The label engineers and designers at Alpine Packaging have relied on conventional printing technologies for some 44 years. But this month they are seizing opportunity and building on their long-term relationship with Anderson & Vreeland with the addition of a Screen Truepress Jet L350UV inkjet press.
“We’d been looking at digital technology to see how it would fit our operation,” recounts Jan Lehigh, company President. “So when our customers began asking for digital printing and said we’d get more of their business if we had digital capabilities, we knew it was time to bring in a digital press to compliment our 15 flexo presses.”
The tire industry has long been a mainstay of Alpine’s customer base. In recent years, those labels have increased in complexity, the need for color, and run lengths have changed. In addition, Alpine’s expansion into prime labels and poly bags has increased overall production volumes while simultaneously adding pressure for shorter runs and just-in-time delivery. New opportunities in vertical markets and the food industry are also demanding shorter runs and other changes that aren’t always practical on Alpine’s flexo presses.
“Digital printing answers these needs,” says Jill Grunst, Alpine’s Secretary and Treasurer. “Being label engineers presents many unique requirements and demands a wide range of substrates. We needed a digital press that could support all these needs”
“The Screen L350 UV gives us the flexibility we need to support our customers’ changing needs,” explains Bob Peredic, Print Products Manager. “Many customers have jobs of less than 1000 feet and use a wide range of substrates. A digital press lets us do those jobs without a lot of makeready while shortening delivery time.”
The new press is being installed this month at Alpine’s facility in North Versailles, PA, a few miles southeast of Pittsburgh. The installation will be supported by Anderson & Vreeland’s Technologies Team as well as Screen USA personnel, all of whom will be onsite to ensure Alpine’s staff gains a complete understanding of the new press.
“From file handling to color management to operator training, we want to make the learning curve as short as possible,” notes Jessica Harrell, Technologies Manager at Anderson & Vreeland, who will be onsite at Alpine for the installation.
“We understand all the challenges that come with the installation of a digital press,” says Rob Baker, A&V National Accounts Manager and an expert on digital press implementation. “Our technical teams are a clear differentiator because they help ensure every customer is up and running with their new press, producing sellable labels as quickly as possible.”
With Alpine Packaging’s first digital press about to come on line, Jan Lehigh is looking further ahead. “Flexo and digital technologies compliment each other well and digital will open new markets and opportunities for us. This is definitely just the beginning.”