THE BIG OFFSET PRESSES and the technology-laden digital presses get all the glory. These big ticket items, the production engines, put out the pages that keep the print industry in business. But the inks, toners, plates, paper, and other substrates used on these machines are every bit as important as big iron and the glamour of new technology, and are as essential to printing as the very ideas that ultimately generate print jobs.

So while the glory goes to the machines, the supplies, substrates and consumables are the oft-forgotten heroes.... except at trade shows like Graph Expo and here at We urge you to visit the vendors below to see how their solutions can make a difference in your business. Whether you need a specialized substrate for an unusual application or want to learn about the advances in toner and ink technology, GraphExpo is the place where it all comes together under one roof.

Remember, since this is an early show preview not every company exhibiting in this category was prepared to share information. We urge you to check back often for the latest breaking news and new product announcements. Here’s a glimpse of what the leading paper, supplies and consumables vendors will be showing and doing in Chicago.

Enovation (Booth 3831)
Enovation Graphic Systems, a subsidiary of Fuji Photo Film U.S.A. will have a kiosk in the Fuji Graphic Systems booth. Enovation is not "showing" a specific product, but rather reinforcing its brand and building awareness in the graphic arts communications industry. The kiosk will have a live Internet connection to Enovation’s new web site.

Enovation supplies products and services for all sectors of the graphic communications industry include:
- Electronic Pre-press equipment
- Computer workstations and software
- Fileservers and networking solutions
- Consumables and hardware for offset lithography and digital imaging
- Pressroom supplies and chemicals including ,
- Press, post-press and finishing equipment

Flint Ink (Booth 0825)
Ink is both a business and a science for Flint Ink, which operates an 86,000 sq. ft. research center in Ann Arbor, Mich. where more than 100 chemists, engineers, physicists and technicians pursue the development of inks and coatings. Among other technical breakthroughs, Flint has pioneered the formulation of single-fluid ink (SFI), a patented fluid chemistry that keeps the non-image areas of printing plates free of ink without the use of water.

Flint’s product offerings include conventional and specialty inks for virtually every printing application. At Graph Expo, Flint will present its complete line of quality inks and coatings for commercial, heatset, digital, publication and package printing.

"Special attention," says the company, will be focused on:

XICURE™ -synthetic UV Ink Systems.
XICURE™-synthetic ink systems are energy-curable offset UV systems offering superior adhesion and scratch resistance for use on plastic and other non-porous substrates. Applications include phone, credit and frequent flyer cards; tags; P-O-P displays; signs; children’s books; game pieces; maps; and "agri-spikes."

Van Son Holland Ink (Booth 2271)
Since its establishment in the U.S. in 1953, Van Son Holland Ink Corp. has focused mostly on products for small offset presses—a market now being overtaken by copiers and digital document reproduction systems. Its Dutch parent company, however, has always served the large-press segment in the rest of the world, and now the U.S. operation has begin to address the bigger picture as well. Having launched a dedicated sales force for medium and large commercial printers six months ago, Van Son comes to Graph Expo eager to talk about its portfolio of inks and ink accessories for printing operations of all kinds and sizes. Items of particular interest at the Van Son stand will be:

QuickMix System
Van Son says that this mixing and metering system gives plants with medium and large commercial presses a precise, reliable way to mix Pantone® colors from its Quickson series inks. The system is built around the IDS 2022 ink-dosage unit, a compact, carousel-like device fed from tubes of Quickson inks. Dosage settings can be adjusted from coarse to fine, and ink waste is minimized thanks to the pneumatically sealed tube packaging. The IDS 2022 can be linked to an ink formulating and weighing unit driven by Formulator Integra mixing software, a Pantone®-licensed application for precision color mixing. The Formulator software also can store and manage ink formulas for a large number of jobs, according to Pantone.

Aqua Base Plus Flexo Inks
No newcomer to flexography, Pantone developed its first water-based flexo ink more than 15 years ago. Today the Aqua Base Plus family comprises four special-purpose inks that are suitable for all types of flexo presses and plates. Each is available in process and basic Pantone® colors. Aqua Base Plus ET is for coated and uncoated label stock; Aqua Base Plus EV is for envelope stock; Aqua Base Plus AH is for coated and uncoated paper stock; and Aqua Base Plus TP is for thermal paper stock.

Xerox (Booth 1016)
Part of the real estate in the third largest booth at the show will be new substrates and consumables from Xerox. Along with the highly anticipated GraphExpo showing of Xerox's iGen3, The Document Company is bringing a variety of substrates to the market support the range of creative applications for which the iGen3 was developed. Xerox will be showcasing the media and applications created or qualified by Xerox labs. In addition, Xerox document supplies demonstrated at GraphExpo will include business cards, labels, transparencies, tabs, binding products, and customized products for digital printing.

XPEDX (Booth #4824)
Learn where digital workflow is going..... xpedx offers film, plotters, plate setters and digital asset management tools. The company designs and integrates complete electronic prepress and color management systems including high-speed networking, servers, scanners and proofing equipment. At Booth #4824, you will see an entire digital workflow setup transforming an electronic file to printed piece right before your eyes. xpedx’s offer at the show is, "Let us help guide you through the digital future today."

* Pitman
and Printnation won’t have their own booths at the show, but will be very visible at Agfa (#3823), Artwork Systems (#4808), DuPont (#4848), Kodak Polychrome Graphics (#4406), and Screen. (#3400).

Paper Vendors:

Blue Ridge Paper - Booth #3663
Headquartered in Canton, N.C., Blue Ridge Paper Products Inc. is a leading producer of envelope and specialty papers and coated bleached board for food service packaging. Blue Ridge has eight plants in seven states, including a pulp and paper mill in Canton, N.C., an extrusion coating plant in Waynesville, N.C., and six DairyPak converting plants in Athens, Ga.; Clinton, Iowa; Fort Worth, Texas; Morristown, N.J.; Olmsted Falls, Ohio; and Richmond, Virginia.

e.Paper Company - Booth #2556
e.Paper Company opened in 1993 as a division of Gould Paper Co. e.Paper services the forms, tag and label, narrow web flexo, direct mail, specialty and fine paper industries in web and sheetfed with products ranging from papers to plastics.

Fox River Paper Company - Booth #2467
Fox River will be featuring several new products, including the NEW Coronado SST, Confetti, Crushed Leaf and Capitol Bond, all of which have some exciting new additions to the lines. Ask about small sheet count cartons and internet purchasing when visiting their booth. Fox River has recently updated their private watermark offering and has a new brochure to outline the improvements and minimums. Fox River is the leader in watermarking and offers a customized private watermark for as little 10,000 sheets.

Mohawk Paper Mills, Inc. - Booth #2573
Mohawk Paper Mills is a privately owned manufacturer of fine printing papers located near Albany, New York. The company has two mills and three paper machines, with a capacity of 100,000 tons. It manufactures a mix of highly focused text and cover grades for commercial printing and papers that have been specially formatted for short run digital color printing.

Stora Enso North America - Booth #3231
An integrated forest products company producing magazine papers, newsprint, fine papers, packaging boards and wood products. In 2001 Stora Enso had sales of EUR 13.5 billion and approximately 15 million tons of annual paper and board production capacity. The Company employs 43,000 in more than 40 countries and its shares are listed in Helsinki, New York and Stockholm exchanges.

Stora Enso works mainly in the business-to-business environment. Customers are large and small publishers, printing houses and merchants as well as the packaging, joinery and construction industries worldwide. The Company pursues an environmental and social responsibility policy that is committed to developing business towards ecological, social and economic sustainability.