The Kinyosha Printing company, a packaging printer with headquarters in Tokyo, Japan, has installed and started production with a Uteco Sapphire Evo inkjet press.
Kinyosha, which was founded in 1915, operates three factories in Japan. It appears to have fingers in several pies, including developing audio-visual and gaming software, as well as media production, printed building materials, such as tiles, flooring and wallpaper, and packaging printing, which includes both food and packaging for games and DVDs.
The press has been installed at the Kinyosha plant in Ōguchi, a short distance from the Nagoya urban area. It can be configured with an inline priming station to print to flexible films, and Kodak says that this is what most customers are choosing to do. However, Kinyosha, which is using it to print both paper and plastics substrates such as PP, BOPP, PE and PET, has opted to keep the priming station offline so that it is sitting just next to the Sapphire EVO press on the production floor. Kinyosha is using Kodak’s water-based Personal Care pigment inks which are certified for skin contact on personal care products and comply with regulatory requirements for indirect food contact in the EU and the US.
Kodak says that it’s the first of these presses to complete the installation process though there is a second customer in Italy with a press that has passed Factory Acceptance Testing and which is now being installed.
Izumi Makino, President of DP2 International (Digital Package Print International), a subsidiary of Kinyosha that is responsible for packaging digital marketing activities, commented: “It is exciting to be the first operating installation site in the world for this ground breaking capability in the packaging market. The flexibility to digitally print on flexible substrates and papers with environmentally friendly inks will enable us to offer our brand customers new creative solutions.”
Uteco worked with Kodak to develop the Sapphire Evo, which uses Kodak’s Stream continuous inkjet technology, as found in its current Prosper presses. It offers a maximum web width of 650mm and a print width of 622mm. It’s capable of running at up to 150mpm, which Kodak claims is faster than any other digital solution for flexible substrates.
Uteco and Kodak are working on a wider version, the Sapphire Evo W, which will use the next generation UltraStream printheads, which I’ve covered here.