ProductWatch: Print Dynamic’s Sterilisation indicator ink
The indicator ink was recognised by the Indian Flexible Packaging and Folding Carton Manufacturers Association and won the award for innovation category during the IFCA Star Awards. WhatPackaging? discovers more about these inks
03 Oct 2022 | By Abhay Avadhani
WhatPackaging? (WP): What does it do?
Print Dynamic (PD): These inks fall into the category of indicator inks. The ink confirms the successful and effective completion of an exposure process to a sterilant by a chromatic transition .
WP: Explain what it's suitable for?
PD: Sterilisation indicator inks are required to verify whether a material (labels, pouches or tapes) has been adequately exposed to a sterilisation process to ensure that all pathogens are neutralised. Sterilisation is a process that eliminates all forms of life and other biological agents and can be carried out through heat ,chemicals, irradiation, high pressure and filtration.
Articles that have direct application on humans and animals are subjected to sterilisation including drugs, surgical equipment, medical devices, nutraceuticals, food and packaging of food products. The methodology is to confirm by a visual indication that the sterilisation process has been successfully accomplished The inks are used to print labels which can be affixed onto any article which is sought to be sterilised.
WP: When was it launched and what market is it aimed at?
PD: We launched it recently after all successful trials. The market we aim for is the entire medical sector covering all hospitals, dental clinics, medical universities and institutes and the food packaging sector. Sterilisation indicator labels are mandatory in more than 100 countries worldwide and the market has the potential to keep increasing.
WP: Which kind of raw materials does it deploy?
PD: The materials are proprietary formulations and basically organic chemicals which are safe, non toxic and no harm to either the print process or the end user
WP: How was the technology adapted by print firms in India?
PD: We are working with just one potential company who will print and market labels nationwide and worldwide. Also who will market our ink exclusively to those who are already engaged in the business of printing and selling labels with inks sourced from other ink companies.
WP: How does it differ from similar products in the market?
PD: The quality of our ink conforms to the international standards and it will be available as an import substitute at an affordable price. There are only three companies in the world who make creditable inks in this sector – we are the fourth .
WP: What’s the USP?
PD: Our quality satisfies the required standards but at a comfortable price compared to the foreign brands. So it creates a wide market for printers in India to get into this business without having to import from other countries.
WP: How easy is it to use?
PD: The inks are backed by easy-to-comprehend technical data sheets for conventional flexo, gravure and screen inks. It is easy to use and easy to print for those who get accustomed to these inks.
WP: Assembly line speed?
PD: The assembly line speed varies in the print process from screen to flexo to gravure; with varying print parameters of speed.
WP: How does it score on the merits like being trouble-free?
PD: The inks perform well in their respective printing machine processes with due observance of dilution, speed and requisite controls. For example; the water based flexo steam sterilisation inks print smoothly provided the recommended anilox is used, press room ambient temperature and humidity level is maintained. Also inks should not be wrongly diluted or mixed with any unrecommended materials.
WP: What about recyclability and sustainability of the sheets?
PD: The substrates used range from papers to plastics which are candidates for recyclability along with our inks which are formulated with biodegradable materials in the water based segment.
WP: What are the application areas?
PD: The inks are used for products that require sterilisation to ensure that all products which can be exposed to any kinds of pathogens are effectively disinfected and made safe for human or animal contact.
For example surgical instruments which are in contact with human skin and internal tissues when surgeries are being done – they have to be completely disinfected before they are used to operate.
WP: What kind of manufacturing compliance does the ink follow?
PD: The inks are dispersed and milled in dedicated machinery and equipment to ensure that they would pass all standards for presence of contaminants. The inks are tested for viscosity and solids are ensured from batch to batch because any variation in solids will alter the print colour and the transition colour density.
WP: How sustainable are these inks?
PD: The water-based inks are good candidates for sustainability goals.
WP: What’s the price? How affordable are these inks as compared to competition?
PD: The price is below the competition which has ruled the roost mainly due to a veritable monopoly.
WP: Key customers?
PD: The key customers are from an unknown segment of the printer community being a very niche field
WP: Contact person (details)?
PD: Akil Contractor
WP: Technical specifications of the product:
PD: Technical specifications of water based steam sterilisation indicator inks:
1.3 TO 1.39
100 LINES PER inch
40 LINES PER cm
43- 52 DEG C
110 -125 DEG F
200-400 ft /min
60 -120 metres /min
Films, foils, papers, tapes ,thermal paper stocks
1 kg, 5 kg , 20 kg plastic pails
6 months from shipment date