TCL Packaging and Creation Reprographics have collaborated to install Asahi Photoproducts' AWP flexo plates in a bid to migrate from gravure production to flexography for food and non-food flexible packaging.
Asahi's water-washable AWP plates employ pinning technology to achieve a clean ink transfer, by preventing ink accumulation on the plate surfaces and shoulders in screen areas.
The pinning technology prevents liquid flow by using low plate surface tension. The ink forms a globule, with a large contact angle and high pinning point, allowing a cleaner and more homogeneous ink transfer from plate to substrate, helping flexographic printers meet the increasing quality demands of customers.
The AWP plate has the capacity to print down to 2%-3% using classical round dot screening. It uses screening technologies to reproduce a vignette fade to zero.
This will allow packaging firms to easily migrate from offset or gravure production to flexographic printing.
TCL production manager Dean Langford said: "We initially assessed about five different flexographic plates, but when we began working with Creation Reprographics, we were really impressed with the quality standard they could deliver on the Asahi AWP™ plate solution.
"Working with our repro team, Creation Reprographics took two eight-colour gravure jobs, did extensive colour management and fingerprinting work and delivered them in five colours on our new Uteco line investment, with outstanding performance according to our customer."
Asahi Photoproducts, which operates as a subsidiary of Asahi Kasei Corporation, is involved in flexographic photopolymer plate development.
UK-based TCL operates a 70,000ft2 facility with 55 employees where it manufactures printed packaging films.