February 2007 Issue


Be Bold

In-mold labeling (IML) is a product decoration method that has grown in popularity over the past 10 to 20 years. Why? Because it can provide lots of apple-pie type of stuff—improved quality and shelf appeal, reduced waste, reduced cost, and better durability. Who can argue with that? The IML process gets its name from how the label is applied to the plastic packaging container. The label is placed “in the mold” as the container itself is being formed. Plastic containers are produced using several different forming methods, including thermoforming, injection molding, and blow molding. To a large degree, the forming method used is

Can I Have Your Recipe?

In the world of packaging, CMYK is an appetizer, whetting but no longer satisfying end-users’ growing appetite for color. It stands to reason: color is arguably the most identifiable and valuable of all the assets associated with a given brand. And not just any color, but intense, vibrant color that differentiates a company from its competition, creates an irresistible emotional connection with the consumer; color that is the key component of high-impact graphics designed to grab a consumer’s attention and hold it long enough to trigger a purchase decision. With its limited gamut and ability to simulate only about 60 percent of standard

Demanding It All

Shorter print runs, green technology, the emergence of flexible packaging and UV inks, shorter makeready times, globalization—we’ve heard them all of late. Talk to almost any converter or print industry manufacturer and these buzz terms are likely to come up. Whether you’re a high- or low-volume converter, these issues impact the packaging industry in a variety of ways. Perhaps the most important result is that they push press manufacturers to continually evolve their products to keep up with the rapidly changing package-printing market. The challenges are the same for narrow- or wide-web press users. Shorter print runs are converters’ new realities, making shorter makeready

Full Speed Ahead

Commercial printers are moving into the world of packaging. Not all of them, but enough that it’s been getting a lot of attention over the past several years. Many times, the first approach is to print packaging items for existing clients that use paperboard materials—substrates commercial printers use routinely and are familiar with. In addition, they are up-to-speed on required colors and the demands placed on them by existing clients. Other package printing segments, such as traditional product labeling and printing of flexible packaging materials, would be much further down the pike—if in the business plan at all. From a business-strategy standpoint, commercial

Never Boring

Shorter runs—they are the reality for many package printers today. This reality can impact your slitters/rewinders by way of greater wear and tear, more frequent tool changes, and so on, but these are not the only packaging trends that affect the slitters/rewinders market. The myriad substrates available to converters alone impacts slitter/rewinder performance and construction. Thank the emergence of flexible packaging for the increased substrate requirements. All these factors will impact your business in terms of what equipment you buy—a typical rewinder versus a turret rewinder, for example—what you will do to increase the lifespan of such equipment, as well as what other types

Pack It . . . . With acpo Tape!

Carton Sealing Tape from the Adhesive Film Specialist OAK HARBOR, OH—Leading self-wound polyester and polypropylene pressure sensitive adhesive (PSA) tape manufacturer, acpo ltd., introduces a new version on an old packaging favorite, carton sealing tape. The product features an industry proven acrylic adhesive which sticks instantly to corrugated and works best in the temperature range of 32°F to 120°F. This carton sealing tape is 1 mil polypropylene and .8 tenths mil emulsion acrylic for packaging performance. The product is offered in standard machine length rolls of 2” widths with 3,000’ roll lengths for efficient production. Inquiries regarding custom widths and longer roll

Waste Not, Wobble Not

Web handling is a broad category of products that can range from slitters/rewinders, web guides, register, tension controls, and web inspection. Web guiding and tension control are two factors that help converters control waste as well as the web’s “wobble” as it comes off the roll. In the case of tension control, sensor selection is a major factor. Using low-cost sensors that require constant recalibration is no longer acceptable to converters. Tension Control Issues Although some converters may be intimidated by the tension control concept, the waste reduction and improvement in product quality are more than worth the investment. “Tension control is perhaps

What’s Your Game Plan?

Anything in excess is never a good thing. Just like overdoing it by stuffing down that last bite of pie or filling your home with unnecessary material indulgences, printers can also overdo it with an excess amount of ink. Fortunately, this is where doctoring systems come in to save the day, and the printed material. But, like any piece of printing equipment, these systems are not problem-free. That is why converters need to be armed with the knowledge and skills necessary to make sure doctoring systems run properly and efficiently. Happy medium A doctoring blade can only do its job of wiping away excess