Converting Industry News

Covering the Full Spectrum of Industry News, Events & Activities

Show News
Corrugated Asia Includes Focus on Flexo

NEW YORK, NY, USA—Corrugated Asia 2001 will take place October 30 — November 1 at the Singapore Intl. Convention and Exhibition Ctr. in Suntec City. The show, expected to draw 2,500 attendees, will feature 150 exhibitors displaying the latest corrugated/flexo technology.

A two-day symposium will offer sessions on the global outlook; market opportunities; process development and quality control; and a “flexo on corrugated” focus.

For information, contact CMM Events, 1250 Broadway, Ste. 1903, New York, NY 10001; 212/268-4160;

Supplier News
DuPont Buys DFE's Longest Tension Roll

FLORENCE, SC, USA—DuPont Teijin Films has purchased a TR Tension Roll transducer with a 165-in. (419-cm) shaft length from Dover Flexo Electronics. It is the longest tension-sensing roll the company has ever sold.

The 6-in.-dia aluminum roll on the 400-lb transducer was finished with a knurled, hardcoat-anodized surface. The roll shaft, which runs axially through the entire length of the roller, reportedly gives the TR extremely high mechanical overload protection.
Supplier Information
Dover Flexo Electronics
, Rochester, NH; 603/332-6150;

Converter Enters New Markets with Gearless Press
AURORA, ON, CANADA—Progressive Packaging has purchased the first ten-color Fischer & Krecke gearless, servo-driven Flexpress 16 S CI flexo press sold in Canada. The sleeve-based 51-in.-wide press, which includes a downstream gravure station, will be used with both paper and flexible materials aimed for high-end retail markets.

According to Peter Mattiuzzo, VP/general mgr. of Progressive Packaging, “We wanted the infinite repeat lengths and the gravure quality promised by a gearless press. We were attracted by the intelligent simplicity of the engineering in the F&K press and liked the robust quality of the machine.”

The high quality graphics offered by the press allow the company to reach markets that were previously unavailable, Mattiuzzo adds, and the rapid changeover capabilities and minimal downtime will improve customer service by allowing Progress Packaging to accelerate order turnaround rates.
Supplier Information
Fischer & Krecke
, Fairfield, NJ; 973/882-9460

Galileo Uses Ei3 Technology for On-Line Support
MONTVALE, NJ, USA—Ei3 reports Galileo Vacuum Systems, Prato, Italy, will use technology developed by ei3 to deliver on-line engineering support and machinery performance analysis to customers worldwide.

The data network and e-service technology was developed by Ei3 to manage its own delivery of on-line professional services.

According to Galileo's managing director, Pietro Profumo, “The service is initially available to our North American customers only, but we will gradually introduce it on a worldwide basis over the next 12 months. Eventually, our senior process and controls engineers will use Ei3's networks and diagnostic software to support Galileo machinery on five continents.”

Reverse Airflow on Treater Provides Uniform Corona
Bachofen & Meier AG has installed a corona treater from Sherman Treaters Ltd. on its pilot line in Bülach, Switzerland. The system is designed to treat conductive and nonconductive films and foils at linear speeds to 1,000 mpm.

An R.A.F. (reverse airflow) system is said to provide filtered and conditioned air into the corona discharge, resulting in a more uniform corona and improved treat levels. The ozone is then extracted from the hood compartment surrounding six electrode assemblies. This system reportedly avoids contamination buildup in the electrode.

A clamshell opening provides more than 400-mm access around the base roll for web threading. Hinged access doors also provide access to the treater for electrode gap adjustment. The electrode assembly is removable and incorporates a calibrated gap adjustment feature that enables the operator to adjust the gap accurately across the width of the web. The assembly is designed to take up to 5 sq ceramic electrodes, minimizing the space required, thus allowing 30 sq ceramic electrodes, a nip roll, and an exit air-knife to be built around a 600-mm-dia roll. The base roll is also temperature controlled with the surface ceramic coated for treatment enhancement as well as providing mechanical durability.

The treater also features an air knife system that works in conjunction with a scrubber duct for boundary layer ozone extraction at the exit point of the station.
Supplier Information
Sherman Treaters Ltd., a div. of ITW
, Thame, Oxon, U.K.; +44 (0) 1844-213686;

Mamata Celebrates Milestone with B&J Parr
In January U.K.-based B&J Parr Flexible Printing Northeast Ltd. installed a bagmaking machine manufactured by Mamata Machinery. It was the 1,000th machine Mamata has delivered to a customer since the company's first bagmaker was installed in India in 1988.

Brian Parr of B&J Parr is pictured with the Vega 800 servo-driven universal bagmaker. Standard features include a microprocessor-based controller, user-friendly process parameter setting console, and pneumatically loaded dancer assemblies with feedback device for film unwind control. An attachment platform provides for quick changeovers and plug-in attachments.

Maximum speed for conventional sideweld bags is reported to be 180 cycles/min. Maximum speed for conventional bottom weld bags is 100 cycles/min.
Supplier Information
Mamata Machinery Pvt. Ltd.
, Ahmedabad, India; +91-79-5832023;

Huhtamaki Adopts Single Identity for US Operations
DESOTO, KS, USA—In an effort to align its global operations, Finland-based Huhtamaki had adopted the Huhtamaki name across all of its US packaging operations, including Sealright, Chinet, Packaging Resources, and Graphic Packaging.

Hosokawa Celebrates 500th Installation
NATICK, MA, USA—Hosokawa Alpine American has installed its 500th complete blown film extrusion system. The company reports total capacity of its installations exceeds 1.5 billion lb of film, approximately 10% of the total North American film market.

New Co. Offers Pollution Control Equipment
DEPERE, WI, USA—Charles M. Martinson has established a new company, The CMM Group, to provide custom-designed air pollution control systems and industrial web dryers.

Martinson, a former Wolverine and Megtec executive, will serve as president of The CMM Group, Box 5903, DePere, WI 54115; 920/336-9800.

Erhardt + Leimer to Sell AFS Treaters

SPARTANBURG, SC, USA—Erhardt + Leimer has an exclusive agreement with AFS Entwicklungs + Vertriebs GmbH, Neusaess, Germany, to market and sell AFS equipment in the US, Canada, and Mexico.

Erhardt + Leimer will sell and service the complete line of AFS microprocessor-controlled corona treaters and hot-needle and cold-needle perforators.

VPI to Market Honeywell Film Laminate
MORRIS TOWNSHIP, NJ, USA—Honeywell Engineered Applications and Solutions reports VPI Mirrex Corp. will market and sell Aclar laminate to the pharmaceutical and nutritional markets in the Americas.

Honeywell will continue to supply and service its current Aclar customers and converters.

Glenroy Rewarded for Flexo Printing Excellence

MENOMONEE FALLS, WI, USA—Glenroy Inc. reports it recently collected a number of awards for excellence in flexographic printing.

Two gold awards and one bronze award were given by the Flexographic Technical Association, and The Printing Industries of Wisconsin presented Glenroy with a Best of Category and a Certificate of Merit.

Association News
IADD Event Offers a Galaxy of Good Advice

The International Association of Diecutting and Diemaking (IADD) brought its own version of Stanley Kubrick's classic to the Nashville, TN, Convention Center May 1 — 3, with “2001: A Diecutting Odyssey.” The event featured more than 80 exhibitors as well as a number of seminars and vendor demonstrations.

The seminars were short (45 min), focused, and very practical. Topics included folding carton die-cutting; corrugated carton design for rotary dies; reducing set-up times in rotary die-cutting; the paperless die shop; a problem solving clinic; and whether converters should consider in-plant die-making.

Vendor demonstrations, also short and very practical, were held on the show floor in areas set up for this purpose. Attendees at these popular sesssions sat in bleachers, used headphones for clear audio, and were able to see the demonstration live on equipment or watch a video screen for close-ups. Among the subjects covered were automated rule processing and bending; automatic platen die-cutting; alternative to blanking; calculating tonnage using flat-bed die-cutting presses; and more. For information on future events, contact IADD at 815/455-7519; fax: 815/455-7510.

OMAC to Meet at Pack Expo
LAS VEGAS, NV, USA—The Open, Modular Architecture Controls (OMAC) Users Group will hold its fall OMAC Motion for Packaging Group meeting September 11 during Pack Expo at the Sands Hotel and Expo Center, Las Vegas. The subcommittees will announce initial position statements declaring open architecture requirements for motion control programming languages, communications networks, and machine states.

The meeting is open to OMAC members and all Pack Expo attendees.

Business Strategy
Looking at Coating Operation Options

GOLDEN, CO, USA—Graphic Packaging International Corp. has engaged The Wallach Co., a div. of McDonald Investments, to assess strategic options for its extruded coated paper business in Portland, OR.

President and CEO Jeffrey H. Coors says, “The North Portland operation generates strong margins and has many best practices that have been shared across our business units.”

Joint Ventures
Kapak, GIPSA Join to Produce Pouches

MINNEAPOLIS, MN, USA—Kapak Corp. and GIPSA, Guadalajara, Mexico, have formed a new company called GIPAK to produce pouches for the Latin American market. The technology exchange facilitated by the new venture will promote a variety of pouch structures, including standup, preformed, retort, and spouted pouches with fitments.

GIPAK will utilize GIPSA's 64,500-sq-ft facility in Guadalajara, where the company's capabilities include blowing PE, two three-layer coex lines, and five flexographic presses.

Prism and MicroInk Join Forces
WAREHAM, MA, USA—Prism Group and MicroInk have joined forces to provide integrated management systems for packaging manufacturers, printers, prepress providers, and other graphic arts businesses.

According to Chris Johnson, group managing director of London-based Prism, “The Prism WIN management information system and the Prism QTMS production monitoring system are the top end of the solution spectrum for printers. With the acquisition of MicroInk, Prism adds the Enterprise management suite to its product line, allowing us to address the needs of small to medium-sized graphic arts operations as well.”

Carol Anderson, former chairman and CEO of MicroInk, now heads the new North American div. as CEO of Prism USA.

Inland Opens Sheet Plant

INDIANAPOLIS, IN, USA—Inland Paperboard and Packaging has opened a new sheet plant in Littlestown, PA, to serve customers in central Pennsylvania and Maryland. The plant specializes in small-quantity orders and is equipped with a 35×85-in., two-color flexo/folder/gluer in a traditional sheet operation.

The company plans to expand the facility into a complete packaging and fulfillment operation; therefore, Inland's Gettysburg fulfillment center is moving to the Littlestown location.

Singapore Chemical Plant Opens
HOUSTON, TX, USA—ExxonMobil Chemical reports its $2 billion Singapore chemical plant on Jurong Island is now operating, supplying petrochemicals to the Asia Pacific region.

The centerpiece of the facility is an 800,000-ton/yr steam cracker, which produces ethylene, propylene, and other products for several downstream chemical plants in and around Singapore. The facility also features a 480,000-ton/yr PE plant, a 315,000-ton/yr PP plant, a 150,000-ton/yr oxo alcohol plant, and a 155-megawatt cogeneration unit that provides power to both the refinery and the chemical plant.

Sappi to Exit Uncoated Paper Business

BOSTON, MA, USA—Sappi Ltd. has finalized plans to leave the uncoated and converting paper business in the US and close its paper mill in Mobile, AL. The shutdown of the facility will enable Sappi Fine Paper North America to focus on its core business, coated fine paper.

Sappi will permanently shut down the three paper machines at the mill in phases over the next several months and then cease all operations at the mill, which manufacturers SprectraTech (a line of uncoated papers), converting grades, and Lusterprint (a high gloss paper used for pet food bags). Lusterprint will be produced at other Sappi facilities. The closure will be completed no later than mid-December.

Pillar, Sherman Now Part of Same Family

HARTLAND, WI, USA—Pillar Technologies, a div. of ITW, reports that with ITW's acquisition of Sherman Treaters (see PFFC, August 2001, p. 12), both Pillar and Sherman will continue to offer complete lines of corona treating equipment and operate within ITW as autonomous divisions.

Pillar will offer Sherman's line of flame treatment and ozone generation equipment. Engineering and manufacturing activities for the brands will continue to be performed by Pillar in Hartland and by Sherman in Thame, England.

Name Change
Southern Bag, Bonar Adopt Hood Identity

MADISON, MS, USA—Effective August 1, Southern Bag Corp. became Hood Packaging. According to Southern Bag president Rick Markell, “We want all of our various units to share a common identity and a common focus on customer satisfaction.”

Bonar Packaging, Burlington, ON, Canada, also is included under the Hood umbrella.

Customer Service
Smurfit-Stone Develops Customer-Focused Initiatives

WEST POINT, VA, USA—The Board Sales div. of Smurfit-Stone Container Corp. has developed new customer-focused initiatives that include on-site training for customers' employees and a product support lab.

A technical service team, consisting of a specialist in each area of corrugated, printing, prepress, platemaking, and inks, will assist customers that need guidance running a new grade, troubleshooting through a production snag, or increasing plant quality or profitability.

The product support lab allows team members to study product improvements, aid in the development of new products, and provide practical solutions to customers.

Industry Studies
Sterile Medical Packaging to Grow 5.4%

CLEVELAND, OH, USA—Sterile medical packaging demand in the US is projected to grow 5.4% yearly to $1.7 billion in 2005, according to “Sterile Packaging,” a new study from The Freedonia Group.

Pouch demand is expected to increase 5.7%/yr to more than $390 million in 2005; bags will exhibit average growth over the same period. The fastest growing market for sterile packaging will be medical supplies and devices, as disposables continue to gain market share over reusables. The study adds that packaging used in the pharmaceuticals and biologicals market will increase at below-average rates due to shorter hospital stays and diminished growth in the number of surgeries.

For information contact Freedonia Group, 767 Beta Dr., Cleveland, OH 44143; ph: 440/684-9600; This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Strong Growth Seen in European Nonwovens
BRUSSELS, BELGIUM—A Nonwovens Symposium, held June 7-8 in Copenhagen, Denmark, attracted more than 300 delegates from 190 companies and 21 countries. Organized by EDANA, papers covering the latest advances in nonwoven markets, raw materials, and manufacturing developments are available for €124.00.

EDANA reports production of nonwovens in Europe grew by a record 12.7% in 2000 to reach 1,025,900 tonnes, exceeding North America's growth of 4% and Japan's growth of 1.6%. The European nonwovens industry is valued at €4,100 million, employing 16,000 people in Western Europe, the association says.

For more information contact EDANA, 157 Avenue Eugène Plasky, Bte. 4, 1030 Brussels, Belgium; +32-2-734-9310; This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.;

Western Europe Flex-Pack Industry Struggling
BANBURY, UK—PCI Films Consulting Ltd. has completed its second study analyzing the €8 billion flexible packaging converting industry in Western Europe.

The study, “W. European Flexible Packaging Market 2000 — Converting Industry and End Use Markets,” reports a majority of flexible packaging converters are struggling to generate adequate return on their shareholder's investments due to a combination of upward price pressures from substrate suppliers and cost-cutting pressure from end-use customers.

Some converters are pursuing a strategy of increasing their mass to strengthen their position as buyer and seller, while smaller companies are adopting targeted niche market strategies.

For information contact PCI Films Consulting Ltd.; +44-1295-817670; This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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