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FLEXO Magazine : July 2008
PLANTS & PROCESSES Exterior view, Eastern Packaging plant, Lawrence, MA. Precision Control Eastern Packaging Embraces Linear Technology E rik Curtis' customers look at Eastern Packaging's year-old press, listen to him describe how innova- tive it is; then walk away quite intrigued, somewhat mesmerized, and at times, ever so slightly intimidated. To a person, they all like the efficiencies that it brings to their business. Bag in hand-printed that is, they profess: "Colors are sharper." "Laydown is better." "Lead times are shorter." "Speed is unbelievable and betters past performance three to five times over!" Curtis proclaims. As company president, he credits linear motor technology, some- thing that attracted him to the press im- mediately, then motivated him to place the very first order for such a machine-a 10-color CI flexo model-with helping to strengthen Eastern's reputation and ex- pand its reach. - J U L Y 2008 FLEXO By Robert Moran Long thought of as a plastic bag and plastic wrap supplier to those in the greater Boston area, Lawrence, MA-based Eastern Packaging's orders now flow in from up and down the entire East Coast. This FTA-member firm has a 50+ year his- tory of seizing on an idea, running with it, introducing it to the business, evolving operations accordingly, and benefiting both its customers and its bottom line. That tradition was born in the 1950s, when the company incorporated and made cellophane cigar wrappers. First- generation management-Erik's grandfa- ther , Henry James Curtis-orchestrated the initial expansion of the business via purchase of several pieces of extrusion equipment, which launched the company into the plastic bag business. www.flexography.org FLEXO TAKES HOLD Henry, who headed the firm into the 1980s, actually brought in its first presses and a flexographic print shop was born. It was Erik's Dad, Jim Curtis, however, who in the 1990s, brought in two Maf presses and expanded the print business consider- ably. Early on, Erik says, "We excelled in the printing area and we did a lot with cough drops at the time. Eventually, we headed into the bakery business and started doing a good volume of work. To this day, that's a segment that we are gear- ing our sales to and it's how we're growing the business." "We've been printing since the 1960s," Erik states proudly. "The Cape Cod Potato Chip bag was designed by one of our old general managers. It is 100 percent flexo." In fact, all printed work coming out of
Flexo Sustainable Fall 2008