Leading UK flexible packaging manufacturer, Skymark, claims that supplier collaboration is now the key to future innovation in packaging and that Drupa 2016 was evidence of a change in the market.
Paul Neath, Skymark director, said: “Our team took time out to visit Drupa 2016 in Düsseldorf, Germany in May and the key observation we made from the trip was the increase in the number of packaging and ancillary suppliers that were working together to create truly unique innovation for their clients. Drupa has traditionally been a big packaging show but the number of new innovations demonstrated, emerging from packaging sector players working together, was astonishing.
“Take Dow Chemical and their initiative with Nordmeccanica on SYMBIEX™, their new ultra-fast curing adhesive technology, that when combined with the Duplex SL One Shot™ lamination line, enables slitting in 90 minutes and conversion efficiency improvements for the entire supply chain. This was an impressive collaboration. Dow had not just produced another lamination adhesive but combined it with the necessary machine technology to gain traction and speed to market.”
Recent examples of packaging company collaborations include LINPAC with Graphic Packaging UK developing a range of patisserie packs from carton trays with PET lids, which saw two sets of design teams collaborating on their key materials to deliver a total solution to market in record time. STI Group has also teamed up with Sealed Air Corporation to develop a packaging range based on Sealed Air‘s Korrvu® Lok technology. The range allows products of different sizes, shapes and weights to be securely shipped in the same packaging solution. A corrugated board inlay is glued to a high-performance film, which is stretched around the product in two steps to virtually suspend it inside the packaging providing protection against shocks and breakage during shipment.
Skymark has also begun working with a number of other packaging companies to deliver the complete pack solution and seamless multisubstrate brand management support that brand owners are looking for. Working with Smurfit Kappa Inspirepac, on a recent Disney wipes range for Kimberly Clark, Skymark and Inspirepac collaborated to optimise the retail ready corrugate and flexible pack graphics and won a Silver Award at the recent EFIA Print Awards in March as a result.
Neath continues: “No longer can companies offer a simple pack solution and expect to gain sales. Brand owners are seeking pack differentiation, consistency, unique innovation and speed to market. By working together with the other parties in the chain, we are able to offer a more inclusive approach to new product development, get the solutions right first time and get to market more quickly as a result.”