Copac Prints High Quality Cartons with HP Indigo

PALO ALTO, CA | Copac Global Packaging, Spartanburg, SC, has added a new HP Indigo WS6600 Digital Press. The company had already been operating a fleet of offset, flexographic, letterpress, and HP Indigo digital presses to produce eye-catching and functional labels and carton packaging. But the HP Indigo WS6600 Digital Press added a whole new range of capabilities to the mix. “If you want to offer the best solution, you’ve got to have the technology to deliver it,” said Tom McRae, VP of sales and marketing at Copac.

By using the speed and quality of the new HP Indigo WS6600 Digital Press as a complement to its conventional printing systems, Copac can produce offset-quality strategic/short runs to offer its customers innovative label and folding carton solutions.

Fresh beer, fresh cartons

One of Copac’s regular label and folding carton clients is The Olde Mecklenburg Brewery (OMB), a North Carolina-based microbrewery modeled after German-style neighborhood brewpubs. OMB has positioned itself as a fresh beer brewer, which means that every part of the operation, from bottling to packaging and shipment, is time sensitive.

So when OMB needed labels for its seasonal Yule Bock and folding cartons for a specialty holiday three-pack, Copac had to work quickly. Powered by its HP Indigo WS6600 Digital Press, Copac delivered a few hundred cartons on both SBS board and premium silver foil board. From concept to delivery, the job took about a week.

With full color printing speeds of 130 fpm (39.6 mpm), the HP Indigo WS6600 Digital Press is more than twice as productive as Copac’s old digital press. This speed enables Copac to deliver high-value folding cartons on a tight timeline, but the real breakthrough was the press’s optional Inline Priming unit. This allowed Copac to print on silver foil board without sending the material to an outside coater.

By coating the substrate and then feeding it directly into the press, the Inline Priming unit not only saved Copac three to four days, but also helped lower the company’s carbon footprint by eliminating the need to ship the material an extra two times.

Without the cost and time savings made possible by the HP Indigo WS6600 and its Inline Priming unit, Copac would not have had a cost-effective solution to produce this seasonal carton packaging for OMB. “One of the beauties about HP Indigo digital technology is it’s very flexible. This project would have been virtually impossible without inline priming,” McRae said.

From impossible to profitable

With the help of HP Indigo digital technology, Copac has become a company with the technology and know-how to turn impossible jobs into profitable projects. For example, Copac produces folding cartons for a number of tobacco companies, which are required to submit finished sales samples to the government for approval. With the HP Indigo WS6600 Digital Press, Copac can offer finished product samples in about a week for a fraction of the cost of offset.

“HP Indigo’s color matching system is so good, we have no problem printing a few thousand cartons and saying, ‘This is what it’s going to look like,’ knowing that in the end we’re going to print a million cartons using offset,” said McRae.

McRae calls this the product life cycle. The advantages of HP Indigo digital technology, especially its exceptional print quality and speed for strategic/short runs, make it an important tool in Copac’s production environment. By using HP Indigo as a strong complement to conventional technology, Copac provides high quality carton packaging and the flexibility its customers need to respond quickly to changing needs.

“That’s why [HP Indigo] is such a great tool. It matches up so well with offset,” McRae said. In addition, the accuracy and consistency of HP Indigo digital presses help Copac reduce errors and waste throughout the run and during quality inspections.

Customer-driven solutions

According to McRae, Copac remains competitive because it can help its customers meet a range of challenges in a fast-paced world. By offering innovative approaches to labels and carton packaging, Copac is helping its customers differentiate themselves in the marketplace and positioning itself as a leader in print service. With the HP Indigo WS6600 Digital Press, Copac is better equipped to put its customer-focused strategy to work.

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