Digital Magazine

Converting Industry News

Covering the Full Spectrum of Industry News, Events & Activities


Purchase Foam Packaging On-Line

DANBURY, CT, USA—Sealed Air Corp. provides on-line purchasing of Instapak Quick foam packaging through its web site, instapakquick.com. Purchasing the "Quick Start Kit" on-line enables customers to buy an Instapak Quick warmer with a sampling of multiple bag sizes, eliminating the need to purchase one box of every size bag to determine which size is best suited for the application.

Association News

AIMCAL Conference Offers Practical Solutions to Converting Challenges

FORT MILL, SC, USA—The Association of Industrial Metallizers, Coaters and Laminators (AIMCAL) held its Fall Technical Conference October 16-18 at the Radisson Hotel, Valley Forge, PA, with PFFC in attendance. Membership chair Kent Shouse, Kroenert Corp., reported that the association's membership has been growing globally and now includes a total of 152 companies.

A full conference program with concurrent sessions followed a short course, "Critical Thinking in Converting: Solve Problems More Quickly and Efficiently," conducted by David Roisum, Finishing Technologies. Following are details on several sessions of particular interest to converters.

Session 1A on Monday afternoon was devoted to Regulatory Updates. Richard Wright, Ashland Chemical, presented an overview concerning adhesives, chemicals, and solvents that included MON MACT, a proposed rule that will limit hazardous air pollutant (HAP) emissions from the manufacture of coatings, and the CONEG Toxics in Packaging Legislation, designed to reduce concentrations of four heavy metals in packaging and packing components. He provided information on the EPA's progress in reviewing chemicals for removal from the HAP list.

Chip Dunne, Solutia, who chaired the Monday sessions, discussed MACT 2000. The HAP emission limits are based on emission capture and control technology that can reduce total organic HAP emissions by 95% at existing sources and 98% at new sources.

Dr. Joseph Peng, US Postal Service, talked about the Postal Service's Benign PSA Project to ensure that the post office is environmentally responsive with stamps and labels, laminates, and release liners that can be recycled.

Other sessions covered safety in the converting operation; static electricity; flammability reduction; warehouse protection options for flammable storage; and equipment safety.

Tuesday's coating and laminating session, which was chaired by Phil Faria, Lamart Corp., addressed radiation curing and adhesives. According to Rick Fisher, Fusion UV Systems, PSAs are the most active emerging market for UV applications in the converting industry due to mounting environmental pressures, improved raw materials, and more sophisticated end-users. Opportunities will include industrial tapes, where a high volume of solvent is used, and specialty labels that require chemical and water resistance, such as drum labels and fleet graphics. The agenda included a comparison of EV, UV, and thermal systems; a discussion of UV-curable laminating adhesives for clear film laminations; developments and advantages of EB cure in laminating adhesives; and a cost comparison of EB adhesive laminations to solventless adhesive laminations.

Other sessions featured a market update for metallizing technology; a presentation on web handling; and a look at slitting/rewinding.

The next Fall Technical Conference will be held at the Crown Plaza in Hilton Head, SC, in October 2001. Visit AIMCAL at aimcal.org.

Folding Carton Competition Set to Kick Off

ALEXANDRIA, VA, USA—The Paperboard Packaging Council (PPC) has issued a call for entries for its 2001 national competition, which recognizes creativity and overall excellence in the folding carton industry.

Entry forms are available on computer disk and must be received by PPC no later than December 29. Winners will be announced at the PPC's 2001 spring meeting March 18-20 in Chicago, IL. Learn more at ppcnet.org.

New Logo Denotes Compostable Plastics

The International Biodegradable Products Institute (BPI) and the US Composting Council (USCC) report a joint program to certify and identify—via a logo—plastic products that will biodegrade and compost satisfactorily in actively managed compost facilities. The compostable logo will be awarded to those plastic products that conform to the American Society for Testing and Materials Standard D6400-99.

Sharon Barnes, president of USCC, states, "Dealing with plastics has been a long-term problem for composters. Nondegradable plastics in compost increase operational costs and lower the value of the finished materials. Using completely biodegradable materials can improve the profitability of the industry and expand the range of feedstocks that can be collected economically."

Show News

Graph Expo/Converting Expo Draws Some Serious Buyers

CHICAGO, IL, USA—Graph Expo and Converting Expo 2000 drew nearly 46,000 visitors to McCormick Place in September. Exhibitors reported serious buying interest among the attendees, according to Graphic Arts Show Co. (GASC), the show's sponsor.

Heidelberg USA announces it booked more than $150 million in orders during the show, adding that it took orders for more than 50 of its two-color Quickmaster presses. In addition, Heidelberg produced a variety of printed products for the Northern Illinois chapter of the charitable Make-A-Wish Foundation at its Graph Expo exhibit, including the chapter's holiday cards. Eric Frank, VP for Direct Imaging & Digital Printing at Heidelberg, says, "The Make-A-Wish print projects give us an opportunity to show off the Speedmaster 74 DI's advantages at the show. Plus they let us contribute to a good cause."

Komori America reported on-site sales of more than $50 million, and Mark Kilgore, VP/sales and marketing, notes, "We were very pleased with the volume of traffic as well as the quality of the prospects that attended the show."

RDP Marathon, Montreal, Que., Canada, reports that it closed orders in excess of $5.5 million with three US printing companies for its combination web presses.

At CreoScitex America, Dr. Shlomo Shamir reports more sales in the first two days of this year's show than it has ever realized during the entire run of any previous edition of the show.

GASC will host Print 01 at McCormick Place in Chicago Sept. 6-13, 2001.

Grafitalia, Converflex Europe Exhibits Are Getting Larger

MILAN, ITALY—Show organizer Centrexpo reports Grafitalia and Converflex Europe 2001 is 70% sold nine months before the show. Almost all of the exhibitors have requested at least a 15% increase in space over 1998, Centexpo adds.

The show will be held June 12-17 in Milan. For more information on contact Centrexpo at +39 (0)2 31 91 215; fax: +39 0()2 34 16 77; centrexpo.it

Supplier News

Mead Takes Downtime at Stevenson Mill

DAYTON, OH, USA—The Mead Corp. has announced plans to take between 40,000 and 50,000 tons of downtime during the fourth quarter at its Stevenson, AL, containerboard mill to bring inventory levels in line with current business conditions. Employees will be unaffected by this action.

Suppliers Join to Form Total Systems Resource

WINDSOR, CT, USA—A new resource has been formed specifically for roll-to-sheet converters and stationery products manufacturers in North America. Korber PaperLink North America brings together an international group of operating companies that specialize in manufacturing machines for the paper and tissue converting industries.

Korber PaperLink is said to offer converters a single, world-class "total systems solutions" supplier using the resources of E.C.H. Will, Kugler-Womako, Pemco, SHM, and Wrapmatic.

Benefits for converters are said to include competence extending beyond an individual company's machine programs; multiplied power in research and development of optimized machines and converting processes; more time for developing personal relationships with individual customers; and better service for the maintenance of high-efficiency equipment and converting processes.

Selecterra Site Serves Specialty Converters

CHICAGO, IL, USA—Selecterra is an on-line marketplace designed to meet the needs of the specialty converting industry. The e-commerce web site, selecterra.com, went live November 30, at which time registered users were able to take advantage of a list of materials, simplified product selection, on-line order entry, processing and tracking, and technical bulletins.

The site reportedly will fulfill nearly 80% of specialty converters' needs through offerings from suppliers including 3M, Rogers Corp., Rexam Release, Tekra Corp. (offering DuPont Teijin Films, Bayer, and Marnot Hardcoated Films), FLEXcon, Dunsirn Industries, and Tribex. Additionally Mark Andy and RotoMetrics have partnered with Selecterra to offer an on-line resource for capital equipment.

Packaging Ink Costs Go Up

FT. LEE, NJ, USA—Effective October 16 Sun Chemical Corp. has increased the price of packaging inks and coatings by 6%. The company cites as the causes the rising cost of environmental compliance; wage and distribution; and raw materials increases.

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