Business Head, Flex Films (USA) Inc. said, “The film offers class leading high adhesion to metal under most aggressive environmental conditions; demonstrates improved scuff, scratch and craze resistance thereby improving yields up to four percent and offering unparalleled robustness in processing and performance for converters; has OTR of 0.6 cc/m2/day at 23 degrees C & 0% RH and MVTR of 0.6 g/m2/day at 38 degrees C & 90% RH offering high barrier properties thereby bringing new concepts to the market; complies with EU and FDA regulations for food grade applications and happens to be cost effective. FLEXMETPROTECT F-HMB Film finds extensive use in Liquid Packaging, Stand Up Pouch Applications, Barrier layer in challenging applications like ‘Bag in Box’, Chemical Packaging, Pharma Packaging, Hot fill applications up to 80 degree C. among others. This film is available in 8 – 50 micron thickness range.”

Sharing his views about the potential of the new product, Mr. Anantshree Chaturvedi, Vice Chairman& CEO, Flex Films International – the global film manufacturing arm of Uflex Limited said, “Flex Films is focusing on speciality substrates that add real value to the business of convertors and that of their customers by enhancing the quality and profile of the resultant packaging. Our expansion strategy hereafter will be niche product driven and not commodity driven. FLEXMETPROTECT F-HMB is a technologically superior film with encouraging demand. If we talk about the US itself, the market for this specialized film is expected to be about 25% of the current metalized film market.”

Congratulating his engineers, Mr. Ashok Chaturvedi, Chairman & Managing Director, Uflex Limited said, “FLEXMETPROTECT F-HMB is a classic example of value engineering that shall bring substantial benefits and cheer to the converting fraternity not only in the US but globally. This is Innovation to Create Value Added Differentiation.”