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FLEXO Magazine : March 2008
INDUSTRY INDICATORS PRESSING ISSUES 12 FLEXO MARCH 2008 www.flexography.org Repackaged Kisses Executives at The Hershey Co. vow that changes will be made---not necessarily to the prod- uct, but to the packaging and merchandising of its fa- mous Kisses. It's not just Kisses that could change. Hershey President and CEO David J. West said Hershey Miniatures and Nuggets also need addressing. The packaging of the three product lines has changed little over the years, West noted during a Jan. 24 conference call when Hershey discussed its fourth- quarter results. But consumers have changed a lot. By the end of 2007, the Hershey Kiss showed signs of exhaustion. Consumer purchases were down more than 7 percent in the fourth quarter, compared with the prior year. For all of 2007, Kiss purchases dropped 3.6 percent. The dip in sales comes despite a host of new flavored Kisses in recent years. West explained that there is a need to "contemporize" the candies with mer- chandising and packaging improvements "to meet current and unmet needs" of consumers. But he wouldn't say what Hershey plans to do. He insisted more information will be revealed later in the year. In the past decade, the traditional Kiss has branched out beyond milk chocolate and almonds. Now there are peanut but- ter Kisses, caramel Kisses, cherry cordial Kisses, special dark Kisses and chocolate truffle Kisses. Even limited-edition, New York Cheesecake-flavored creme Kisses. For last year's 100th birthday celebra- tion, Hershey customized Kisses for retailers. DuPont Increases Prices A cost increase between 3 percent and 8 percent has taken effect on vari- ous Cyrel products offered by DuPont Packaging Graphics throughout the U.S. and Canada. "We have avoided taking this action for a long time," stated Bob Zoelle, North American business direc- tor for DuPont. "Over the past five years, DuPont has aggressively pursued manu- facturing productivity improvements and cost reductions in an attempt to offset the sustained increases in the cost of pe- troleum-based raw materials and energy." Zoelle pointed out that this is the first time there has been a price increase on Cyrel FAST, and went on to insist that DuPont will continue its focus to innova- tion in flexography. A&V to Distribute for Polywest Polywest Sleeve Systems has appointed Anderson & Vreeland as distributor of its products in the U.S. A&V will sell Polywest sleeves and provide technical support utilizing its staff of technical sales representatives and nationwide dis- tribution network. Phoenix Challenge Seeks Sponsors Please consider joining your fellow flexographers and industry leaders who share a common goal to invest in youth as a critical building block toward the best possible workforce for the future of flexo by becoming a Phoenix Challenge Competition sponsor. Through your fi- nancial support the 11th annual Phoenix Challenge Foundation High School Flexo Student Skills competition, and result- ing 2008 scholarship awards, will inspire more talented students than ever to pursue further education and a career in flexography. Funding is needed for travel, hotel, meals, materials, awards, scholarships and more for a record of nearly 100 flexo students and teachers in 2008. To achieve this goal, four sponsor levels are avail- able as well as new Special Sponsorships, which fund specific needs. For more information, contact Bettylyn Krafft, chairman of the Phoenix Challenge Foundation, at 704-309-3748 or firstname.lastname@example.org. drupa 2008: DuPont & EskoArtwork Showcase Flexo At drupa 2004, many printing industry specialists agreed that flexography would match or exceed other printing tech- nologies as a leading packaging printing process by 2008. As such, visitors to this year's event will be looking for state-of- the-art and quality achievements in flexo printing. The market economy and its current conditions force users to make wise in- vestment with partners that, in spite of future uncertainties and ever increasing challenges of the packaging printing industry, have demonstrated, year after year, the ability to provide solutions that add value to their business and contrib- ute effectively to their growth. Moreover, flexo users will also seek technology solutions that will allow their businesses to be competitive, profitable and sustain- able by being environmentally smart and compliant with local ecology laws. DuPont Packaging Graphics and EskoArtwork have focused their attention to all these needs and the developments that will be presented at the show will reconfirm the value of their close techni- cal cooperation. The new Flexo Vertical Solutions will include products and services tailor-made for all of the differ- ent segments and applications---tag and label, flexible packaging, corrugated, etc. A modular approach addresses different customer needs, both in terms of size tradeshops and printers.