Digital Magazine

Packaging That Takes You Away

A tropically verdant landscape, a hidden treasure, a sun-catching… cookie package? A day at the beach? Nope, not even a vacation memory — but memorable nonetheless.

These noteworthy elements were among the innovations employed by GAA's “Best of the Best” winners. From a tropical-paradise scene on a coffee package to a game piece printed and embedded into the packaging itself, the winners of the Gravure Assn. of America's 16th annual competition revealed the eye-catching power of gravure.

Awards were presented at GAA's annual convention held in May in Ponte Vedra, FL; judging took place in late February in Rochester, NY. Winners were selected from among 120 entries in 22 categories. Five judges reviewed this year's entries, including Tom Gault, Quebecor World; Carol Durgan, Sun Chemical; Paul Sharkey, FLXon Inc.; Elaine Lippe, Packaging Corp. of America; and Eric Bell, Bobst Group.

Judges' pick for overall “Best of the Best” went to two commercial gravure applications printed by Reclamebureau van Heertum B.V. & Gestel Printing Co. B.V. for entries: Tobacco Journal Intl. cover (agency/advertising design/publication) and Brochure Gestel Printing Co. B.V. (a brochure wrapped in a box displaying a Cartier cigarette carton, product/design concept).

Following are a few of the converting industry award winners. For more information, contact the Gravure Assn. of America, 1200-A Scottsville Rd., Rochester, NY 14624; 585/436-2150; gaa.org.

Packaging Paper
Printpack Inc. took a Golden Cylinder for its Nabisco ET Chips Ahoy cookie package. Through printing on metallized paper, the entry achieved maximum package esthetics and replaced more expensive metallized inks systems; GAA says it demonstrates gravure's versatility to achieve market objectives.

Packaging Film
RJR Packaging won for its Maui Kannapali Coffee package. (see first picture) “Think of Hawaii, and the images that come to mind are lush green landscapes, exotic flowers, and beautiful blue ocean. One look at [this] and you can see that pure tropical paradise,” says GAA. Mixing duotones with four-color process, vignetted tones, and backprint copy, this package utilized a full press load of nine colors, two backprints, and an adhesive. The company reports hours of testing on a proof press to achieve desired effect, which paid off when judges praised the “flawless reproduction with extraordinary detail”; image quality combined with color choice made this exotic entry a winner, adds GAA.

Packaging Paperboard
RJR Packaging garnered another Golden Cylinder for its Winston (S2) cigarette packaging family. “The introduction of Winston's new S2 line extension prompted an enhancement [to the package],” says GAA. Employing embossed silver with black with a combination of matte and gloss finishes, it “advances the use of flexible packaging, giving the impression of chrome and steel in a traditionally printed and packaged board- stock,” reports GAA. “This entry provides a great example of sharp, crisp gravure printing combined with total process control.…”

Packaging Technical Innovation
Seville Flexpack Corp. reaped the rewards of the patented Hide-a-Winner® process utilized in Sun-Maid Raisins Toons-and-Treat Promo. The product's packaging features a game piece incorporated into the packaging material; thus a game piece did not have to be dropped into every package, slowing down productivity. The piece is hidden; to reveal the prize the consumer cuts along the dotted line and peels the film layers apart. This application required a combination of technologies, including registered adhesive, view-block cylinders, and multiple film laminations — all done in-line — which has the adhesive removed behind the game piece. “Proof of the success of this award-winning technology is the fact this is the fifth year for this promotion, and each year the volume has grown, thanks to the rotogravure process and Hide-a-Winner technology,” GAA says.

Product Production (porous substrate)
Packaging Corp. of America utilized gravure for this difficult-to-print application — packaging for the Toro 3340-509 Ultra Blower. “The goal was to keep the customer in the high end of the graphic packaging arena and still find ways for cost reduction,” explains GAA. The substrate's basis weight was lowered, and engraving specs were adapted to accommodate a more porous substrate; gravure printing maintained the minimum print dot and “great” tone reproduction for the graphic image.

Supplier Innovation/Press
Bobst Group Inc. and Schiavi spa won for the SG-2000 rotogravure press. Press features include integrated on-press automatic wash-up system (includes wash-up of ink pan, ink pump, printing cylinder, ink hoses, and doctor blade); optional use of printing cylinder sleeves with on-press sleeve change; enclosed inking group to eliminate ink splashes (system requires only 1.5 gal of ink to be operational); fully motorized doctor blade assembly that automatically sets blade angle; electronic line shaft press drive; register control system for length- and side-print register (developed specifically for this press in conjunction with Bobst Registron); press dryers designed for efficiency and accessibility; and suitability for long-, medium-, and short-run production.

Supplier Innovation/Inks and Substrates
Packaging Corp. of America, working with inks supplied by Sun Chemical, picked up a Golden Cylinder for its lifetime portable basketball systems packaging. Printing 55×57-in. photographic images on coated kraft with metallic inks — now that's a challenge. This packaging involved an “extremely large format” image, but says GAA, “gravure's capabilities were able to handle this.” Adds the association, “Special inks — heat-resistant to 400 deg F, manufactured without resins, and able to trap and print the quality required for the photographic images — were developed with Sun Chemical.” GAA adds inks were able to handle downstream process variables of 800 fpm and face-down paper delivery to 400-deg F corrugator hotplates.

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