Expanding SPQ to include rotogravure printing

Date: 21.11.2023Source: SÜDPACK

It reduces ink and solvent consumption while simultaneously optimising print quality – with its innovative SPQ technology for flexo printing, SÜDPACK already offers potential carbon savings for package printing. The manufacturer has expanded the range of use for the innovative printing process to also include rotogravure printing and now offers an alternative that is not only highly efficient, but also conserves resources.

Using the technology for rotogravure printing requires the complete standardisation of machine and process parameters as well as smart colour management. And just like for flexo printing, all of the designs are mapped automatically in the pre-press stage using a reduced colour palette.

Thanks to the PUR-based (polyurethane) colour system, the ink is also suitable for pasteurisation and sterilisation. This opens up a wide variety of options for applications that involve heating, for example for packaging ready meals, pet food or baby food. The technology is also ideal for finishing flexible films for high-quality, fast-moving consumer goods, such as coffee, tea or confectionery, because it can also incorporate metallic colours, like gold or silver, as well as coatings for texture and other finishes. The process is also suitable for imprinting Digimarc digital watermarks.

Using SPQ can significantly reduce the carbon footprint of package printing. This is due in particular to the reduction of the standard colour palette from ten to just seven colours, which decreases both ink and solvent consumption.

Said Enrico Riesel, Senior Site Director, SÜDPACK Bioggio: “With SPQ, we significantly reduce ink consumption, ink waste and the number of colour changes. Even though the colour palette is reduced to seven colours, it is still possible to realise virtually the entire colour spectrum as well as additional metallic colours – all while maintaining superior print quality similar that of a photo as well as excellent colour brilliance.”

In-house calculations performed by SÜDPACK have shown that limiting the palette to seven colours leads to a saving of approximately 36.5% in a typical standard process for a print order for 15 thousand running meters. Additional factors in terms of sustainability include lower energy consumption and the reduction of film waste that would have usually been produced during the changeover of printing machines for the next print order.

SÜDPACK customers benefit most particularly from the reduced amount of effort required in the pre-press stage. Using a strictly defined colour space eliminates not only constant colour adjustments, but also complex and costly on-site print approval. An additional advantage is that different print designs can be combined in one print order.

Last but not least, the new technology stands out due to its high register accuracy as well as its outstanding colour consistency and colour brilliance. This is thanks to consistent, smart colour management along the process chain, which, as Enrico Riesel confirmed, SÜDPACK “completely reinterpreted and reconceptualised from the very beginning of the project.” Realistically speaking, the standardised colour palette can create approximately 95% of all Pantone colours – and does so with stable, reproducible colour conversion. As a result, SPQ completely eliminates all of the adjustments that had been necessary for conventional printing processes.  For more visit suedpack.com

David Cox / IDM

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