UNI Packaging to increase UK market share with £1.5m investment

By Jenny Eagle

- Last updated on GMT

The Titan SR9-DT Dual Turret Slitter
The Titan SR9-DT Dual Turret Slitter

Related tags Hp indigo Digital press Printing

UNI Packaging has invested £1.5m ($1.4m) in its St. Helens, Lancashire manufacturing site, including a Titan SR9-DT Dual Turret Slitter, to increase its UK market share in the short run, flexible market.

The SR9 is 1650mm wide with capacity up to 700mm rewind reel diameters on both 76 and 152mm cores. The slitter has an automatic knife positioning system with 30+ Tidland rotating knives and can process various materials to a minimum slit width of 25mm on both cores.

Cheese, coffee, seafood, biscuits, pasta

It includes an automatic electronic slit reel unloading system to meet expanding production requirements.

Rod Entwistle, MD, UNI Packaging UK, which makes flexible packaging for cheese, coffee, seafood, biscuits, pasta, and confectionery, told BakeryandSnacks, it is also installing a HP Indigo 20000 digital press at the end of the year.

This will be the group’s third HP Indigo 20000 digital press​, creating momentum in its digital product, Digiflex. It has two others in Fontenay le Comte, France.

The investment in UK manufacturing has strategic importance to the group​,” said Entwistle.

We have a growing market share in this country and with the resources across the group, we can operate on a different level to other flexible packaging companies and the ability to address the growing trend for short runs, fast response times and high print quality​.

Investments at the St. Helens site will provide the group with additional capacity at a time of ongoing expansion​.”

UNI Packaging St. Helens announced it was rebranding from Arteb Printing in January this year.

The 10,000 sq ft plant is being reorganised to create a ‘logical sequence to its manufacturing workflow’ with a print and lamination hall, film curing facility and slitting hall.

UNI Packaging has six production sites across France and provides flexible packaging technology including: Gravure, flexographic and digital printing through Digiflex, vacuum pouch and stand-up pouch manufacture, lamination, laser scoring, co-extrusion and logistics.

Packaging Innovations, Birmingham NEC

The company decided to invest in the HP Indigo 20000 Digital press after success with start-up company Yooji in Agen, France​, which makes frozen products for babies, using a HP Indigo WS6600 digital press last year.

Franck Caresmel, director, UNI Packaging said at the time the advantages of UNI-Digiflex is its fast turnaround, no printing plates, personalisation/sequential printing, consumer testing and research and regional promotions.

Digital print has been around for a long time for labels and paper printing but not in flexible packaging for that long. It was available around five years ago but the quality was not the same​,” he said.

The quality now is good if not better than gravure, depending on the design. The HP Indigo 20000 digital press targets a different market for clients with specific needs, which is not replicated in conventional print​.

UNI-Digiflex has given us the opportunity to educate our customers on this new technology. They can launch their products more quickly, it’s less complex, it saves time to market, it can have the same designs on one roll, and can react to feedback on social media faster​.”

UNI Packaging will be exhibiting at Packaging Innovations, Birmingham NEC from February 24-25, 2016.

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