DES PLAINES, IL—Schawk, a part of the SGK Brand Solutions group of Matthews International Corporation, a leading global brand development, activation and deployment provider, announced that their ColorDrive print quality programs and tools will add support for new ISO standards 20654 (SCTV, Spot Color Tone Value) and 20616 (PQX, Print Quality Exchange) in 2018.
Managing print quality in consumer packaging across SKUs, substrates, channels and countries helps brands realize the spirit of their packaging designs and drives both consistency and perception of product quality on shelf. To accomplish this, many brands are investing in print quality programs. ColorDrive is a business built around print quality, reports Schawk, and uses an open platform that enables printers and brands to share data. Using these new standards, ColorDrive will work to provide a path to the print quality future, helping printers and brands manage quality with greater precision and transparency.
“The mission of ColorDrive is to monitor, control and improve print quality using our decades of color measurement expertise and innovative technology,” said Marc Levine, director of enterprise print quality at Schawk. “By adding support for Spot Color Tone Management, ColorDrive will help brands manage critical equity colors more effectively in the total design. Supporting ISO 20616 means that printers will be able to work in a standard way, using their preferred tools and standardized practices to measure and submit data to a variety of brand print quality programs.”
Spot colors are a key element of brand packaging. Today, spot colors are used for brand identity and are frequently integrated into the overall packaging graphics. As a result, not only is the solid color of a spot ink important, but the tone and how that ink overprints with other inks has become critically important. Now with ISO 20654, brands have a powerful way to set requirements for and track both solid ink color and tone value. SCTV’s new “color-based” method for measuring spot color tone is meant to make calibrating spot colors easier and more consistent. With SCTV, brands and their print suppliers are meant to have more control over their quality, helping them fully realize design intent.
The increasing popularity of print quality has motivated many brands to adopt programs. In today’s world, printers are often required to juggle a variety of tools in order to meet requirements for different brands. This “juggling act” creates an extra load on the printer and can compromise the efficiencies that a print quality program is intended to bring.
In response to this challenge, the industry has created ISO 20616. ISO 20616 PQX is a new method for exchanging data between web-based reporting tools, such as the ColorDrive web-based platform, and third-party quality control tools. With this new exchange format, brands will have a way to collect print quality data from any supplier around the globe. This exchange format is meant to give printers the freedom to choose the production technology that best helps them meet the brand’s requirements and gives brands the ability to harmonize data from different suppliers using different solutions.
Added Levine: “Competition on store shelves remains high and brands require transparency to their print quality data so they can make good decisions and solve problems quickly. Our role in the supply chain is to constantly innovate using new technologies, services, and products and help our partners meet their packaging performance goals.”
Levine concluded: “Industry compatibility has been the hallmark of the ColorDrive print quality platform and its approach to print quality. Today, ColorDrive already collects data from a wide variety of QC tools by X-Rite, Techkon, Bodoni and Flexicon. These new standards align precisely with our own approach of giving printers the freedom to choose their own technology partners and solutions.”