Dscoop recap: exploring flexible packaging

[embed]https://youtu.be/w4Jv6ZXvOiE[/embed] The S-One Labels & Packaging team spent the week attending Dscoop Edge Fusion, a virtual event for HP Indigo digital press users in the label, flexible packaging, and commercial print markets. We joined more than 50 exhibitors and 3,500 attendees over four days for networking, education, and seeing the latest technology. Over in the S-OneLP booth, we highlighted our sustainable solutions from our recyclable ReTreve™ line and our bio-based ReEarth™ portfolio. We also featured an interview with Dura-Pack, a leader in the cannabis packaging space and a valued customer of S-OneLP. S-OneLP Vice President of Sales, Tom Hauenstein, presented live on getting into flexible packaging, which can be viewed here. As more brands are moving away from rigid containers, we see flexible packaging as a growing market, that’s already a $131 billion industry. Digital production accounts for only 1 to 2 percent of the current flexible packaging volume. However, as SKUs increase, as more brands realize the benefits of customization, and as craft brands continue to play alongside the big players, we see this segment as going nowhere but up. The flexible packaging market comes with less competition and higher margins, so it’s no surprise that label converters are targeting this space. Many label companies are using their existing narrow web presses to produce small format pouches, sachets, and stick packs, while even more are eyeing HP Indigo’s 30-inch wide 20000 digital press, or its newest 25K digital press, for entry into this market. The manufacturer says there are 250 Indigo 20000 digital presses installed globally. But as we heard many converters say during Dscoop, “printing is the easy part.” It’s the converting and pouching process that created an equipment and skills gap for many label converters diversifying into flexible packaging. “It takes a while to master pouching, but there are toll pouching companies out there that can help you,” Hauenstein said in his presentation. “This is highly recommended to build a book of pouching business: Outsource first, then bring it in-house once the ROI makes sense financially.” Hauenstein covered the main forms of finishing – or protecting the ink on the film’s surface. In the session, he discusses adhesive lamination, extrusion lamination, thermal lamination, and eBeam coating, and discussed at length the benefits and challenges of each. S-OneLP offers systems for thermal lamination, via our Cellcoat T-Series, and eBeam with our CatPak™ system. In another Dscoop session, Tom O'Brien, President of Accuflex, discussed the environmental benefits of eBeam with the CatPak system. EBeam allows converters to lose a layer of laminating material. "We’re really glad we went with eBeam," O'Brien said. "Upfront it costs more, but if you look at the sustainability story in flexible packaging, one of the easiest ways to tell that story is to eliminate a web of laminating film, which we’re able to do with the eBeam. We're also doing work with bio-based films. It was the right choice for us." Dscoop brought attendees to a virtual visit of the Packaging Lab, another valued S-OneLP customer who also discussed the benefits of our low minimum orders, short lead times, as well as the quality of our films. Hauenstein was thrilled to hear positive feedback from valued customers on a high-profile platform like Dscoop. “We offer the equipment, films, and coatings necessary for the label converter to have immediate success in the flexible packaging market,” Hauenstein said. To learn more about our products, or to get started on your flexible packaging journey, contact an S-OneLP expert today!
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