by clicking the arrows at the side of the page, or by using the toolbar.
by clicking anywhere on the page.
by dragging the page around when zoomed in.
by clicking anywhere on the page when zoomed in.
web sites or send emails by clicking on hyperlinks.
Email this page to a friend
Search this issue
Index - jump to page or section
Archive - view past issues
FLEXO Magazine : July 2010
Technologies & Techniques Shrinking the Challenges of shrink sleeve Package Design By susie stitzel It’s no surprise to the readers of FLEXO Magazine that the use of thermo-shrinkable sleeves is becoming more popular. Just look around any supermarket, and you’ll see shrink labels on cans, bottles and jars—on products as varied as soft drinks and shampoo. Shrink labels are basically labels that are printed on plastic sheets or tubes and are shrunk around the contours of an object when exposed to hot air. There are two different types of shrink label: the shrink sleeve and the roll-fed, wrap-around shrink label. The global $3 billion shrink sleeve market continues to grow at a rate of about 7 percent a year. Because this application is still relatively new and requires some degree of expertise, it is controlled by a fairly small number of companies in each geographic area—not surprisingly, by medium to large com- panies. They have the resources to invest in the equipment, products and substrates, sometimes developing these for their own customized needs. Of course, brand owners favor shrink sleeve packaging for a number of reasons. It gives them a larger area of “real estate” for branding with more room for colors and images, along with design freedom. From a consumer safety perspec- tive, it immediately demonstrates any evidence of tampering. Transparent shrinkwrap labels can better display contents, while opaque labels can be used for special limited-period promotions, hiding the normal label. As such, there are some products that seem to lend themselves to shrink sleeves more than others. These include glass bottles, plastic containers, container labels that must be waterproof, unusually shaped containers and the binding of several containers together into a multi pack. The Challenge Unfortunately, with all the advantages of shrink sleeves come some challenges too. On a curved surface with a seam, • The new shrink sleeve technologies coming to market provide new design capabilities in the creative phase, and avoid errors and job rework caused by unexpect- ed material behavior in the production phase. • Design corrections are made a lot faster and rejects are avoided. Seamlessly fitting into existing design and prepress workflows, the tools save hours of operator time and weeks of lead-time in the design process. • The result is higher quality and consistency for shrink label production—expanding its use in the market- place. sophisticated software can now create the effect of distortion on a shrink sleeve. Pedigree is a registered trademark of Mars inc. and its affiliates. used with permission. All art courtesy eskoArtwork. 36 FLeXO july 2010 www.flexography.org FLXO_July10_v2.indd 36 7/16/10 9:36 AM
Sustainable Summer 2010