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FLEXO Magazine : December 2012
Industry Indicators IDENTITY & IDEALOGY Flexography is packaging’s “Brand of Choice,” ac- cording to Flexographic Technical Association and its members. Tremendous pressure to improve from within exists. Successful packaging requires communications—up and down the supply chain. Great design is a given. Produc- tion, brand equity maintenance and cost containment are not. FTA’s action plan embraces a multi-part mantra. “Run your business by the numbers.” “ Print to the numbers”. “It’s all about statistical process control!” 1. Job counts are up. Pressruns are growing shorter. De- mands are becoming more complex. Emphasis on high quality at higher speeds has given rise to engineered solutions that capitalize on process integration from design to press. 2. Strategic objectives include: increasing productivity, reducing production risks, minimizing waste, shortening set-up times, streamlining operations and embracing and benefiting from technological innovation. 3. In the standards world, packaging is growing in signifi- cance and stature. ISO 12647-6:2012 Flexographic Print- ing—requires printers to print to customer’s expecta- tions, within agreed upon tolerances, by communicating those expectations with characterization data in PDFs. The present challenge is to bring the flexo printing standard to something that all can master and be able to use. 4. Flexographic Image Reproduction Specifications and Tolerances (FIRST) deliver on the promise to eliminate rework and “get it right the first time—every time.” Information exchanged helps shape the final solution. ” FIRST supports the methodical approach to process control, optimization, fingerprinting, characterization and process improvements as outlined in CGATS TR 012-2003 Graphic Technology—Color Reproduction and Process Control for Packaging Printing. Standardize & Simplify a 2012 retrospective compiled by steve Deering & robert Moran 44 FLEXO DeceMber 2012 www.flexography.org