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Digital label printing gathers pace in Canada

09-01-2019

Brampton-based DATA Communications Management (DCM) recently became the first company in Canada to install the Gallus Labelfire 340 from Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG (Heidelberg). The investment is aimed at boosting performance in the fast-turnaround production of customized labels. A market leader in print-on-demand solutions in Canada, DCM has focused on traditional flexographic labels for the past 50 years.

As one of the country’s biggest label manufacturers, the company expects considerable progress in terms of productivity and quality in the printing of variable labels. Alan Roberts, Senior Vice President at DCM, explains: “Our customers want shorter runs and labels with greater customization. If we want to lead the market for fast-turnaround prime labels, we need the best hybrid technology, and I believe that’s what we have in the Heidelberg-Gallus Labelfire 340.”

The Gallus Labelfire 340 sets new standards in the label market and combines the very latest digital printing advances with the benefits of conventional printing and postpress technologies. To help meet the growing customer requirements that DCM has to satisfy in short runs, the system prints at a speed of 50 meters per minute. “A hybrid machine is the right solution for our company because – unlike a digital-only press – it offers us the flexibility we need to give our customers what they want, particularly as we can take care of everything in a single pass,” Roberts points out.

Digital label printing gathers pace in Canada

Another factor that won over DCM was the additional functions of the Labelfire 340, which enhance the quality and color of labels. Exhibiting a resolution of 1200 x 1200 dpi, the system features cutting-edge inkjet technology with seven colors plus white, combined with three conventional flexographic printing units – all controlled by the Prinect Digital Frontend from Heidelberg.

The integration of Gallus Ferdinand Rüesch AG into the Heidelberg distribution organization means DCM can tap into the biggest service network in the industry. “One of the main reasons we opted for a Labelfire was that we knew it would give us round-the-clock access to Heidelberg services, which is a huge competitive edge,” says Roberts. “Other companies we’ve worked with in the past have had to send us service teams from the United States. In contrast, Heidelberg has its own service engineers in Canada, who can reach us quickly and efficiently. That’s a major advantage.”

The label market is one of the printing industry’s biggest growth segments. The dynamic growth in demand for digitally printed labels in particular continues unabated. Since the Gallus Labelfire 340 digital label printing press was launched worldwide as a joint development by Heidelberg and Gallus based on cutting-edge inkjet technology from Fujifilm, series production has been running smoothly at the Heidelberg site in Wiesloch-Walldorf. Heidelberg produces the digital inkjet unit of the Labelfire in Wiesloch-Walldorf, where the company’s entire digital printing portfolio is manufactured. The base unit of the new press is manufactured at the Langgöns site. The system is designed to meet growing demand for the cost-effective production of short, medium, and versioned label runs. A number of companies in North America have already installed and started running a Gallus Labelfire successfully.


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