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FLEXO Magazine : September 2012
technological print- ing. We standardize everywhere we can. FLEXO: What color management and control applications/ procedures do you employ in an effort to maintain design and brand color integrity? ZIEGLER: We mea- sure all of our output with X-Rite spectrodensitometers. We utilize a variety of plat- forms for color management. Monaco Profiler, Profiler Maker Pro, and Color Port are the most common for us. We also use Isis for IT8 charts and Colorproof xf for our contract proofing. FLEXO: Do LEAN manufacturing principles (cost-effective manufacturing) have a place in your plant? Why/why not? ZIEGLER: LEAN manufacturing and lean supply chains with our suppliers and customers have strengthened our business. FLEXO: Have you moved, or do you intend to move to a completely automated workflow? How will that enhance your firm’s competitive position? ZIEGLER: We have somewhat automated workflows. Our Xeikon 3300 is furthest along. Most of our products are unique and we are in a make-to-order environment. JDF (job docu- ment files) workflows currently show the most promise com- bined with state-of-the-art ERP (enterprise resource planning) systems. FLEXO: What other steps are you taking to maintain a path toward continuous improvement in your plant? ZIEGLER: We place emphasis on training/cross-training, stay on the bleeding edge of technologies that can improve our business and apply LEAN principles, such as Kaizen events, and LEAN/Six Sigma projects. FLEXO: Have you attained FIRST (Flexographic Image Re- production Specifications and Tolerances), ISO (International Standards Organization), ANSI (American National Safety Institute), or environmentally related certifications? Do you expect to in the future? ZIEGLER: Right now, both of our plants are ISO 9001:2008. FLEXO: How do you assess and enhance the skills of your pressroom personnel? ZIEGLER: We believe in cross-training and assess proficiency through audits and metrics. We also have sent personnel to vendor training and often bring vendors in for ongoing training. FLEXO: Can you provide a brief statement on how sustain- ability/green printing, combination.multi-process printing, smaller size packages and migration to flexible formats, and Expanded Color Gamut Printing are impacting your plant? What likely effects will they have on operations in the years to come? ZIEGLER: Sustainability, or green printing, means we’ll con- tinue to see thinner caliper face sheets and liners. Also, there will be a continued trend away from solvents and a larger focus on waste reduction. At Tapecon, we are already involved in combination/multi- process printing. There are many analog/digital hybrid appli- cations. We also see situations where we may run something flexo and then screen; then print a specialty, such as scratch- off ink or glow in the dark. Smaller sized packages and SKU proliferation challenge analog technologies. That’s why we invested in the Xeikon 3300. We currently have no intention of entering the flexible packaging space. We produce expanded color gamut printing on our Xeikon 3300. We haven’t had a need to do so in analog format. FLEXO: Can you please explain the value of FTA mem- bership to your firm and comment on the most significant takeaways from the association’s recent meetings, training programs or printed educational materials? ZIEGLER: FTA is crucial in the areas of education and tech- nology advancement. FLEXO: Finally, if you have capital improvement plans under development/implementation, what are they and how will they change the face of your business as we move into the future? ZIEGLER: At Tapecon, we are continuously investing in tech- nology, our plant and our people. Our focus is specificity. n Roll stock in finished form at Tapecon. 54 FLEXO sepTembeR 2012 www.flexography.org