Flexibility and efficiency are the keys to success

As packaging manufacturing profits become thinner and thinner, how to find ways to further increase profits is always a headache for most processors. Primopost, based in Buxton, UK, believes that the only way to survive in a highly competitive market is to continue to increase efficiency. As a result, the company is currently investing in the purchase of the latest, most productive equipment, and is constantly experimenting with new ones. s material.

“We have all seen the fact that the current long-term work is decreasing and the short-lived work is increasing,” said Production Director Robert Donaldson. “So our response was to focus on shortening the replacement time and minimizing the loss.” In the production of single pieces, it is usually between 200 and 1000 kg. Less than 200 kg is also becoming more and more common.

To increase productivity in this environment, Primopost has just installed a Schiavi Sigma eight-color gearless flexo press and a Schiavi Ecoflex coating laminator. The management and operation personnel of the factory have left a deep impression on the ease of operation of such equipment, especially in terms of reducing the time and cost of replacing products. “The two devices helped us increase productivity, which is what we have always hoped for,” explains Rob Donaldson. “For example, the Sigma press makes it very quick and easy for us to replace a product. It also has The high operating speed and excellent print quality are largely due to its gearless transmission technology.

Primopost has worked with Pacprint Services, which was founded in 1970 and mainly imports packaging materials from Europe. After Primopost suspended its cooperation with 1986, it immediately began to expand its slitting and rewinding business, mainly focusing on OPP film and stack packaging film. The company moved to its current position in 1987. In the early 1990s, Primopost also set foot in the printing sales business. In 2000 it started its own printing business. The company's current production plant has been steadily expanding. Today, its production, storage and office space is 40,000 square feet, which will increase further if needed.

Primopost said that the Ecoflex coating machine, like the Sigma press, is versatile and easy to operate. It can be solvent coated or solventless, can be precisely registered, and can be applied to a range of coating methods: including cold seal, anti-fog coating, and PVdC. The transition time between different products has reached a minimum, and an integrated register system developed by the Bobst Group (Schiavi is a member) is said to ensure rapid and accurate registration.

"In practice," Rob Donaldson said, "We could do a cold seal on the preprinted web in the morning, and then change to an antifog coating for salads in the afternoon, and finally do a composite operation at night. All these It's all done on the same Ecoflex machine."

Sales Director Alastair Bearman said that Schiavi's equipment is very important for the company's growth target of 25% in 2005. “In addition to providing better services to current customers and maintaining business growth, one of the challenges facing this new facility is to help us develop new materials and structures. With this, we can reduce our customers’ packaging costs and Improve their efficiency. This is good for them and good for us because it will further strengthen our cooperation."

Primopost purchases raw materials globally and maintains close technical and commercial partnerships with major OPP film and paper manufacturers. Both new machines can easily handle the latest generation of ultra-thin films to produce light-weight, economical composites that meet today's ever-increasing, increasingly competitive market.

The company's customer list looks like a collection of well-known companies in the food industry. The potential trend of customers supplying printed films to unprinted films led Primopost to enter the printing market first. Printed and composite materials currently account for nearly half of the business, and unprinted film is still a very important business for the company. Alastair Bearman believes that the company is the largest manufacturer of OPP film in the United Kingdom. It can provide immediate customer service, and there are no restrictions on substrate and size.

Before making the decision to purchase Ecoflex coating compositing machines and Sigma presses, Primopost also examined a large number of equipment. Its final purchase decision was largely influenced by the display and training facilities that the company’s management saw at the Piacenza headquarters in Schiavi. “Their training and testing center showed us exactly what the equipment can do. We believe their after-sale training and support will be perfect. Our subsequent experience proved that the purchase decision was correct. Rob Donaldson said.

The Bobst Group also provided Primopost with a series of slitting equipment in the form of three Titan SR devices. The most recent investment is a 1,600mm wide SR7 device with a maximum speed of 600m/min. In addition, it also has a laser centering and a different rewinding reel. The former allows the operator to quickly and accurately load new coils, minimizing setup time and avoiding restarting operations. Rob Donaldson said that different rewinding reels on the Titan SR7 can guarantee excellent tension control, while the latest fully automatic Meech pulse static eliminator minimizes problems caused by static electricity.

When asked what is the biggest challenge faced by European processors, Barry Bearman, founder and managing director of Primopost, said that in his opinion, the packaging industry will be under increasing competitive pressure from the Middle East and the Far East. Especially in the long version of the live. “For processors, there is always a suitable market for you to provide first-class service and quality at competitive prices. To succeed, you really need this unique selling point,” he said. “For Primopost, We have already supplied non-printing OPP film for most of the large food companies, so providing them with printed OPP film can also be a natural transition. We have already shared the management system with them, so when they want to print Film, then there is no need to sign a contract. It also saves shipping costs."

Barry Bearman believes that 250 to 500 kilograms of jobs, even if they require eight-color flexo, are not attractive to large-scale processors because their equipment and production structure determine this. This area is where he believes Primopost can stand out because the company is focused on this type of karma and has a proven track record, and in September 2000 it implemented industry-accepted quality standards such as BRC/IOP.

The company’s management team is pleased with the new equipment’s contribution to helping the company achieve its business strategy. “It is helping us achieve our goals,” Alastair Bearman said. “The new Schiavi equipment increases our production capacity while also increasing our production efficiency and production diversity. This means we can handle shorter and shorter Delivery time, and we can also help our customers with this urgent order.

Reprinted from: International Packaging Printing and Processing

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