The new machine was inaugurated at the company’s Thane plant on 23 April 2018 by Suresh Gupta, chairman, Dr Arup Basu, managing director, and Amar Chhajed, president – labelling business at Huhtamaki PPL; Alon Bar-Shany, vice president and general manager and Oran Sokol, director and general manager of Indigo Division at HP.
Installed in January 2018, the new machine has been a driving force behind Coca-Cola’s Share A Coke campaign.
Speaking to PrintWeek India, Amar Chhajed, president – labelling business at Huhtamaki PPL said, “It is an advantage to have a sound customer with us as we made this significant investment. This investment should be seen as Huhtamaki’s stepping stone into digital printing. And this plunge into digital comes with a much bigger commitment and confidence.”
Explaining the complexities on the Share A Coke label printing job, Chhajed said, “The variable data printing for the job comprised of 32 relationships, 12 different languages, and five descriptors to each relationship, which summed up to 3,000 artworks getting printed simultaneously.”
Labels have been created in 12 languages, which are English, Hindi, Tamil, Telugu, Kannada, Bengali, Malayalam, Oriya, Assamese, Gujarati, Punjabi and Marathi. Each relationship is accompanied by an exciting descriptor, such as Grandad (Old School. Yet Cool), Grandma (Scolds me. Spoils me), Daddy (My teacher. My friend), Mom (Above the rest. Simply the best) Son (My devil. My angel), Sis (Supermodel. Super role model), Bro (Troublemaker. Merrymaker), Boss (Pushes me. Promotes me) and nicknames including BFF (Laughs with me. Cries with me), Bae (Bugs me. Hugs me).
Suresh Gupta, chairman, Huhtamaki PPL, said, “This company has risen by being a pioneer in almost all the technologies in flexible packaging right from shrink labels in 1992. The HP Indigo 20000 is first in India. As compared to other flexible package printing technologies, Indigo is a zero-waste technology. Secondly, there are customers who need packaging just-in-time, say 30 different artworks to be printed in 24 hours time. We have a solution in form of this machine.”
Huhtamaki PPL’s investment into HP Indigo 20000 press and deployment to execute the Share A Coke campaign defies the conventional wisdom that digital printing is best suited to short-run applications with very limited opportunities in packaging.
“We will see rapid growth in the way big as well as small brands leverage the marketing opportunities that digital package printing brings,” added Gupta.
The 762mm-wide press is capable of speeds of 42m/min in EPM (enhanced-productivity mode), 32m/min in four-colour mode or 25m/min in five-colour mode. It prints at maximum high-definition imaging (HDI) resolution of 2,438dpi and takes a range of substrates between 10 to 250 microns thick, sized between 400mm and 762mm.
Commenting on Huhtamaki PPL’s feat, Alon Bar-Shany, VP and GM of the Indigo division at HP, said, “This is a milestone in the Indian packaging market. Today, there is a capability in India to deliver high-quality versioned, personalised, secured, just-in-time, packaging pretty much of any nature by the company that is a leader, not only in India but also globally. Our customers globally continue to grow double-digit in a world which is looking for differentiation and trying to understand that not everything can be tapped into by only social media; printing and packaging have its own emotional value. It’s a business if executed well can be a strong part of an emotional marketing mix.”