By Olivia Cahoon
Part 2 of 2
Packaging manufacturers convert to digital print technology to provide short turnaround times for cosmetic, food, household products, and pharmaceutical industries. One such manufacturer is Art&Servei, established in 1987 in Barcelona, Spain.
Art&Servei manufactures packaging, point of purchase (POP) displays, and graphic products for communications and marketing industries. With 22 employees, the company offers pre-printing, printing, die cutting/gumming, and finishing capabilities.
Art&Servei manufactures a variety of non-permanent POP displays with offset printing and UV printing capabilities. Its showcase displays are made with pressed cardboard, plastic, polyester, or a combination of materials. For POP display molding and stand stoppers, Art&Servei prints on PVC or polypropylene.
The manufacturer also specializes in brand and product enhancements with cardboard, plastic, and polyester materials. Common orders include direct printing onto PVC or polypropylene. Designed to support communication campaigns, Art&Servei’s promotional materials include bookmarks, calenders, coasters, collectibles, rulers, semi-rigid plastic bags, and table sets.
Its packaging division creates custom packaging to protect and advertise client products in plastic, cardboard, and paperboard. Plastic packaging includes folded packaging and cylindrical boats. Cylindrical boat packaging is commonly used for foods like dry pasta, desserts, and candy. Foldable packaging is popular for displaying electronic devices and other products suitable for translucent packaging.
Art&Servei’s custom packaging offering includes features like automatic and semi-automatic background and secure anti-theft locks. According to the company’s website, custom packaging features allow Art&Servei to obtain self-service boxes with a lid and base, exclusive designs, and cases with windows.
In 2016, the manufacturer invested in its first digital press, the Fujifilm North America Corporation Acuity Select X28 with six colors, white, and varnish. Designed for fine detail and high-resolution applications, the Acuity Select X20 Series includes an 8×10-foot print area for oversized substrates or dual 4×8-foot boards.
“A few years ago, I started looking seriously at the evolution of different technologies and realized that digital print was where most development was happening,” says Jordi París, founder, Art&Servei. After researching digital printing technologies, the company decided on the Fujifilm Acuity Select X28. “While our customers were not specifically demanding this investment from us, we knew that with the right digital press, there was significant growth potential.”
The Acuity Select X20 Series features up to eight color channels including white varnish. It offers 1,200 dpi or greater on rigid, flexible, and roll media. After investing in the press, Art&Servei studied the market to find projects to keep the device busy. “We studied the market carefully and saw consistent growing demand for shorter runs—sometimes for market testing or from customers who make a variety of personalized and specialized products,” explains París.
Before the Acuity Select X28, Art&Servei offset printed its packaging products. “Now with the Acuity Select X28, we can offer a much faster service to our customers and free up our offset machines for more efficient production,” says París. “We also make much more accurate and much higher quality prototypes for existing customers, giving them a far clearer idea of what their finished product will look like.”
With offset and digital printing technology in house, Art&Servei’s clients include end users, printing service suppliers, agencies, and studios. The company focuses on the plastic, polyester, and special materials sector.
“Our existing customers are delighted with the extra short-run services we can now offer and, through recommendations they have passed on, we attract new customers as well,” admits París. “At first we were only running the machine for two hours a day—making prototypes exclusively—but now we run a full shift every day as word gets around about what we can do.”
The manufacturer’s finishing department includes capabilities for film wrapping, UV selective varnishes, engraving, and gluing. In 2016, Art&Servei introduced the Zünd G3 L-3200 to its digital department. The G3 L-3200 has a 70×125-inch cutting area and offers tools for graphics, leather, and packaging. According to the company’s website, the Zünd offers the most innovative digital technology on the market while providing support up to five centimeters thick.
Digital printing equipment allows manufacturers to produce a range of packaging on a variety of substrates like polyester, plastic, and cardboard. With digital manufacturing techniques, businesses like Art&Servei take advantage of faster job setup and shorter runs to keep production efficient.
Apr2018, Industrial Print Magazine