Wide Web Flexo And Ebeam Inks For Short Runs Reduce Emissions

Wide Web Flexo and Ebeam Inks for Short Runs

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Digital print for packaging has gotten a lot of attention of late, and for good reason. Digital printing allows short runs, quick turnarounds, and customizable prints. Despite the many advantages of digital printing, research from a Dutch company shows that wide-web flexo is still the best solution. 

Located in the heart of the Netherlands' flower region, the family-run Dutch company was faced with a decision. Their market was shifting, demanding newer lamination and printing techniques, and they needed to decide the future of their press. The Van Kesteren brothers who run the company had seen many other printing firms switching over to digital and were tempted to do the same.

Digital does have its benefits, including:

  • No die cuts or print plates needed

  • Small runs are easy

  • High print quality and speedy turnaround

However, the Van Kesteren's weren't completely convinced that they should leave their current system. They first calculated the cost of jobs under a digital system and then calculated the cost of using their existing wide-flexo with a fixed color palette system. They looked into whether gang jobs could be more than just a viable alternative to digital. Could it even be a better solution?

The brothers were then faced with a decision to make. Switch to digital and be locked into a 7-year long deal, where their machine would have large energy demands and ink prices could skyrocket due to being under control of one company. The other option was to use wide web flexo. After considering the costs and the pros and cons of each, the brothers decided to stick with wide web flexo.

Read the full story of the Van Kesteren brothers in the Flexible Packaging Technology magazine by clicking here.

Wide Web Flexo with EB is Still the Number One Option

Even in short runs, wide web flexo is still the best option. Flexo competes with the quick turnaround and high efficiencies of digital, and adds its own unique benefits. Benefits of flexographic printing include:

  • Flexo works with a variety of ink types, include ebeam inks and curing processes. Ebeam inks require very little drying time.

  • Can print on porous and non-porous surfaces.

  • Lower energy costs.

  • EB flexo inks provide a flexo platform that reduces emissions by over 90%.

Both wide web flexo and digital printing are compatible with ebeam inks and curing processes.

It's not uncommon to have many questions about electron beam inks and curing and how they work with flexo and digital machines. ESI is the world leading in low-voltage electron beam technology. Our experts can discuss with you how EB works and how it can improve your process. 

Brent Leland