Happy Independence Day 2010!
Nanotechnology coating hikes barrier properties, keeps food films clear
A new plasma/vacuum roll-coating process reportedly raises the water-vapor and oxygen barriers for a wide range of plastic food-packaging films while also keeping the finished material transparent. Developed by researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Electron Beam and Plasma Technology (Fraunhofer FEP) in Dresden, Germany, the method can coat a nanometer-thin layer of a natural oxide onto common plastic films such as PET, PP or PLA at speeds of several thousand sq meters/hr. Along with extending food-product freshness, the new coating is transparent, allowing consumers to see the product (unlike traditional metallized films).
“The nanometer-thin coating helps conserve resources, since the barrier can be 100X times thinner than traditional layers while retaining the same barrier properties,” says Nicolas Schiller, head of the business unit Coating of Flexible Products at the Fraunhofer FEP. “(It) eliminates chlorine, a chemistry traditionally used in the production of polymeric barriers.”
Fraunhofer FEP collaborated with Applied Materials, Inc., which provided the TopMet Clear 2450 vacuum roll coater (shown above), and Biofilm S.A., a BOPP-film maker. The first plant to use this new plasma-assisted, vacuum web-coating technology in production is Biofilm’s site in Mexico. More info
Specialty Tape & Label purchased by I.D. Images
The Chicago-based label converter’s assets were acquired yesterday by I.D. Images in the second strategic purchase by the Brunswick, OH, company in the past year. Enhanced capabilities of the merged converters include digital printing as well as multi-web handling for combination forms, coupons and integrated cards. The buy also enlarges I.D. Images’ distribution footprint to meet growing demand for Variable Information Labeling media products in the region.
Private-equity firm, managers acquire Gateway Packaging
Saw Mill Capital Partners LP, together with the senior management team of Gateway Packaging Co. LLC, acquired the flexible-packaging printing and converting firm on June 22. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. “Saw Mill is a forward- looking, growth-oriented partner that brings not only capital but also new strategic resources to accelerate our growth plans,” says Roger Miller, Gateway founder/CEO. Headquartered in Granite City, IL, Gateway Packaging designs and converts multi-wall paper and plastic bags, pouches, rollstock and labels.
RockTenn raises prices on coated recycled paperboard
The Norcross, GA, substrate provider will hike prices $40 per ton on its CLASSIC NEWSTM, ANGELCOTE® and MILLMASK® coated recycled paperboard products, effective with shipments on Aug. 2. This follows a price increase announced yesterday on all RockTenn containerboard grades.
Tetra Pak to sell 3 billion FSC-labeled beverage cartons in Germany
The Swiss liquid-packaging converter continued its drive to promote Forest Stewardship Council™ (FSC)-certified materials by starting to offer 3.3 billion beverage cartons bearing the FSC label to customers in Germany last month. This represents about 50% of the annual production of Tetra Pak cartons in Germany.