The Association of International Metallizers, Coaters and Laminators (AIMCAL) bestowed its Product of the Year Award on Unifoil Corp., Fairfield, New Jersey, for a series of cartons for Camel Menthol, Camel Bold and Camel Crush cigarettes from RJR Tobacco, Winston-Salem, North Carolina.
Unifoil served as converter and metallizer on the project; while RJR Tobacco provided the design. Unifoil relies on its Unilustre technology to transfer-metallize the 12-point solid bleached sulfate (SBS) tobacco stock supplied by International Paper, Memphis, Tennessee. The barrel-corner cartons are produced on a litho web press and contract-packaged by Amcor, Reidsville, North Carolina.
Compared to nonmetallized predecessors, the metallized designs attract more attention at retail. The nonlaminated SBS provides a bondable surface and excellent embossability and also die-cuts and scores precisely, essential features for handling on high-speed cigarette packaging lines. The transfer-metallized paperboard not only delivers acceptable performance for taste and odor, but also is recyclable and repulpable. Alternatives such as metallized film/board laminates would be more likely to warp and harder to emboss, while metallic inks yield a less reflective surface.
The Camel cigarette cartons wowed the judges. Members of the panel felt the metallized cartons demonstrate marketing and technical merit. The cartons not only stand out in the cigarette category, but also demonstrate the compatibility of metallized material with high-speed production. "Cigarette lines run at amazing speeds," observed one judge. "Great registration and design features," noted another judge. "These cartons look like metal cases down to the faux rivets and rounded edge," commented a third member of the panel.
The Product of the Year Award in AIMCAL's annual Vacuum Metallized or Coated Product Competition was presented at an Awards Banquet on Sunday, March 11, 2012, during the association's annual Management Meeting (March 11-14, 2012, at the Rio Mar Beach Resort in Rio Grande, Puerto Rico). The judges also named eight category winners, which received either a Marketing or Technical Award.
Uflex Limited, Noida, India, took home the Marketing Award in the Food Packaging Category for a preformed, stand-up bag for 12 kilograms (26.4 pounds) of Land of Sybaris dog food from Multirange Ltd., Liverpool, U.K. The five-layer, hermetically sealed bag consists of biaxially oriented polypropylene (BOPP)/metallized BOPP/low-density polyethylene laminate and features a reclosable slider zipper. A special rib construction reinforces the upper seal area, enabling the bag to withstand rigorous drop tests. The metallized center layer and reverse printing of the top layer with special pearlescent inks achieve the upscale satin appearance the customer desired. The metallized BOPP also enhances barrier properties. Uflex supplied the substrates, metallized the BOPP and converted the preformed bag based on a design from Multirange.
Members of the judging panel agreed the package was "gorgeous." They loved its upscale appearance as well as its resealability and noted the size of the bag and its matte surface differentiates the product. "The matte finish also eliminates fingerprints," observed one judge. "It's very upscale for dog food," concluded another.
The Technical Award in the Food Packaging Category went to Super Film Ambalaj San. Tic. A.S., Gaziantep, Turkey, for metallizing biaxially oriented polyethylene terephthalate (BOPET) PETwist film, which Dali Ambalaj, Konya, Turkey, converts into twist wrap for confectionery and non-confectionery products. ‘The PETwist BT 1231 MBY film is a twistable, non-heat-sealable white pigmented material that is metallized on one side and treated to ensure good adhesion of inks and coatings. The BOPET film provides an alternative to polyvinyl chloride (PVC) and cast PP. The BOPET film delivers good gas and scent barrier, high tensile strength, gloss, stiffness, puncture resistance and twistability. It also offers higher yield than PVC or cellophane twist wraps. Acceptable for direct food contact, it eliminates the need for the second piece of film typically used with PVC twist wrap for single pieces of candy. The judges were impressed with the material's attractive appearance and twist retention. "It doesn't snap back," observed one member of the panel.
In the Healthcare, Cosmetics and Toiletries Packaging Category, Unifoil captured the Marketing Award, and Hazen Paper Co., Holyoke, Massachusetts, earned the Technical Award.
The Marketing Award recognizes a striking holographic folding carton for Aquafresh Extreme Clean Toothpaste from GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), Raleigh, North Carolina. GSK designed the package, which is converted by Unifoil using an 18-pound SBS substrate supplied by Shorewood Packaging, Carlstadt, New Jersey. It's laminated to an acrylic-coated, 1-mil polyester film metallized by Wavefront Technologies, Paramount, California. The metallized polyester features a custom-registered diffraction effect along with a large, three-dimensional, lens to identify the Extreme Clean brand family of four products. Color coding the lens delivers major impact on store shelves.
Opaque and transparent ink behind the lens and Aquafresh logo further accentuate the brand identity. Shorewood also is responsible for contract packaging.
The judges were impressed by the three-dimensional, lenticular effect of the lens. "It looks embossed, but it's actually flat," commented one judge. "It really has stopping power from the shelf," noted another. Even though metallized packaging is a common sight in the toothpaste aisle, "this design really uses the technology to the fullest," observed a third.
Hazen Paper captured the Technical Award in the Healthcare, Cosmetics and Toiletries Packaging Category for an upscale carton for the retail introduction of a premium gel nail polish. The carton structure for Nutra Nail Gel Perfect Polish from CCA Industries, Inc., East Rutherford, New Jersey, consists of coated-one-side, 18-point SBS, laminated in register with metallized, custom holographic, 60-gauge polyester. Hazen Paper's two-channel Ultracure acrylic-lacquered custom hologram pattern #1-6 Kleido-Burst adds depth and draws eyes to the product. Hazen Paper provided the substrate and metallizing for converter/printer Shorewood Packaging. Design credit goes to Jamel Rankins, creative director at CCA Industries.
With both circular and ray holographic patterns, the judges felt this package presents a unique sparkle and would look active on store shelves. "A well-thought-out design," they agreed.
Hazen Paper swept the Decorative/Display Category. The Marketing Award recognizes a holographic cover for a Collector's Edition Program for Super Bowl XLV. Hazen created the custom holographic image and embossed it onto transfer film that was coated in-house. Hazen then metallized the transfer holographic material and transfer-metallized the coated-two-side, 100-pound stock from NewPage, Miamisburg, Ohio. The final step involved sheeting and printing the 19 x 36-inch sheets in register with the holography. Once printed, the cover was bound to the program by Quad/Graphics, Sussex, Wisconsin.
The judges were impressed by how the elements of the 2011 Super Bowl program cover worked together. "These holographic images go beyond patterns to become an integrated design," they concluded.
The Technical Award in the Decorative/Display Category honors a wall calendar that showcases Hazen Paper's design, converting and metallizing capabilities. Produced completely in-house, the coated-two-side, 0.010 paperboard calendar features 10 transfer-laminated holographic patterns and demonstrates the potential for producing packaging for multiple stock-keeping units on a single sheet. AM Litho, Chicopee, Massachusetts, provided contract packaging services.
The judges liked the variety of holograms and the registration of the various images on the calendar. "There's a lot a going on, on one sheet," noted one member of the panel. "It's an interesting demo of Hazen Paper's one-stop shop capability," said another.
Unifoil and Hazen Paper also split the awards in the Other Category. Unifoil captured the Marketing Award for designing and converting a dual-envelope combination it uses for overnight courier deliveries. Based on Unifoil's Unilustre transfer-metallizing technology, the inner 16-point SBS envelope features vivid printing and holography to communicate the importance of the contents. The outer envelope, also 16-point SBS, presents a metallic blue butterfly and environmental message. Both envelopes are printed with ultraviolet inks and a matte overprint varnish. International Paper supplied the SBS. Other participants on the project included ITW Foils, Newburyport, Massachusetts, and Hub Folding Box, Mansfield, Massachusetts, which performed metallizing and contract packaging services, respectively.
"The metallizing really brings the butterfly to life," noted one judge. "The vibrant design makes you want to open the envelope," agreed another.
The Technical Award in the Other Category went to Hazen Paper for a striking Driven 2 Design postcard promotion sent to attendees at the HOW Conference 2011, organized by Color Logic, West Chester, Ohio. Color Logic provided the design, while Hazen Paper supplied the substrate, metallizing and converting. Integrity Graphics Inc., Windsor, Connecticut, performed contract packaging duties. The 12-point Foiljet Digital paperboard is coated on two sides with a proprietary coating, certified for printing on HP Indigo digital presses. Billed as the first HP Indigo-certified transfer-metallized substrate, the material also is easily recycled because metal content is extremely low and there's no film layer.
Judges noted the proprietary coating opens the door to combining metallization with digital printing. They also liked the design. "The car looks like it's driving off the page," said one member of the panel. "The flames really stand out," added another.
The judging panel for the Vacuum Metallized or Coated Product Competition included Vince DiTrolio, vice president/owner of DiTrolio Flexographic Institute, Broadview, Illinois; Travis Funk, manager packaging innovation, Diageo, Norwalk, Connecticut; Jeffrey T. Weber, research principal, Kraft Foods, Glenview, Illinois; Stan Kopecky, principal, SJK Packaging Associates, Prospect Heights, Illinois; Pat Reynolds, editor-in-chief, Packaging World magazine, Chicago, Illinois; and Yolanda Simonsis, president/editorial director, Paper, Film & Foil Converter, Chicago, Illinois. AIMCAL Awards Committee Chair Randy Apperson, director of Sales & Marketing at Finzer Roller, Des Plaines, Illinois, moderated the judging session, which was hosted by Paper, Film & Foil Converter in conjunction with Packaging World.