INX highlights colour management solutions at Cannex & Fillex Asia Pacific

Image: INX

At Cannex & Fillex Asia Pacific 2024 (taking place 16-19 July), global metal decorating specialist, INX International Ink Co, will feature new products that were developed since the show was last held in 2019.

“We are excited to exhibit again in China and engage with the international audience that attends the show,” said Renee Schouten, INX vice president of marketing. “Visitors to the INX booth can explore the latest in metal decorating ink solutions, our INX Color Perfection colour management program, and meet with an INX print application specialist. Whether you are a loyal customer or exploring new ink partnerships, INX is committed to supporting you every step of the way.”

Beverage can inks

The new pair of black and white two-piece metal decorating inks being introduced are upgrades for can makers and beverage brands looking to stand out on store shelves.

AP Retort Jet Black inks received an upgrade to help print at high densities. Alex Folloso, who recently was promoted to vice president of R&D metal decorating technology, said customers are reporting sharper, dense black printing with improved colour strength, transfer and coverage, and mileage.

“Most canned beverages that contain a percentage of milk or dairy will require a retortable ink like AP Retort Jet Black,” said Folloso, a 26-year INX veteran. “We’ve had major coffee and beverage brands in North America tell us about their performance and appearance improvements, and we are now introducing this product outside the United States.”

Folloso indicated some customers are also noticing reduced Hold For Inspection (HFI) rates for quality issues involving an off colour or some type of can defect.

“One decorator can print up to 10,000 cans in five minutes, so based on the quantity of cans produced, there is a huge cost for HFI,” he added. “The target is zero so reducing the number of HFI’s is important to the manufacturer. These are some of the improvements our metal R&D and technical team will continue to address.”

AP LoVOC Line White inks give customers the ability to print a bright and sharper white, with better press performance and drying. Customers who are using it have noted improved opacity, transfer from blanket to can well, and substrate coverage.

“Based on our customer feedback, AP LoVOC Line White is meeting their requirements. One major beer company is currently using it on several of their brand labels that require a high percentage of white coverage,” said Folloso. “We also improved the rheology of this ink. For metal decorating inks, it is important to balance the viscosity and flow for optimal performance on high speed decorators that are printing around 2,000 cans per minute.”

INX Tactile Plus inks can also run on high speed decorators. Schouten said since the inks are compatible with all improved Tactile Overprint Varnish coatings, it makes them an attractive consideration.

“It’s important to know that Tactile Plus inks are safe to use since they do not contain CMR’s of PTFE/PFAS materials,” she explained. “These inks give a unique raised textured effect on the printed surface of the can. They can also be used with standard LoVOC inks for both a non-tactile and tactile effect on the same can.”

Another sustainable ink gaining market traction and acceptance with brand owners and metal decorators is the AP EcoCan two-piece metal ink system. Formulated for low VOC and BPA-NI for aluminum and coated steel beverage cans, it is the industry’s first eco-friendly beverage can ink to receive a Gold Level Material Health Certificate from the Cradle-to-Cradle Products Innovation Institute. In collaboration with the Environmental Protection Encouragement Agency, the Gold certification is awarded to products that avoid the use of chemicals of concern.

INX Color Perfection

The INX Color Perfection programme has helped hundreds of brand owners, design agencies, marketers, and metal decorators to streamline and standardise their can design process, so labels reach the market quicker and more efficiently.

INX Color Perfection includes the INX Color Catalog, which now contains over 650 removable color metal swatches after a recent addition. Widely accepted as the only true color standard for metal decorating, this proprietary numbering system provides access to the same INX colors via the INX Digital Color Library plug-in that is available for AdobeÒ design programs.

“The other INX Color Perfection component customers can take advantage of is our free INX University program,” acknowledged Schouten. “The metal decorating courses available have something for everyone, from beginners to industry veterans. We offer seven courses ranging from basic education on the artwork submittal process, to color education and troubleshooting. You learn at your own pace so we welcome anyone who will be attending the show to ask us how it can help them.”

Show attendees wanting to arrange a meeting with INX in booth 1319 can click here.

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