Everyday individuals in this industry are working on technology that is shaping our future. From graphics to the pressroom floor, there are successes, failures, curiosities and mysteries that need to be understood and explained.
The Flexo Quality Consortium (FQC) plans to showcase some of that work being done by members of the youngest segment of our industry (some of whom aren’t even technically in the industry yet—they’re still students!) and is also staffing up for two new projects.
This year’s FQC session, “Cultivating Our Future Through Research,” will officially start Forum with a dynamic presentation from Sonoco and Clemson University on their newly formed partnership to establish a multi-disciplinary hub for industry and academic collaboration, and research to address the current and future challenges in fresh food packaging and distribution. This partnership is focused on delivering breakthroughs with the help of the entire packaging industry.
Three educators who are familiar faces at the Phoenix Challenge College Competition will highlight the Challenge program, research and execution of that research. The session will also highlight the future of flexo technology by featuring the very best and brightest research projects conducted by FTA student members: Clemson University’s Thomas Koester, the 2017 FFTA Rossini North America Flexographic Research Scholarship recipient, and Central Piedmont Community College’s Chris Teachout, the 2017 Gary Hilliard FQC Scholarship recipient!
Attendees will also hear the latest information on FTA’s involvement in industry standards, as well as ongoing FQC project updates and final reports from the High-Resolution Printing Project and Plate & Mounting Tape Optimization Project teams.
Calling All Volunteers
Are you interested in inks and coatings? Specifically, the impact of environmental factors (temperature, humidity, etc.)? What does that impact mean by segment, on print quality, printability and print productivity? We’d like to know more and are ready to get a team together to work this project. It all starts by identifying the interests and the needs of the membership. Who do we need? We need press manufacturers, anilox roll manufacturers, printers, ink makers, testing equipment suppliers and people with inquiring minds!
Opacity is another critical component of our work. Retail and CPC brand clients are concerned with the opacity or hiding power for white film and white ink on clear film, and the ability to hold their design intent and brand equity without the product showing through the packaging. ISO standards and test methods do not exist specifically for application in the printing industry. In addition, the instrumentation used in the industry varies by geometry, leaving the measured results in a state that is difficult to compare and/or communicate. We want to identify common white/black point specifications for backing materials, recommend a generic test method, create a correlation look-up table between instrument geometry, and create a best practice for Flexographic Image Reproduction Specifications & Tolerances (FIRST) and possible use in a future ISO Standard. This will take work. Are you ready to help? We need substrate manufacturers, instrument manufacturers, ink manufacturers and CPC representatives to make this all happen.
Working on an FQC project is not easy. We need leaders. Your company has to buy in. You have to commit your interest and knowledge to a team. You will need to work together on a common goal. And, you will need to bring it over the finish line!
There is nothing more rewarding than contributing toward a defined team goal through teamwork and information sharing. It makes us all better. The FQC is committed. Are you? Contact any FQC Executive Team member and begin your journey today!