We continue our story about the recent developments in flexible packaging, highlighted by the 58th Annual FPA Flexible Packaging Achievement Awards recently presented by the Flexible Packaging Association.
At the FPA Awards Ceremony, Rollprint Packaging Products, Inc. also walked away with Gold for Technical Innovation and Silver for Packaging Excellence awarded to its development of Ghost.
Ghost is a technology that creates an integrated, repeating watermark embedded in the composite flexible packaging material making it technically and economically challenging to duplicate.
The repeating watermark, which is actually an optical effect, is added by cooling the extruded film differentially during manufacturing. The technique produces sharp images and crisp type down to 4-point size and the effect is visible to the naked eye.
Companies have the flexibility to use corporate logos, brand names or other graphics for the easily visible, overt watermark which provides visual confirmation to the user that the products being used are authentic.
Since the watermark is added concurrently during normal processing, it can be done with little added cost. No additives are required to create the watermark effect. Ghost is a cost effective tool to thwart counterfeiters and ensure brand protection.
The key to creating the watermark is differentially cooling the extrudate precisely enough to create a crisp, distinct image. Attempting to duplicate the watermark requires specialized equipment with knowledge of proprietary, advanced technology, coupled with significant financial investment. In other words: A challenging hurdle for counterfeiters.
Ghost is ideally suited for chevron pouches and can also be used in conjunction with blister packs and packaging for security-driven or luxury items, such as electronic components, collectibles, documents, jewellery, etc.
The technology is compatible with aluminium foil structures, with Rollprint’s ClearFoil clear high-barrier materials, metallized materials, or standard materials such as polyester, nylon, or oriented polypropylene. Sealants can be welded or peelable and employ a wide variety of chemistries.
From a package design standpoint, because the watermark is made with precise control during the cooling, it creates a sharp, distinct image rather than just a smear. With this proprietary technology, complex line work and type as small as 4-pt is crisp and legible. Ghost provides a subtle image that reinforces the brand.
The watermark is said to have no impact on sealing properties. The watermarked material sealed at the same temperature, pressure, and dwell conditions will yield statistically the same seal strength as material with no watermark, Rollprint says. Ghost does not interfere with hermetic seals and the quality of the seal is unchanged.
5. SC Johnson Glade PlugIns Winter Collection
Nearly two-thirds (63%) of Americans purchase scented products as in their opinion a fragrance will inspire a positive mood or feeling. Additionally, nearly half (48%) say the December holidays are the most fragrant, with Thanksgiving close behind (35%), according to a recent survey conducted by SC Johnson Glade, the manufacturer of Glade.
It is no wonder that in this olfactory Eldorado, SC Johnson is frequently introducing new fragrances and dispensing systems. For its Winter Collection the company was honoured with Silver for Printing Achievement, in fact realised by American Packaging Corporation.
For the packaging, designed by Schawk, American Packaging used flexographic high definition printing technology to create an eye catching graphic. An unconventional rotation of the printing decks was used to create depth and colour to the stars and snow in the glade plugIns Winter Collection package.
6. Ecolab Coex Stand-up Pouch
It isn’t often that a typical only-functional packaging innovation receives an award when it is among the glamorous retail packages which usually dominate Award Ceremonies and are solely designed to please the consumer over the importance of functionality. So, to see a strictly about function packaging being recognised for Technical Innovation is very rewarding.
Designed by Ecolab’s own Jeff Schultz, and manufactured by Ampac the new Ecolab Coex pouch is designed to employ the least amount of material, incorporate versatility and utility to the package while keeping the end user’s safety on the forefront of the design.
Ecolab’s Oasis Pro is a line of different (chemical) products sold to institutions in the hospitality, healthcare and foodservice sectors. Switching van rigid bottles and jugs to a flexible packaging required a pouch material that would be compatible with all of these highly concentrated chemicals and meets the United Nation’s regulatory requirements for shipment of hazardous materials.
Consequently, unlike the standard stand-up pouch, the 2 litre Oasis Pro 10”x9” pouch is made of material 6 mils thick material and rests on a broader-than-normal 5’’-wide gusseted base to give it stability in a squat compact shape. Therefore the successful launch of this packaging is said to be due in part to the breakthrough of the film composition paired with a pleated bottom (gusset) pouch geometry intended to house liquid chemicals.
The pouch incorporates an IPN Clean Clic dispensing fitment that permits a quick-connect to Ecolab’s dispensing system. The fitment is injection-moulded in one piece which helps eliminate the possibility of customers’ direct contact with the cleaning products. The fitment acts as a one-way flow valve. When the filling or dispensing probe is retracted the fitment reseals itself so the pouch and fitment remain sealed when not in use.
Hormel Chili Pour Overs Retort Pouch
Cans have reigned as the premier food packaging since its invention. But, as I lined out in my article about Food Waste other packaging formats are undermining its and the glass jars’ dominant position in conserved food and trying to send the metal can to the packaging museum. The Recart retortable carton from Tetra Pak is one “enemy” while the retort stand-up pouch is another.
To look at a perfect replacement read about the Stand-up Pouch that imitates a canning jar of La Maison Le Grand of St-Joseph-du-Lac/Canada, in my article “Interesting Developments in Stand-Up Pouches“. Unfortunately this packaging wasn’t an entry in the FPA Achievement Awards 2014.
Although not so perfect an imitation, the Hormel Chili Pour Overs Retort Pouches are promoted as the poster child for can replacement. The consumer-pleasing packaging provides a fast, convenient way to enjoy chili, helping as a topper or a favourite fast food.
The microwavable pouches are produced by Curwood, Inc., A Bemis Company, on high-speed filling lines that approach speeds of cans, making them cost competitive.
I have some examples left for the third article.