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FLEXO Magazine : August 2012
Forum Flashback—CPC & ECG Resetting Designs & Profiles Improves Results for Kaytee Know your best capability and be excellent every time you print. That is essentially what I tell members of the flexo community who aspire to improve and better support Kaytee’s branded packaging,” explains Kelly Owens, creative services director for this 145-year old consumer product company. “Don’t settle. If you aren’t proud of what you print, we probably won’t be happy.” Based in Chilton WI, Kaytee specializes in the manufacture and packaging of Avian wild bird food; as well as pet bird, small animal foods, treats and bedding. Owned by Central Garden and Pet, the CPC is a perennial winner in Flexo- graphic Technical Association’s annual Excellence in Flexog- raphy Awards competition, having captured best-in-show honors and gold-medal awards on numerous occasions. Owens, who has some two-decade’s worth of experience in the flexo industry and 16 years with Kaytee, is a familiar face in FTA circles. She frequently challenges printers to explore new capabilities that will add new dimensions to printed results. GENERATING APPEAL “Likes and dislikes evolve every year,” she says. “ T here are new trendy and favorite colors. It is important to inform, create excitement and generate appeal without adding confusion. ” To that, she adds, “In every market, there are colors that cue information to the consumer. Using expanded gamut printing, we can create a number of brand, variety, and signal colors and repeat them over our packaging line with no limits to how many we combine into each design.” “ECG printing’s prepress and printing costs compare favorably to more traditional four-color (CMYK) plus spot color printing,” Owens says in reiterating words she spoke at FTA’s 2012 Annual Forum in San Antonio, TX . Her remarks came in a panel discussion on shelf impact and ECG printing tools and techniques. Owens manages brand communication and packaging design on a daily basis. She reports, “Kaytee wants every packaging supplier to consider more environmentally friendly approaches to packaging. For ECG printing to be a part of that requires a complete buy-in to the process. We are only beginning to hear about those possibilities from our packag- ing partners.” Elaborating on the point, she says, “We are just introducing HD screening technology in combination with ECG with our current redesign. Most of our products have run at 133 line screen, but have moved to 150 line. ” MATCH & DELIVER “Printers who can match properly managed CMYK proofs can match ECG proofs just as well,” she continues, admitting, “ We see more limits to proofing gamut than we do to press gamut.” Furthermore, she adds, “The ability to match is part of our color development process. Original target colors might be difficult to match because of the pigments required. In the early proofing stages, we are seeing that color in our ECG ink set and a target is developed that can be matched in print. ” Owens maintains, “We try to adopt standards where we can, so that all of our printers can match each other. One of the difficulties a printer might have is if another customer, or separator, is asking for another special ink set. A common standard would help.” “Some printers are actually looking for an opportunity to try ECG printing. Some resist it for different reasons. We are getting better results each time we reset our designs and our printer profiles,” the package buyer acknowledges. In fact, she says, “We have some printers who are very successful on old presses, as long as they have enough print stations. ” Obviously, some printers can’t use, or resist using ECG We consistently prefer ECG, but understand constraints, too. Cost, investment in current methods, bad experience with the process, expense of not using it all the time; these are all valid considerations that sometimes dissuade converters from adopting ECG printing.” Still, Owens drives one, single and significant point home. “ We insist on a result and will not stay with a printer who does not deliver!” n Left to right: 2009 FTA Best of Show Kaytee Ultimate Finch Food Premium; 2010 Best of Show Kaytee Combo Bird Treats Wrapper; 2011 Silver Award Kaytee Wildlife Squirrel & Critter Blend Feed Bag 16 FLEXO AUgUST 2012 www.flexography.org Automated Print Control: the answer for short runs. MPS believes that today’s market needs automation of print settings in order to reduce the cost price per 1,000 labels, especially for short runs. MPS therefore introduces Automated Print Control. Automated Print Control means that all relevant mechanical adjustments are replaced by 100% accurate and maintenance-free servo motors. This will result in dramatic cost savings for both initial job settings as well as repeat jobs. Automated Print Control Automated Print Control stands for an automated servo control of all relevant press settings. These press settings are: • Pressure positioning servo drives for: » Plate to impression roller (left and right) » Anilox to plate (left and right) • Lateral and length register control Advantages The advantages of Automated Print Control offer a whole new world of press opportunities. 1. Automated loading of settings Thanks to Automated Print Control, press settings can be loaded completely automatically for: • Initial jobs: press settings can be loaded automatically out of the press’ calibration database. • Repeat jobs: press settings can be stored in the job memory. Meaning that with a repeat job, the different press settings can be loaded automatically. In this way, set up waste for both initial and repeat jobs are decreased dramatically. This makes Automated Print Control a real must for today’s printing presses. 2. Customized calibration Servo motors need to be set to a starting point. This is called the calibration point. Automated Print Control offers pressroom managers the unique possibility to calibrate the press themselves. It is now up to the pressroom manager to choose his or her calibration point, resulting in a perfect match to the desired working protocol. 3. Improved print quality With the Automated Print Control, the well known Crisp.Dot flexo printing quality of MPS presses has even been improved. With the extreme accurate servo positioning motors, press operators report a further increase of print quality at all print speeds. Ease of operation: iControl MPS does not allow technologies to compromise on ease of operation. This also counts for Automated Print Control. To be able to run very short order size jobs, an accurate and no-nonsense operator/machine interface is a must. The Automated Print Control’s operator/press interface contains user-friendly software and the no-nonsense MPS iControl hardware. iControl increases the ease of operation and enlarges the satisfaction of the press operator. Printers first. Technology with respect MPS’ philosophy “Technology with Respect” means that maximizing customer value always is the absolute focus of MPS when developing new technologies, not for example the number of servo motors. This philosophy was also the starting point for MPS when developing the Automated Print Control technology. The benefits of Automated Print Control, as listed above, show that this MPS technology really creates additional customer value. Automated Print Control is a real must for today’s printing presses. Technology with Respect. AdvErTOriAL MPS AMERICA LLC E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org www.mps4u.com “