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Tuesday, August 3, 2021

Packaging and Labelling lead times slashed for brands with Esko Content Management Solution

Content Management in WebCenter from Esko is making significant time and cost savings for brands, with one multinational customer reducing its end-to-end labelling lead time from 14 weeks to just 14 days with structured content.

As a result of the global pandemic, consumers now place significantly more value on food safety and hygiene, according to McKinsey1. As brands adapt their packaging and labelling to meet changing regulations and legislation, it’s essential that speed to market must not come at the cost of accuracy to maintain consumer trust and confidence.

Matthew Haws, vice president global marketing at Esko Brand Solutions, said: “In reality, many businesses are still working with disconnected processes, which is a real minefield when it comes to approvals. In the case of heavily legislated industries, such as pharmaceuticals for example, it slows lead times down if multiple stakeholders are struggling to track various versions of both content and artwork for approval.”

The content management function of Esko workflow management software, WebCenter, which includes both packaging and structured elements, makes it simple for teams to specify, manage and reuse content to be used in artwork designs by connecting content and workflow directly in the artwork creation process.

Miraclon continues to expand the boundaries of flexo with PureFlexo printing launch

Miraclon, home of Kodak Flexcel Solutions, today hosted its first Miraclon Innovates virtual event to introduce PureFlexo Printing, which enables Kodak Flexcel NX System users to produce high-quality flexo print within a wider operating window on press by controlling unwanted ink spread in ways never seen before. Designed specifically for wide web solvent ink on film applications, PureFlexo Printing maximizes press efficiency, repeatability and overall performance while enabling printers and prepress providers to experience cleaner print, stable color and a better bottom line for their business.

Emma Schlotthauer, Chief Marketing Officer at Miraclon, comments: “For brands who rely more than ever on the power of packaging to connect with customers, brand consistency and eye-catching flexible packaging is increasingly important. Printers need solutions that help them meet the ever-expanding demands of graphic reproduction, without needing to operate at less than optimum production speeds or risking press downtime from continual adjustments and unscheduled stoppages. A wide print latitude is the key to profitable production. PureFlexo Printing addresses a core technical issue – unwanted ink spread – which helps to widen print latitude and reset the quality-efficiency balance.”

Print latitude, unwanted ink spread and why printers should address it
Printers get the best out of their press machinery when they have the flexibility to run uninterrupted. They need wide latitude (also referred to as the operating window) and a robust process to manage production efficiently as a narrow latitude means small changes can push a print run out of acceptable quality or tolerances. By resisting unwanted ink spread, PureFlexo Printing gives printers the power to keep the press running with a low risk of getting to unacceptable print.

Monday, August 2, 2021

Kodak Flexcel NX System Sets NS Digital Flexo on the Path to Flexo Pre-Press Success

“I think flexo is both the most challenging industry, and the most rewarding. The more you put in, the greater the benefits.”

For Shyam Sundar, partner at Hyderabad-based flexo prepress specialist NS Digital Flexo, meeting the challenges — and helping customers reap the benefits — started in March 2020, when the company opened for business with a new Kodak Flexcel NX System, supplied and supported by Miraclon.

Sundar describes NS Digital’s service offering as “all things flexo — wide web, labels, folding cartons, corrugated.” A notable feature of the company’s philosophy is the effort and time it puts into building relationships with customers and showing them the potential of the Flexcel NX System. Explains Sundar: “We really engage with each customer, so that we can see things from their perspective, and truly understand their current capabilities and practices. Then we show them how simple adjustments to their production practices — fingerprinting the press, for example — can improve efficiency without additional investments or press set-ups, because if we can work with the available resources, we save customers time and money.

“Next, we explain the further improvements and enhanced benefits achievable with Flexcel NX plates — how we can change anilox rollers and inks, reduce impression and generally introduce better control into the press environment.”

Efficiency made easy
With the Flexcel NX System it’s relatively easy for NS Digital to help customers become more efficient, Sundar continues. “The biggest benefit for us is the simplicity of making Flexcel NX plates. The flexo process can have many variables, but the Flexcel NX System either eliminates them or makes managing them really simple, which yields substantial savings throughout the whole packaging printing process. So as a service provider we can be totally confident we can provide customers with consistent, repeatable results. It also makes it easier to solve any print issues that arise, because we can eliminate the plates as a cause straightaway. With other solutions, the investigation is more complex — is it the file, or the software, or processing, or exposure, or the press?”

Sandy Alexander Installs “Flagship” Heidelberg Speedmaster XL 106 at Clifton Location

Sandy Alexander, a nationwide provider of integrated multi-channel graphic communication solutions, has installed a new Speedmaster XL 106-8P with Push-to-Stop technology from Heidelberg at its Clifton, NJ headquarters. The press, which is Heidelberg’s newest generation of Speedmaster machines, demonstrates Sandy Alexander’s continual commitment to providing the most technologically advanced solutions for its customers.

Despite the challenges that COVID-19 brought upon much of the printing industry, Sandy Alexander set a firm focus on its future when it began investigating new offset press options in 2020. “In good times and bad, we are committed to investing heavily in the company and in our customers,” said Mike Graff, CEO & President of Sandy Alexander. This commitment is in part why the fifty-five-year-old company was recently ranked #37 on Printing Impressions Top 350 list and why it has retained some clients for as many as thirty-five years.

Providing the best for its clients is also why Sandy Alexander selected the latest generation Speedmaster XL 106-8P for its newest investment. The new XL 106, which replaces an aging machine in the company’s Clifton facility, will be the “flagship” press for Sandy Alexander, who hopes to shift much of the offset work it produces for its high-end cosmetics, fashion, automotive, travel and entertainment, and restaurant clientele onto the machine. According to Graff, “Sandy Alexander has always ensured that it has the best equipment available. We look to Heidelberg as the leader in technology and high-quality print. We truly believe that this is the best machine out there.”

Having excellent rub resistance to water, oil, and solvents, the film has a high image density and optimum image quality

Cosmo Films Ltd., a global leader in specialty films for flexible packaging, labeling, and lamination applications as well as synthetic paper, re-launches BOPP based Direct Thermal Printable (DTP) Top Coated Film, with a proprietary coating which enables the formation of an image or impression on the film upon contact with the heated print head of a thermal printer.

A film specially designed for niche applications like information labelling (airport baggage tags etc.), inventory tracking, frozen food labeling, and parking ticket applications with a potential to grow in many new applications as well. This is part of the many specialty films offered by the company. A non-tearable, cost-effective, and extremely easy-to-use film offers a marvellous paper like matte finish producing a fine and sharp dark image on printing.

With no involvement of additional high equipment costs, the film is available in thickness varieties of 70, 75 and 95 microns. The film is designed in a way that it protects the privacy and primacy of sensitive information as the sensitive data is always imaged directly onto the BOPP DTP films.

On the product launch, Mr. Pankaj Poddar, CEO, Cosmo Films Ltd. said, “Being a global leader, we aim to keep growing exponentially and thrive to bring innovative products to our customers. The direct thermal printable film is extremely easy to use, and there are no additional high equipment costs. According to several reports, the global Direct Thermal market was valued at 491.2 Million USD in 2021 and will grow with a CAGR of 5.7% from 2021 to 2027. We look forward to being a big part with our innovation in the direct thermal printing market.”