Flexo printers from around the world submitted more than 500 projects to be evaluated by a panel of judges in the 2013 Flexographic Technical Association (FTA) Excellence in Flexography Awards. The awards were presented at the FTA Forum & INFO*FLEX show in San Diego last month, and Kodak customers took home three of the seven coveted overall “Best of Show” honors for their outstanding projects.
In addition to the three “Best of Show” winners, Kodak customers from North America, Europe, Japan and Australia also captured 20 additional awards across six different flexo categories. All 23 of the award-winning jobs were produced exclusively with KODAK FLEXCEL NXH Plates, demonstrating the versatility of the technology and the ability to deliver outstanding results across a variety of applications with a single plate type.
“The fact that nearly half of the ‘Best of Show’ awards went to Kodak customers demonstrates how our technology is helping users do more with less and differentiate themselves in a very competitive environment. The KODAK FLEXCEL NX System truly is a proven solution,” said Dr. John Anderson, Kodak’s Packaging Segment Sales & Product Marketing Director, United States and Canada. “Our family of award-winning flexo solutions is designed to streamline production, deliver high-quality print results, and create high-impact packaging that drives growth.”
During the evaluation process, judges inspected the print jobs in terms of level of execution and degree of difficulty. Some of the areas examined include registration tolerances, printing complexity, tonal range, image sharpness, ink coverage, dot/screen/vignette quality, and consistency.
The following entries from Kodak customers earned both a Gold Award and the distinguished “Best of Show” in their respective classes:
• Sunshine Plastics Corp. for extruding, printing, laminating, and converting the “Autumn Lakes Duck A L’Orange wrapper” with prepress and plates supplied by Trisoft Graphics Inc., California. This award represents the second Best of Show Award for Sunshine and third Best of Show Award for Trisoft in recent years.
• Colbert Flexographic Packaging Corp. for the “EnviroGuard carton” with prepress and plates supplied by Autumn Graphics, Canada. Hear more from Colbert at http://youtu.be/Vu54-IyW-Ok.
• Encore Envelopes Ltd., UK, for the “Tesco Every Little Helps envelope”
Encore Envelopes Ltd. in the U.K. uses FLEXCEL NX Plates exclusively and won a total of five awards this year at the FTA show, including the “Best of Show.” In fact, the company has scooped the top award in each of the past five years using FLEXCEL NX Plates. “The skill of flexo printing is being able to control all the many variables that exist in the process, and for us the Kodak solution takes the plates off the table as a variable,” said Paul Wilson, Print Manager. “They are totally repeatable and consistent—nothing varies from one day to another. So we don’t need to be constantly measuring, and that allows us to get great efficiencies from the press. We want to be the best at what we do, and the FLEXCEL NX System helps us to do that.”
One of the trends noted by judges is that today’s technology is helping flexographic printing achieve photorealistic quality. Many of them indicated that flexography is continuing to rival and even surpass offset, gravure, and digital print processes.
“This was a very exciting week for our customers—many of whom are becoming frequent award winners for their printed work using Kodak’s flexo technology,” added Anderson. “Flexography is a growing market undergoing significant change right now, and together with our customers, Kodak is proud to be a part of the continuing innovation.”
The FTA Forum and INFO*FLEX is one of North America’s most significant flexographic events of the year, and attendees come to see the latest technology and learn more about the market trends that can help them grow their business.