Digital Magazine

Converting Industry News

Covering the Full Spectrum of Industry News, Events & Activities


  • Wynnchurch Capital, Chicago, IL, purchases a majority interest in Webex, Neenah, WI, designer and manufacturer of rolls and custom web handling machinery. Terms were not disclosed.

  • Honeywell, Morris Township, NJ, announces a price increase for Capran Emblem and Capran Medallion film, effective August 1. Prices will increase 10 cents/lb or as contracts allow.

  • Durst Image Technology, Rochester, NY, enters into an agreement with Tubelite Co., Apopka, FL, to sell and support Durst’s Rho 600 pictor flatbed UV inkjet printer in 18 eastern states.

  • Screen (USA), Rolling Meadows, IL, is celebrating its 40th anniversary in the graphics/prepress industries.

  • i2S Linescan, Pessac, France, specialist in surface inspection, QC, and process optimization systems, is opening a sales office in Orange, CT, for its subsidiary i2S Linescan Imaging.

  • Degussa, Greensboro, NC, celebrates ten years as a producer of food-grade superabsorbent polymers (SAP).

  • Ernst & Young Orenda is financial advisor to Glopak, Montreal, QC, Canada, a manufacturer of flex-pack, on its divestiture to Hood Packaging Corp., Madison, MS, a manufacturer of industrial packaging materials.

  • Heidelberg USA, Kennesaw, GA, says two Prinect workflow solutions, MetaDimension RIP and Signa Station, are certified JDF-compliant by PIA/GATF, which handles certification for CIP4.

  • Softing North America, Newburyport, MA, will provide Foundation fieldbus connectivity to the upcoming release of the Proficy Process Systems solution for process control from GE Fanuc, Charlottesville, VA.

  • VantagePoint Systems, Vancouver, BC, Canada, becomes an Independent Software Vendor in North America, integrating and delivering Microsoft Dynamics GP business management solutions and Microsoft Dynamics Customer Relationship Management software to the paperboard packaging industry.

    Extrusion Coating—It’s a Game-Changer in European Packaging

    By Corey M. Reardon, AWA Alexander Watson Assoc.

    In Europe barrier coatings for gable-top and aseptic packaging have become a major area of focus, with extrusion coating the popular choice for many high-volume applications today. Our company recently published a new study of this key converting technology, which has become a game-changer in European packaging.

    The markets where extrusion-coated materials are used are diverse, ranging from liquid packaging and flexible packaging for both foods and non-foods. In western Europe as in North America, the “traditional” commercial markets for extrusion-coated/laminated materials—photographic/graphic applications, industrial and commercial applications in building, medical/hygiene, and envelopes—have been eclipsed in terms of volume by applications in flexible packaging and liquid packaging. These two key markets are driving the continuing growth of extrusion coating, as environmental concerns encourage the use of packaging that is lightweight, user-friendly, and recyclable. Extrusion-coated packaging meets all these criteria.

    Today, liquid packaging represents the largest market for extrusion-coated materials, not just in Europe but across the globe, with an emphasis on two-sided extrusion coatings for milk cartons and aseptic packaging for UHT milk and juices. Extrusion-coated/laminated materials also account for an estimated 20%-30% of all flexible packaging structures in Europe today—most of them complex laminates employing films and aluminum foils. Growth is highest in applications such as stand-up pouches and high-barrier laminates, and major end-use opportunities include fresh foods, pharmaceuticals, and personal care product packaging.

    We estimate the current total European market for extrusion-coated and/or laminated materials is approximately 23 billion sq m, mostly for flexible and liquid packaging applications. And we have identified some 145 companies—both specialists in extrusion coating and commercial converters—involved in the industry in Europe, many with multiple units and producing a variety of products for the different market applications.

    Demand is forecast to continue to rise by an average 2%/annum, but there are differences between the end-use market segments. Flexible packaging shows the highest growth opportunity at 2.5%/annum as the liquid packaging market matures to grow at just 1%/annum.

    Even extrusion coating technology is affected by the macro pressures on the European packaging industry. The value chain is complex, involving a variety of supply sources—raw materials and chemicals, coating and lamination, conversion—and end-users.

    LDPE was the original extrusion coating polymer, and it remains the most widely used component today by virtue of its cost and performance in terms of heat seal, moisture barrier, and grease resistance.

    However, as Europe’s share of the global manufacturing capacity in PE resins decreases, imports—from the Middle East in particular—add further price pressures. We estimate more than 50% of all Europe’s PE imports will come from the Middle East by 2011.

    Whatever the future holds, however, extrusion coating’s versatility has changed the face of packaging in Europe and continues to offer many opportunities for converters, both specialists in extrusion coating and commercial converters that wish to add new volume capabilities to their portfolios.

    AWA Alexander Watson Assoc. is an international market research consultant company for the converting and packaging industries. Visit awa-bv.com.

    Industry Pioneer John Dusenbery Passes Away
    RANDOLPH, NJ | John F. Dusenbery, founder of the John Dusenbery Co., died August 16 at the age of 91.

    Dusenbery started the company in1941, making sextants and adjusting compasses for ships. Among the well-known vessels he worked on were the Queen Mary and Queen Elizabeth. In 1945 he started designing and building machinery used by paper manufacturers for slitting paper and rewinding paper products.

    Throughout the 1950s Dusenbery worked closely with suppliers of medical items, specifically manufacturers of surgical tapes and goods; in the 1960s he added PE bread wraps, and in the 1970s magnetic tapes and goods.

    The John Dusenbery Co. (trading as Dusenbery Worldwide) developed numerous patents over the years and established relationships throughout the world.

    Acquisition News
    CHICAGO, IL | Mesirow Financial reports New Jersey Packaging, a sub. of Menasha Corp., has acquired Creative Press, a manufacturer of pharmaceutical packaging products including cartons, labels, and inserts. Mesirow served as exclusive financial advisor to Creative Press in the acquisition.

    Mesirow also served as financial advisor to Salerno Plastics Corp., with plants in Plattsburgh, NY, and Châteauguay, QC, Canada. Salerno was sold by Pegasus Capital Advisors to a five-partner management group backed by the Solidarity Fund QFL and Capital régional et coopératif Desjardins.

    New IR Consulting Company is Formed
    FRANKLIN LAKES, NJ | K. Irani has formed Infrared Technologies, offering consulting services to industries in which temperature is a critical factor in the manufacturing process and where selection of the right instrument is crucial to achieving precise temperature measurements.

    Irani has worked in the field of noncontact IR temperature measurement for more than 30 years and has been actively involved in the design, manufacture, and management of a number of products. These include IR thermometers, pyrometers, blackbody calibration sources, and thermal imaging systems.

    Partnering in P-S Tapes
    WEST CONSHOHOCKEN, PA| Victrex announces a partnership with Covalence Adhesives, Franklin, MA, to provide a new line of high-performance p-s tapes.

    Covalence uses APTIV film, made with Victrex’s PEEK polymer, as tape backing material. Two high-performing adhesive systems are available as the family of APTIV p-s tapes: one acrylic based and one silicone based. These adhesive systems developed by Covalence are designed to complement the high-temperature performance of APTIV film.

    Both companies will market, promote, and develop APTIV film-based tape applications globally. Victrex recently opened a new facility in the UK dedicated solely to the production of APTIV.

    “With Victrex’s new film manufacturing capabilities a key part of [our] fully integrated supply chain, we are able to supply Covalence directly with a more competitively priced product,” says John Getz, Victrex global commercial leader–film. Sums up Scott Conway, Covalence VP of marketing, “This partnership creates a win for both companies and for our customers.”

    FTA’s Golden Anniversary RONKONKOMA, NY| The Flexographic Technical Assn. (FTA) has chosen an official logo to commemorate its 50th anniversary in 2008. Membership has grown from 20 when the association was founded September 26, 1958, to more than 1,400 today. FTA will celebrate the occasion throughout the year, including the unveiling of a journal covering 50 years at the 2008 Annual Forum & INFO*FLEX Exhibition, set for April 27–30 in Dallas, TX. Sendo criado pela PG Soft, o Fortune Tiger, também conhecido como jogo do tigre, é o slot do momento.Entre todos os slots https://fortunetiger-jogo.com/ de cassino que vemos nos dias atuais, não há dúvidas de que a Fortune Tiger é uma das que mais estão chamando atenção. Mas, você sabe como ela funciona? Onde jogar? For more information visit flexography.org.

    InteliCoat Sells Business Unit
    SOUTH HADLEY, MA | InteliCoat Technologies has sold its Electronic and Engineered Films (EEF) business unit to Exopack Holding, Spartanburg, SC.

    “The sale of [this] business unit will allow InteliCoat to focus on its core competencies with respect to the global product development, manufacturing, and marketing of digital imaging media…,” says Joe Lupone, president and CEO of InteliCoat. The new acquisition by Exopack is renamed Exopack Advanced Coatings and will maintain its operations in Matthews, NC, and North Wales, UK.

    Rockwell Adds ICS
    MILWAUKEE, WI | Rockwell Automation has reached an agreement to acquire Industrial Control Services Group (ICS), Maldon, UK, for ££110 million in cash. ICS trades and does business as ICS Triplex, a global supplier of critical control and safety solutions to process industries.

    ICS Triplex will be included in the Control Products and Solutions operating segment.

    Brushfoil Expands In South America
    GUILFORD, CT | Brushfoil has appointed Nelxon Technical Films, Araras, Brazil, as distributor in South America. Nelxon distributes flexible films for industrial, packaging, and graphic applications. Nelxon, which handles materials for a number of high-profile companies, will aid in the introduction of new products and suppliers to the Brazilian market, as well as Brushfoil’s planned expansion throughout South America, especially in Argentina, Brazil, and Chile.

    Chevron Sells OS Business
    DUNCAN, SC | Sealed Air Corp. has acquired Chevron Phillips Chemical Co.’s oxygen scavenging (OS) business, including production assets, patents, and other intellectual properties for oxygen scavenging technology that can be used in the food, medical, and pharmaceutical industries. Terms were not disclosed.

    The OS films are established for applications such as lidding on thermoformed packages or tray and F/F/S pouch applications.

    Digraph Distributes ECRM
    TEWKSBURY, MA | ECRM reports a distribution agreement with Digraph, Pomezia, Italy. Says Francois Boverat, ECRM’s business development manager, Eastern Hemisphere, “As we have seen throughout the industry, the Italian market is increasingly seeking out Violet CTP solutions. ECRM now has an agreement with Digraph…because they too are realizing this demand among their customer base.”

    Digraph offers a wide range of prepress, printing, and finishing systems.

    Showing Off New Press
    GIRONA, SPAIN | At an open house held this summer, Schulz, Nuremberg, Germany, showed off its new EB press from Comexi. The FW 1508 EB prints on many materials, including foil, paper, PVC, PET, PA, BOPP, and CPP. It is said to be especially well suited for food packaging such as yogurt lids and for uses in the pharmaceutical and cosmetics industry.

    Reportedly, the press has been running three different substrates at Schulz, allowing the converter to develop different jobs and become more versatile.

    PAC Doubles Its Space
    NEWARK, DE | Precision AirConvey (PAC) recently celebrated the expansion of its headquarters, more than doubling its space to 200,000 sq ft.

    The expansion includes a new product R&D center and testing lab with full-size, fully operating trim handling systems, plastics auxiliary equipment, and static control systems, as well as new warehouse space with advanced inventory controls.

    PAC says the new space includes offices for sales engineers, IT support, and quality control management, new positions created to accommodate and capitalize on the company’s continuing growth. Since its founding in 1999, PAC has increased revenues 200% to more than $11 million annually.

    MILAN, ITALY | ACIMGA (the Italian Mfrs. Assn. of Machinery for the Graphic, Converting and Paper Industry) celebrated its 60th anniversary with two announcements: Ugo Barzanò is reappointed president for the next two years; and figures are showing growth in this industry in Italy despite negative figures in other mechanical production sectors.

    The association reports the graphic, converting, and paper industry has grown 12% from 2004 to 2006, exports have more than doubled, and the percentage of revenues generated by foreign markets was approximately 80% of the total.

    UV is the Star
    N&220;RTINGEN, GERMANY | IST Metz held its third UV Days at group headquarters in Nürtingen July 18-22, welcoming 697 visitors, more than double the number attending the first event in 2002. Included was an in-house exhibition, two workshops, and a facility tour.

    The exhibition featured 27 companies that IST Metz calls its industry partners. These included companies supplying substrates, inks, varnishes, adhesives, blankets, and chemicals. Ancillary areas such as static neutralization, inspection, die-cutting, temperature control, and anilox rollers were also covered in the exhibit.

    Anilox Roller Agreement
    SPARTANBURG, SC | Interflex Laser Engravers and Kurt Zecher, Paderborn, Germany, both manufacturers of anilox rollers, report a strategic partnership in which Interflex will support all service activities on Zecher rollers in North American markets. The partnership will give Interflex the opportunity to service the European embossing and graphic coating markets with on-site support from Zecher.

    Trends Seen at drupa 2008
    CHICAGO, IL | With more than 1,800 exhibitors, the next drupa will offer something for everyone involved in print. Set for May 29-June 11, 2008, at the Fairgrounds in Düsseldorf, Germany, the quadrennial event will provide a clear look at printing trends, says John Parsons, Seybold/USA, in a report issued by drupa organizer Messe Düsseldorf.

    Parsons points out that drupa 2004 was called “’the JDF drupa,’ marking the emergence of the CIP4 standard as a mature, albeit verbose process automation standard. Set demonstrators established JDFs ‘proof on concept’ to many printing companies, intent on ways to improve efficiency. The vast majority of equipment and system vendors talked about their JDF development plans—even if they did not have working demos on the floor. [At drupa 2008], automation will be an even more pressing issue for printers under pressure to save on production costs.”

    Adds CIP4 CEO Jim Harvey, “JDF greatly reduces the cost of integration between systems and companies as each system is designed to work with JDF and not the proprietary interfaces of a zillion other systems. JDF is just a standard language that systems in our industry can share. By itself, JDF does nothing; it’s the systems that do the work.”

    The social and environmental impact of print is another emerging trend that will be evident at the show, reports Parsons. Areas of interest will include chain of-custody certification for paper, he says, and he expects a marked increase in the means to measure environmental impact. Parsons adds that visitors to drupa will also find exhibitors addressing specific environmental issues, such as waste stream processing.

    Trends in digital solutions, RFID applications, and inkjet developments all will be featured at drupa.

    “For printers willing to intelligently take on new technologies and new business models, the future has never been brighter,” Parsons sums up. Visit drupa.de.

    Agreeing to Save Forests

    SPIKKESTAD, NORWAY | Elopak, a provider of cartons and plastic-based packaging systems for non-carbonated fresh and long-life liquid food products, is part of an environmental agreement signed this past summer.

    Elopak CEO Niels Petter Wright met with SIG Combibloc and Tetra Pak CEOs and EU Commissioner Günter Verheugen. They signed a voluntary agreement that ensures the board used by these companies comes from forests managed in an environmentally appropriate manner.

    Says Wright, “Through this unique agreement the beverage carton industry will contribute to protect and improve the environment, specifically through preventing illegal logging.” Controlled wood sources are independently verified according to strict standards in the agreement, which is based on EU’s forest action plan.

    Paper, Wind, & Fuel
    COHOES, NY | Mohawk Fine Papers calls itself a leader in environmental stewardship, and several recent announcements make the point.

    The company has issued the Strathmore Sustainability Portfolio, offering six stories about companies that practice sustainability in their products and businesses. The portfolio itself is printed on the recently reformulated Strathmore Script, offering a range of sustainable choices including 30% and 100% recycled options. The entire line is made using renewable wind-generated electricity.

    Mohawk says its fleet of five trucks has been converted over to a biodiesel fuel mix, a clean-burning alternative fuel made from natural, renewable sources such as new and used vegetable oils and animal fats.

    To help raise public awareness about global warming, Mohawk is a corporate sponsor of Cool Globes, a project that uses the medium of public art to inspire individuals and organizations to take action.

    An early leader in the use of wind-generated electricity for manufacturing, Mohawk says that as of March 1, 2007, it increased its purchase of wind-generated electricity from 45,000,000 kWh to 60,000,000 kWh annually. This is approximately 60% of all the electric energy used for Mohawk’s manufacturing, converting, and distribution operations.

    Biodegradable Food Packaging Study
    TOLLAND, CT | Nerac releases a report entitled “Biodegradable Food Packaging: An Environmental Imperative.”

    Findings indicate demand for biodegradable packaging is growing as consumers’ environmental concerns increase and as large retailers pressure food manufacturers to encase goods in earth-friendly materials. However, biodegradable packaging remains a niche market.

    Europe is far ahead of the US, says the report, accounting for nearly 60% of the market for biodegradable packaging. Reportedly, the economic viability of biodegradable plastics made from renewable sources is increasing as production ramps up and unit costs decrease. In addition, a range of renewable plant materials studied is widening, and several show great promise.

    The complete report can be downloaded at no cost at nerac.com/food/packaging-report-download.

    IP Adds Environmental Team
    MEMPHIS, TN | International Paper (IP) creates an Office of Sustainability to champion company-wide conservation and natural resources stewardship strategies and to support the environmental goals of customers.

    According to IP, the office will focus its efforts around wood fiber, conservation, air, water, life-cycle analysis, and other natural resources issues as they pertain to the needs of its customers.

    The team’s work will include raising awareness of key sustainability issues, leading third-party certification and product labeling efforts, developing partnerships with stakeholders, and implementing policies to support IP’s sustainability objectives.

    Dr. Sharon G. Haines, who has been at IP for more than 30 years, will be in charge of the office.

    Getting New Power
    VALHALLA, NY | Fujifilm’s primary US manufacturing complex, located in Greenwood, SC, plans to use methane gas from a local community landfill to power approximately 40% of the facility’s operations.

    Through an arrangement with Greenwood Country and Methane Credit, methane gas will be extracted from the landfill and piped into the Fujifilm complex, where it will be used in two of the four boilers. The facility will use approximately 197 billion BTUs of methane-generated energy from the landfill/yr, the equivalent of the amount of energy used to heat more than 5,000 homes each year.

    “This landfill gas-to-energy project will help us reduce our greenhouse gas emissions by 10%, will significantly reduce our energy costs, and will reduce our dependence on fossil fuels,” says Johnny Udo, director of Environmental, Health & Safety for Fujifilm in South Carolina.

    The company also supports habitat and species preservation programs and is committed to reducing global energy consumption at its large manufacturing facilities by 10% from 1999 numbers and reducing carbon dioxide emissions by 20% from 1990 numbers, all by 2010.

    Michael Haecker joins GMG, Tuebingen, Germany, as VP of sales.

    William Curtin, president of Press Color, Appleton and Glendale, WI, wins the Printing Ink Pioneer Award from NAPIM, the National Assn. of Printing Ink Mfrs.

    XSYS Print Solutions, Plymouth, MN, reports Ewald Draaijer, who served eight years as president and general manager, is leaving the company to pursue other activities. He will be succeeded as president by Russell Joyce.

    Scott Wiese joins Maxcess, Oklahoma City, OK, to provide local service and support for Fife, MAGPOWR, and Tidland products in Minnesota, western Wisconsin, Iowa, North and South Dakota, and Nebraska.

    Charles Knott assumes the role of CEO for Flint Group, Luxembourg. He succeeds Dave Frescoln, who becomes deputy chairman of the company’s boards.

    The board of directors at Presstek, Hudson, NH, names Jeffrey Jacobson president and CEO, as well as a member of the board.

    Tom Johns joins Extrusion Dies Industries (EDI), Chippewa Falls, WI, as product manager for the Liberty range of slot die coating systems. Jason Q. Yin is now general manager of EDI Precision Dies (Shanghai) Co. Ltd., the company’s wholly owned subsidiary in China.

    Appleton, Appleton, WI, names Roger Buck business development manager for the security papers unit.

    Martin Wilson is promoted to president at SleeveCo, Dawsonville, GA. Owner David Johnson will remain as CEO and chairman of the board.

    Unilux, Saddle Brook, NJ, announces Joe Zhao as sales manager for China, to be based in Shanghai.

    Novatec, Baltimore, MD, opens a Great Lakes Regional Projects office in Kalamazoo, MI, and announces Douglas Arndt as regional VP for system design and director of the new office.

    Phil Lawler is now non-executive chairman at Xaar, Cambridge, UK. Arie Rosenfeld retires from the board.

    Nim-Cor, Nashua, NH, hires Donald Chapin as national sales manager.

    Harold Leete joins Bobst Group North America, Roseland, NJ, as regional sales manager, folding carton equipment, northeast territory.

    CC1, Portsmouth, NH, adds Jatinder Sappal as application engineer/project manager.

    Toray Plastics (America), North Kingstown, RI, names Richard Schloesser executive VP.

    Stephen Montaito is appointed director of sales and marketing at Parkinson Technologies, Woonsocket, RI.

    ADM Tronics, Northvale, NJ, adds Thomas Kistler as director of sales and marketing for aqueous chemicals.

    Mohawk Fine Papers, Cohoes, NY, adds Peter Vogel to the board of directors.

    Gene Sanders will serve as VP of trade shows for the Society of the Plastics Industry, Washington, DC.

    Frank Burkus joins Nordson Corp., Duluth, GA, as global business development manager for new materials in the Adhesive Systems Group.

    The Converting Systems Group of Davis-Standard, Pawcatuck, CT, promotes Steve Cole to VP, manufacturing and purchasing.

    , part of Great Northern Corp.’s Specialty Group, Appleton, WI, hires Gary Weber as VP of manufacturing; long-time director of manufacturing Chuck Hanson is now director of special projects.

    Uli Interriker is named director of sales and marketing Americas for The Hudson-Sharp Co., Green Bay, WI.

    Digitalabel, Durham, NC, hires Peter Schambs as national product and sales manager.

    Fusion UV Systems, Gaithersburg, MD, adds Kevin Lascola as senior product engineer in the Standard Engineering Dept.

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