H.B. Fuller Co. brought 50 flexible packaging converters together on September 22 to see live demonstrations of its new Nordmeccanica Super Combi 3000 Laminator and participate in an end-user panel discussion with representatives from prominent global packaged goods manufacturers. The symposium, Focus Forward, was hosted by H.B. Fuller at its headquarters in St. Paul, Minn., and provided a unique opportunity for converters to learn how the laminator can help them develop new flexible packaging innovations.

“The theme we have heard throughout this symposium has been innovation,” said Brendon Kryzer, H.B. Fuller global business director, flexible packaging. “You have seen how H.B. Fuller adhesives and the Nordmeccanica Super Combi 3000 can help you be more innovative. And you have heard from end users today that innovation is what they are asking for.”

The symposium included demonstrations of H.B. Fuller’s 52″-wide, full production-scale Nordmeccanica laminator that was installed at its Research, Development and Technical Center in March 2010. The high speed laminator runs at production speeds, operating at up to 1,350 feet of film per minute. It can run a wide variety of typical laminating adhesives (solvent, water-based and solventless) to help converters develop new flexible packaging products, optimize processes and solve challenging problems.

H.B. Fuller invested in its new Nordmeccanica laminator “during difficult economic times, when many others are taking a step backward, or trying to simply maintain the status quo,” said H.B. Fuller CEO Michele Volpi, in his welcoming address. “We are focused on being a valued partner in the adhesives industry. We are truly passionate about taking the industry-including the flexible packaging market-to the next level.”

The symposium,  organized and moderated by Brian Wagner of  Packaging & Technology Integrated Solutions, LLC, also offered converters valuable insight and advice from some of the largest packaged good manufacturers in the world. End-user panelists presented overviews of their company’s challenges and future vision in flexible packaging, followed by a question and answer session with converters in the audience. 

Panelist Brad Rodgers, Frito-Lay research and development manager, sustainable packaging, challenged converters to focus on developing cost effective renewable and recoverable materials. “Where do we go from here and how can you, the converters, help?” Rodgers asked.

“Think differently,” recommended Jim Bougoulas, North American packaging manager for Wm. Wrigley. “We have come together in this forum and we can drive innovation through collaboration. I challenge everyone to think differently about their approach to growth.”

H.B. Fuller

Nordmeccanica NA Ltd.