Monthly Archives: April 2017

ROTOGRAVURE OR FLEXOGRAPHY?

Final

AIMCAL Marketing Excellence Award 2017 to Uflex for 3 Dimensional Slide to Close Zipper Bag with a Side Gusset Handle


Association of International Metallizers, Coaters & Laminators (AIMCAL) conferred the Marketing Excellence Award 2017 (in food category) to the 3 Dimensional Slide to Close (STC) Zipper Bag with a Side Gusset Handle that Uflex Limited manufactured for Samaa Basmati Rice.

The award ceremony was held on the sidelines of AIMCAL’s Annual Meeting at Orlando on 26 April as a part of International Converting Exposition (ICE) 2017.

The eminent Jury comprising a team of independent, nonaffiliated associates selected from diversified market areas particularly noted the superior aesthetics and functionalities of the packaging entry by Uflex that makes it stand out and rise above the clutter.

3 Dimensional Slide to Close Zipper Bag with a Side Gusset Handle for rice packaging has a premium matte finish. The pack is rotogravure reverse printed in High Definition with 8-10 colours using Toluene Free Poly Urethane Inks for a striking shelf appearance.

The shape of the pack has been designed for optimizing space utilization on the expensive retail shelf where every square inch counts. The side gusset comes fitted with a handle further spelling immense ease of carrying for the end-user.

5 distinct panels that comprise the entire pouch offer immense branding opportunities to the marketer on all sides. The transparent side gussets allow the end-users to see the product packed inside that further evokes immense consumer interest at the point of sale (POS) in terms of visual appeal so that they are able to make an informed choice. The side gusset handle in no way occults the branding and offers all round visibility to the package.

In an official statement issued soon after the award ceremony, Mr. Ashok Chaturvedi, Chairman and Managing Director, Uflex Limited said, “The real verdict about the packaging, particularly in the FMCG space always comes from the end-user. At Uflex our R&D team works in absolute tandem with the client to come up with packaging designs that evoke a ‘WOW’ at the point of sale (POS). An efficient packaging design enhances the overall consumer experience in turn adding value to the business of our clients globally. This is truly gratifying. I am humbled by this conferral by AIMCAL.”

Flex Films to set the trend for the Art and Science of Converting at INTERPACK 2017

Flex Films to set the trend for the Art and Science of Converting at INTERPACK 2017

Noida (India)/ Elizabethtown, Kentucky (USA), 18 April 2017: Come 4th of May and all roads shall lead to Dusseldorf to witness one of the most awaited exhibitions of the year — INTERPACK 2017. Flex Films- the global film manufacturing arm of India’s largest multinational flexible packaging materials and Solution Company Uflex is all geared for a trendsetting stint at the event that will shape the contours of the Art and Science of Converting. Flex Films will be exhibiting its myriad innovations in the field of film manufacturing that is expected to evoke a lot of interest among the global converting fraternity.

Flex Films’ pavilion (Hall No. 10; Stand No. D-44) at the mega event will have six distinct zones showcasing various films / substrates and value added products that have created ripples in the arena of converting. These Six Zones are Sustainability; Speciality; Lidding; Barrier; PP (OPP & CPP) Family; and Aesthetics & Anti-counterfeiting.

Here’s a quick run-down on the products one can see from the house of Flex Films at Interpack 2017:

Sustainability:Being the cornerstone of its business strategy, Sustainability holds a special place in all business operations of Flex Films. Strong emphasis is laid on fostering down-gauging, light-weighting, reduction at source and design optimization in all its creations. Some of the major highlights of this zone will be Recycled Polyester Film; Oxo and Bio Degradable Films and Green Polyester Film (Green PET) among others. In Green PET Film conventional Mono Ethylene Glycol (MEG) that is made from non-renewable petro-based feedstock is totally replaced by green MEG derived from bio-ethanol made from renewable agro inputs. This film has been internationally honored for its sustainability quotient.

Speciality: In this section the visitors will be able to see latest innovations like Twist (TST); Shrink (SPH); Easy Stackable (ESB); Digital Printing (PDP); U.V. Curable (UVC) ; Electronic Goods Wrapping (MTG-AS-B/M) Film; Special Polyester Film for Alu-Alu pharma laminate; and Easy Tear (IET) Films. While Twist (TST) Film exhibits high mechanical properties and excellent twist retention, Easy Stackable (ESB) Film is specially modified on one side to prevent slippage during storage and palletization. The U.V. Curable (UVC) film is suitable for direct UV offset printing without requiring any primer/ treatment. Digital Printing (PDP) Polyester Film is HP Indigo certified substrate suitable for direct printing without requiring any priming or coating. Electronic Goods (MTG-AS-B/M) Film is metallized on one side and primed with a special material on the other for controlling static charges thereby making it suitable to run on high speed converting machines and wrapping electronic goods.

One of the much sought aftersubstrates that will be on display at Interpack this time around is a special polyester film that has successfully replaced BOPA and PVC substrates from a typical Alu-Alu laminate used in pharma packaging thereby serving as a game changer.Flex Films shall also exhibit Easy Tear (IET) Polyester film that is used for pharma strip packaging by laminating with down-gauged Aluminium Foil.

Lidding: Opening lids of disposable glasses, cups and platter meals can pose a serious challenge particularly for the ever increasing aging population. To address this, Flex Films has engineered suitable substrates that pave way for smooth and easy lid-opening. In the lidding section at Interpackthe company will be displaying Isotropic (IST) and Peelable (TPA) Films among several others. Isotropic (IST) Films are polyester substrates having balanced properties that ensure that the film does not tear abruptly. Peelable Polyester Films are heat sealable lacquered on one side.This film offers high level of convenience in lid opening and serves as a ready to use lidding solution for the convertors. Dairy Packaging Film (DPA) –also from the polyester family exhibiting excellent machinability and dimensional stability will be seen at Flex Films’ stand.

Barrier: One of the most important purposes that laminates comprising different substratesserve is to provide optimum barrier properties to protect the product from being spoiled through its recommended shelf life. Flex Films has made substantive headway in engineering high barrier substrates. Some of these that can be seen at Interpack this time around are AlOx (PLX & PGX); Bag in Box (LBP-M); High Barrier MET PET (EBP – M) and Super Barrier Corona (PGB) Films among several others.

Notably AlOx(PGX) Polyester Film is the thinnest PET AlOx film available globally. Despite being the leanest, the 9.5 micron AlOx polyester film exhibits excellent barrier for oxygen and water vapour as W.V.T.R (gm/m2/day) and O.T.R (cc/m2/day) are both < 1.0. No player other than Flex Films offers such a thin PET AlOx speciality film with such superior barrier properties.

Super Barrier Polyester (PGB) Polyester Film with specially modified surface treatment (on one side) offers very high barrier to oxygen. The other side of the film can be corona treated or left untreated as per the requirements of the convertor. The Oxygen Transmission Rate (O.T.R) of this film is < 6 cm3/m2/day at 23 degrees Celsius & 0% RH. A big advantage of this film is the fact that it does not require any coating or co-extrusion of Polyvinylidene Chloride (PVDC) or Ethylene Vinyl alcohol (EVOH) for enhancing barrier properties.

Bag in Box (LBP-M) is a Metallized Polyester Film with high oxygen barrier <0.8 cm3/m2/day at 23 degrees Celsius & 0% RH with both surfaces exhibiting exemplarily high lamination bond strength with PE.

PP (OPP & CPP) Family: Flex Films also manufactures different variants of Oriented Polypropylene and Cast Polypropylene Films. Some of these films that will be on display at Interpack are: Ultra Barrier OPP (TUB-M); Low SIT (TLS); Anti-fog OPP (TAF); Retortable CPP (CPR); Deep Freeze CPP (CDF) and High Barrier CPP (C-CXB-PZ-M) Films.

Ultra-Barrier OPP (TUB-M) is a Metallized BOPP Film that is heat-sealable and demonstrates superior barrier and broad seal performance. This film finds use in manufacturing flexible packaging material for biscuits and cookies. Low SIT (TLS) is a transparent BOPP Film with one side treated and the other side having low seal initiation (SIT) temperature. It offers excellent hot tack strength and high seal integrity.

Anti-fog OPP (TAF) is a transparent film where both the sides are treated and sealable. As the name suggests, one side of the film exhibits anti-fog properties.This film finds wide application in making packaging material for fresh food, vegetables and meat. The film ensures that the droplets of water are not coalesced on the interior of the pack. This prevents the transparent pack from being fogged out.The root cause of water droplet formation is the difference in surface tension between the film and the water. The anti-fog film is made from of polar (hydrophilic) polymer with a surface energy higher than that of water. This results in droplets forming lower contact angles with the film. These droplets tend to accumulate and form a very thin transparent film of water, reducing or even eliminating the fogging effect.

High Barrier (C-CXB-PZ-M) is a metallized CPP film with metal deposition on the corona treated surface, while the other side being sealable. This film demonstrates a broad hot tack window, excellent barrier properties and low seal initiation temperature. The film finds extensive use in manufacturing packaging material for snacks and biscuits.

Aesthetics and Anti-counterfeiting: The day and age we live in, threat of counterfeiting to the brands is more dreaded than ever. Also on display at Flex Films’ stand will be Holographic and Fresnel Lens Embossed Films among other brand protection solutions. Fresnel Lens Embossed Film in particular is being manufactured at Flex Films Europa (Poland) in alliance with WaveFront Technology Inc. with direct assistance and support of Uflex Limited’s Holography business back in India. Aesthetics play an undeniably important role in packaging, drawing attention of the customers at the point of sale (POS). Besides combating counterfeiting these films also add to the aesthetic quotient of the packaging. Other pigmented special effect films from the polyester and polypropylene families in high gloss and matte variants will also be seen at Flex Films’ stall at Interpack 2017.

Talking about Flex Films’ wide array of products that will be on display at Interpack 2017, Mr. Anantshree Chaturvedi, Vice Chairman & CEO, Flex Films International said, “In converting, everything starts with a film or substrate. Science comes alive when different substrates are carefully engineered and treated to impart desired properties in the ensuing laminate that eventually forms the packaging for a particular product. The skill and finesse that further goes into the process of converting these substrates into laminates is an Art. It is this perfect interplay of Art and Science that brings in the much required innovation to create value added differentiation in the field of converting/packaging. I am glad that our innovative films have been adding incrementally progressive value to the businesses of convertors and brandsalike across the globe.Interpack is a great platform for meeting the convertors and brands and taking them through our large and innovative assortment of films and substrates.”

Praising Messe Dusseldorf’s initiative of congregating all stakeholders of the converting and packaging industry under one roof, Mr. Ashok Chaturvedi, Chairman and Managing Director, Uflex Limited (Parent Company of Flex Films) said, “The collective wealth of experience in terms of product innovation for the converting/packaging industry that will be on display at Interpack 2017 is truly praiseworthy. I am glad that Flex Films will be showcasing its most contemporary and innovative products for the global converting industry. After-all the Art of Converting starts with the Science of manufacturing the Film!”

Visit Flex Films at Interpack 2017 in Hall No. 10; Stand No. D-44 from 04 to 10 May 2017

Uflex honoured as Asia’s Most Trusted Flexible Packaging Solution Company

s Most Trusted Flexible Packaging Solution CompanyIndia’s largest multinational flexible packaging materials and Solution Company Uflex Limited has started the new financial year on a winning note. The company has been acknowledged as Asia’s Most Trusted Flexible Packaging Solution Company by International Brand Consulting Corporation, USA.

Pursuant to a comprehensive cross industry research (conducted by Media Research Group (MRG)) of brands that have served as prime movers towards the growth and success of Asian Economy, Uflex has been conferred with the award along with prominent names like CK Birla Group HIL Limited; SBI Mutual Fund; Hitachi Consulting; Blue Dart; Aaj Tak; Yash Raj Films; Bestseller; Narayan Seva Sansthan; The SIAM Commercial Bank; 93.5 Red FM; Reliance Jio and Taj Hotels among several others. The award ceremony that took place in Bangkok on Sunday evening witnessed over 100 delegates including CEOs, COOs, Managing Directors, Presidents and International Media Personnel congregating under one roof to raise a toast for the Asian Success Story.

Various parameters on which the winners were assessed and judged are Product Innovation; Customer Satisfaction; Market Reach; Growth in the last 5 years; Sectoral Leadership and Strong Media Presence.

In an official statement issued after the award ceremony, Mr. Ashok Chaturvedi, Chairman & Managing Director, Uflex Limited said, “Bespoke innovation to create value added differentiation invariably leads to customer satisfaction. Innovation is the guiding vector of our business strategy, and I assure our clients across the globe of many more path breaking innovations in flexible packaging through-out the year and beyond.”

Rotogravure or Flexography?

Rotogravure-Printing-Principle
Picking sides in this case won’t be easy and straightforward!!!

Both Flexographic and Rotogravure printing technologies are well established in their own stature and have their fair shares of advantages and disadvantages.

Let’s try and understand the principle of Rotogravure and Flexographic printing technology!

Gravure printing is a type of intaglio printing process; i.e., it involves engraving the image onto an image carrier. In rotogravure printing the image is acid-etched on the surface of a metal cylinder—one cylinder for each color—in a pattern of cells. The cells are recessed into the cylinder, unlike relief printing or letterpress where the printing image is raised, or like offset printing, in which the image is level with the plate. The cylinder is etched with cells of different depths. These cells hold the ink that is transferred to the substrate. The dimensions of the cells must be precise because the deeper cells produce more intensive color than shallow cells.
The cells are filled with ink, and the non-printing portions of the plate or cylinder are wiped or scraped free of ink through the doctor blade. Then paper or another substrate is pressed against the inked cylinder on a rotary press, and the image is transferred directly to the medium, unlike in offset printing, which uses an interim cylinder. The engraved cylinder sits partially immersed in the ink fountain, where it picks up ink to fill its recessed cells on each rotation of the press.

Flexographic printing uses a plate with a raised surface (relief printing) and fast drying fluid inks to print directly onto the print material. The plates are made of rubber or photosensitive polymeric material called photopolymer and are attached to a drum on rotary printing equipment. Flexography prints from a flexible printing plate that is wrapped around a rotating cylinder. The plate is usually attached to the cylinder with double-sided sticky tape.

Rotogravure-Printing-Principle

For a convertor to choose between rotogravure and flexographic printing process several parameters like quality of print; cost efficiency w.r.t. short/ long run; cylinder/ plate costs; maintenance costs among several others.

Rotogravure technology produces exceptionally high quality results rapidly while flexographic process poses sporadic print quality limitations in terms of insufficient uniformity of print production. Flexographic printing scores an edge for short-run jobs whereas rotogravure is preferred for longer runs. Printing-press cost works out to be considerably higher in rotogravure printing as compared to flexographic printing. Although the operating costs (utilities and overhead) are slightly higher in rotogravure when compared to flexographic printing. Rotogravure printing does not support as much versatility in printing mediums as flexographic. Due to plate elasticity and tolerances reproducibility is somewhat dependent on pre-press conditions and operator’s skill in the case of flexographic printing, while rotogravure printing ensures excellent reproducibility that remains independent of the skillset of the operator.
Much of Americas is using flexographic printing while rotogravure technology is also picking up of late. In Europe the trend and predilection is again tilted towards flexographic printing although rotogravure printing is not far behind. In the entire Asia Pacific Rotogravure technology calls the shots.

As stated in the beginning of this blog, the choice of printing technology to be deployed rests upon the priorities of the convertor therefore neither does rotogravure win nor does flexography lose. Given the popularity of both technologies in varied circumstances, India’s largest fully integrated multinational flexible packaging materials and Solution Company Uflex manufactures both Rotogravure and Flexographic presses. Earlier last year, Uflex shook hands with Italian Firm Comiflex SRL to manufacture gearless C.I. Flexo Printing Machines under a Technology Transfer Agreement. The Engineering Business is in the process of completing its first 1.3 meter web, 8 color, central drum CI Flexo Printing Machine here in Noida designed to operate at a speed of 400 meters per minute. The first machine will be installed at the Converting Business of Uflex and once it is tested for various performance parameters, other bespoke machines will be manufactured for domestic and export markets.