Scotland-based CV Labels has become the first converter in the UK install a Mark Andy Digital One as it adds digital label printing to its offering.
CV Labels produces pharmaceutical, healthcare and medical labels. It moved into the pharmaceutical market in 2008 following a major decline in Scotland’s electronics sector.
Robert Veitch, CV Labels co-founder and owner, commented: ‘While we were able to grow our business in the electronics field, the pharmaceutical industry is far more stable – but it does require strict process controls with a highly trained work force.’
This includes strict GMP processes. CV Labels is certified to PS 9000:2016 from the Pharmaceutical Quality Group (PQG), ISO 9001:2015 from BSI for GMP and UL Certification for safety in product manufacturing.
The decision to move into digital print was largely prompted by the ever-shortening run lengths that CV Labels is experiencing, with some jobs requiring as few as 100-200 meters of substrate. With customers requiring quality digital labels for pharma, Veitch knew he needed to look closely at what the market had to offer.
The servo-driven Mark Andy Digital One has a 330mm web width and can handle a variety of substrates, without the need to use the full web width. It prints CMYK at 1200dpi at speeds up to 19m/min, while its flexo station can add spot color, varnishing, laminating or cold foil, before die-cutting and slitting. It is fitted with an air-cooled UV LED lamp, and requires only a single-phase power supply.
‘We looked at four or five different manufacturers, but chose Mark Andy because of its history and commitment to the label industry. Everything about the Digital One press was already well proven, and we liked the fact that we could print and convert in one pass.’
CV Labels carried out extensive print trials on existing jobs with all of the manufacturers under consideration. The press sale was confirmed at Labelexpo Europe 2017, with the machine installed in November last year. To date the company has run PP, standard label papers and light card through the press on run lengths of 30-900m. Most recently, PP with a metallized backing has been in use.
The Mark Andy Digital One press is part of a major investment program in technology at the company. It has extended its headquarters in Irvine, Scotland as it seeks to double sales by 2022. A new 7,000 sq ft production hall dedicated to digital print has been established, which will complement its flexo output, said Veitch. It has also invested in EyeC Proofiler inspection technology.
Veitch commented: ‘We see the crossover point between flexo and digital at around 1,000m, depending on the job, but the capability of going to 330mm wide on the Digital One from 280mm on our flexo lines means that we have an increased capability, and our MIS software gives us a hands-on view of costings, which takes all the guesswork out of job planning.’
CV Labels plans to make further investments in digital printing as part of its growth ambitions.