The Ins and Outs of Narrow Web Label Printing
Mary Sullivan, director of global marketing at Mark Andy Inc., provides her expertise on the narrow web labeling market in this Q&A feature.
Q: What are some of your current offerings for narrow web label printing?
A: Mark Andy offers various models of narrow web presses to the label industry, the most popular and best-selling of which is the Performance series. This series, when introduced to the label and package printing markets, revolutionized the output and performance of flexo printing. The uniquely designed print deck has proven to drastically reduce set up and changeover time and waste, as well as dramatically improve converter profitability. There are three models available in the Performance series line: P3, P5 and P7, varying in price and capability and including the most advanced servo automation technology. In addition to the Performance series line of presses, Mark Andy also offers Versa Max, a mid-web solution which is ideal for film and flexible packaging, with an extreme advantage when it comes to shorter runs.
In addition to inline flexo offerings, Mark Andy also recently introduced the Digital series. This is a truly hybrid label-printing solution, offering converters the short run convenience of digital inkjet printing combined with the flexibility of inline decoration and an array of converting capabilities, all in a single pass workflow.
Q: Have you seen any new label printing techniques lately?
A: We are seeing changes more and more among narrow web converters. A few notable trends include:
• Expanded content or booklet labels, specifically for pharma and nutraceutical applications where more information needs to be included on a (sometimes) smaller label. Extended content technology also encourages further consumer interaction with
• Expanded or extended gamut – extended use of up to a 7-color gamut and gray scale screening that achieves more accurate PMS matching and photo quality images.
• High-impact decoration techniques create retail shelf differentiation – foils, screens, full HD print, effect varnishes and laminations take label and package design to a whole new level.
• Substrates are evolving, leaning towards sustainability including thinner liners and PET liner options
• Augmented reality and other smart label techniques are being incorporated more and more to develop a connection between consumer and brand.
Q: Does your company have any new developments in the works this year?
A: Mark Andy will continue to develop our award-winning Performance series press platform to reach larger segments of narrow web printers, expanding their access to this productive technology. We will also focus further on our mid-web flexible packaging offering, Versa Max, to ensure faster changeovers and enhanced lamination capabilities in an in-line platform.
Q: What do you believe is currently missing from this sector of the flexible packaging industry?
A: When we look at the industry, it’s not necessarily about what is missing, but identifying where ‘real’ opportunities can be found. As we pursue our mission to drive profitability for the label and package converter, we continue to uncover new perspectives and findings by which to develop and evolve workflows of print technologies and pressrooms. Our goal is to find solutions that allow a printer or converter access to these opportunities. We are eager to learn from the entrepreneurial spirit of the industry, which we believe will continue long into the future.
Mark Andy Inc.
(636) 532-4433; www.markandy.com