The second beta-testing site to receive a BOBST digital printing press for corrugated board is the Schumacher Packaging plant in Ebersdorf, Germany, where the installation is already well under way and where production will start at the end of this month.
The Ebersdorf site, in central Germany, is the central hub of Schumacher Packaging GmbH, which has thirteen sites across Germany, Poland and the Netherlands. Björn Schumacher, Managing Director of Schumacher Packaging GmbH, said, "We are very excited about the possibilities this BOBST press offers for opening up new market areas to us. We continuously invest in high-performance, state-of-the-art machines in all our production areas, which is one of the reasons we have been able to grow our business significantly over the past few years. Being a beta site for this digital solution gets us in on the ground floor of this revolutionary technology."
Designed and built in Switzerland, the BOBST digital printing press for corrugated board prints images, graphics, codes and text, which can vary from sheet to sheet. Production speeds can reach 200 meters per minute, with a maximum sheet width of 1.3 meters. Applications include serialization, personalized packs, versioned packaging, customized corrugated products, and medium to short-runs of conventional boxes and displays. Incorporating Kodak Stream Inkjet Technology, the BOBST press delivers four-color digital print directly onto corrugated board and print run lengths can be from a single sheet to several thousand. The collaboration between technology leaders BOBST and Kodak has produced a digital press which exhibits a combination of print quality, speed and versatility which will allow converters to better respond to an increasingly dynamic market.
Jean-Pascal Bobst, CEO of Bobst Group, said, "The print technology choices that corrugated packaging manufacturers have had available to them, up until now, have determined the markets they can serve. Our new solution changes all this because one printing press can open up a huge range of markets, from long runs of boxes featuring variable data to very short runs of bespoke packs and displays - as well giving access to a large number of mid-volume opportunities. And all this is delivered at high speed, with close to offset quality. It means that corrugated packaging manufacturers will be able to enter all sorts of existing and new markets."
The Kodak Stream Inkjet Technology used in the BOBST digital printing press has a number of characteristics that make it ideal for corrugated packaging production. This continuous inkjet printing technology provides greater throw distance compared to drop-on-demand inkjet enabling print on a wide range of substrate thicknesses; its high speed continuous jetting makes the press more responsive and so able to print variable data at faster speeds; and the technology uses water-based inks which are food compliant, compatible with a wide range of coated and uncoated substrates and more environmentally friendly. The jetting modules are self-maintaining and, when they need to be replaced, can be refurbished and recycled with minimal waste.
"This product represents the first generation of solutions from the Strategic Partnership we announced with BOBST in 2013," said Philip Cullimore, Sr. VP of Kodak, and President, Enterprise Inkjet Systems Division. "Kodak Stream Inkjet Technology fits well into the product vision of BOBST to provide production digital capabilities."
Philippe Milliet, Head of Business Unit Sheet-fed, added, "Brand owners want more flexibility, especially at the late stage, as well as equal or better print quality. They also aim to increase engagement with consumers, while at the same time keeping costs under control. Our digital solution gives our customers the ability to deliver all that using one machine."