Sussex, Wisconsin, USA – Graphic Packaging International (GPI), one of the world’s leading paperboard packaging converters, has reduced makeready waste by 50 percent at its Perry, Georgia (USA) plant, after installing QuadTech’s Color Control System with SpectralCam on the company’s manroland CARTOMAN web offset press.
The refurbishment of the 16-year old roll-fed offset press enables GPI at Perry to deliver to exacting standards of consistency and accuracy demanded by global beverage industry clients, such as Anheuser-Busch InBev, Pepsi and Coca-Cola – while increasing productivity.
Thanks to the Color Control System with SpectralCam, GPI accurately reproduces unique spot colors to target aim point values. Spectral data from each patch of the color bar is evaluated to quickly recognize and remedy deviations from color specifications, immediately issuing color adjustment requests to the ink keys. The fast response means desired color targets are achieved faster at the beginning of the print run, and held consistent throughout the entire production.
Makeready is further simplified thanks to software that automatically adjusts press’s register and color control settings when a change in repeat length is necessary. This cuts makeready time, especially as operators must frequently switch between the 26” and 37” cylinders that feature heavily on the production schedule at the Perry plant.
Data Central, QuadTech’s user-friendly instant auditing and reporting software, provides numerous performance analyses, including print curve, L*a*b* and densitometric analysis, among others. The software is integrated into the company’s IT server, giving all staff access to information, and allowing corrective measures to be taken at the first sign of defects.
Staff from QuadTech’s engineering and service group worked with GPI for several months to tailor the system to the client’s press environment and job requirements. One result of the collaboration was a custom color library containing the L*a*b* target aim point values for spot colors. These target values can be imported to SpectralCam from GPI’s color management software. Target aim points and related job data is immediately recalled at the start of each job, eliminating the time-consuming task of data re-entry. This results in boosted productivity, as repeat orders make up a great proportion of GPI Perry’s work.
Operators were able to use the press confidently and proficiently as soon as the installation was completed, following training sessions on QuadTech’s extranet-based tutorial program, Hands-On Lab, which enabled operators to familiarize themselves with the ICON-based user screens.
“With margins under pressure from uncertain raw materials prices and high levels of competition, it’s essential for a printer to reduce waste to a minimum,” said GPI’s Bill Ruttan, Web Offset Area Lead. “Thanks to their technical expertise and smooth project management skills, QuadTech proved to be the perfect partner to help us address this challenge. The resulting installation dramatically boosts the competitiveness of our existing press.”
Employing over 15,000 at over 50 plants worldwide, GPI is a leading provider of paperboard packaging for a wide range of consumer retail goods. The company is one of the largest producers of folding cartons.