Anyone who has been to a trade show in the past couple years wouldn’t be surprised to hear that inkjet printing solutions are moving hard and fast into the packaging arena. They are being offered in all shapes and sizes, but one thing they have in common is a propensity for cost-effective short-run printing.
More and more package printers are jumping onboard the inkjet express and with a good measure of success. What follows is a smattering of some of those success stories.
Digital print and cut
Beiler Printing is a small, family-owned printer located in Denver, Pa. Its printed products include labels, wedding invitations, holiday greeting cards, screen printed apparel, and promotional products and advertising specialties. Its printing capabilities include three sheetfed presses: a black and white digital, a 4-color digital, and a 2-color conventional. In May of last year, the company installed an Allen Datagraph iTech AXXIS Digital Label System (including the label printer and the label finisher), bringing its complete label production in-house as deadlines grew tighter and runs smaller.
Beiler produces labels for the local agricultural businesses that populate the area; many of the food products are packaged locally and sent directly to stores. Before installing the iTech AXXIS Digital Label System, the company farmed out its labeling work.
Beiler chose the Allen Datagraph solution over laser-based systems because it offered greater substrate flexibility. Because it isn’t heat-based, it can run polypropylenes, vinyls, and polyesters without concerns about melting the substrate. The company uses the system for all of its 4-color printing and finishing of custom labels, printing on a variety of substrates in run lengths averaging between 250 and 1,000.
Producing labels in-house, says Owner Bryon Beiler, has given the company “control over our destiny, as far as turnaround. We’ve been able to get more work, because the iTech AXXIS Digital Label System enables us to meet deadlines and provide a lower cost to our customers—as our consumables costs are very reasonable. We can turn work out in less than a day if we have to. Now that we’re doing the labels in-house, our profit margin is also much better—we doubled it.”