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FLEXO Magazine : April 2012
Optimization, according to Mazur, requires measurements and controls. Everything from line art to highlight dots and registration related matters needs to be addressed. The session, “FOG’D 2012: Reality Flexo,” showcased consumer product company demands, applied them to actual commercial print production runs, laid results side-by-side and compared what is achieved on a flexographic press to the output on offset, gravure and digital machines. Eyes were opened. Observations are still pouring in. The consensus among FTA members was, of course, “Flexo is packaging’s brand of choice!” John Paine, C -P Flexible Packaging, commented, “Good choice of technologies to cover. We are being challenged by CPCs trying to differentiate their product. ” Tim Rose, Schawk, described FOG’D in these terms, “Fast paced, good variety, comprehensive.” Sheryl Cunningham, DuPont, noted, “FOG’D was one of the best sessions I’ve attended. Seeing competi- tive samples was a great approach.” Similarly, Dan Heller, 360 Imaging, labeled the briefing an, “important session,” then added, “I hope print buyers heard the message,” Krueger chimed in, “Every word was educa- tional. I enjoyed the hands-on approach. It is nice to compare samples and see their differences. ” TRENDS & TECHNOLOGIES Offering their views on emerging trends and new technolo- gies, Scott Schultz, Eckart America Corp., discussed the evolution of metallic and special effect pigments; Colleen Larkin-Twomey, California Polytechnic State University, delved into engaging consumers with electronic-enabled packaging (see page 32); Mario Mucciacciaro, Uteco North America, Inc. , explained reaching new efficiencies with on-press tech- nologies; and John Thome, BST Pro Mark, detailed the new frontier for press productivity. Schultz explained that it is clear that brands will continue to seek unique effects that stand out on the store shelves. “Emerging trends in metallic pigment give us choices that were not available in previous years,” he said. “Premium ef- fects, economic savings and potential for reducing the overall environmental impact make metallic ink a valuable choice in decoration.” Larkin-Twomey shed light on the hottest consumer trends in electronics-enabled packaging: QR codes, snap tags, Near Field Communication (NFC) and augmented reality. “ Elec- tronic enabled packaging enables CPCs to interact with, and gain consumer data with mobile devices,” she maintained. “T he ability to reproduce image fidelity consistently continues to be paramount in flexo.” Mucciacciaro discussed new efficiencies with on-press technologies including color matching, registration setting, and automatic impression setting. “ The best return on your investment is possible by reducing waste, decreasing produc- tion cost and increasing productivity,” he emphasized. Thome elucidated that print inspection is the new fron- tier for press productivity. “ Dramatic changes in inspection technology are driving improvements in machine productiv- ity,” he observed. “Consumer satisfaction is now driven by inspection technology. ” 18 FLEXO april 2012 www.flexography.org