LEADING Melbourne flexographic printer and converter ABM Plastics has won two Gold Medals in the US FTA Excellence in Flexography Awards with entries which left the American judges exclaiming the winners this year were among the best print jobs they had ever seen.
ABM won two Golds, more than any other entrant, and judges had difficulty separating one of its packs from the eventual Best in Show won by a pack submitted by Tetra Pak.
The two Australian winners, both in the wide web category, were Purina Alpo Japan Beef (process, film) and Stork Somen Noodles (screen, film). They were printed using DuPont Cyrel Digital (DPI) photopolymer printing plates.
This was the second consecutive year that ABM has won Gold at the FTA.
Observers said this was a tremendous achievement for the Australian company, considering the large number of international competitors participating in this largest category, and highlighted ABM as a world class supplier of flexographically printed flexible packaging.
One judge, Jeff Albaugh, of Mastergraphics, said: "Both the quality and complexity of this year's entries were outstanding. Based on what I've seen, I get a strong sense that flexo quality at times far exceeds that of offset and gravure.
“The great improvement in flexo tonal reproduction, along with fantastic ink coverage, makes the end product jump off the shelf."
Tom Cassano, of MacDermid Printing Solutions, said that in general, quality was on the rise. “The two entries that vied for best of show, Tetra Pak’s Imagine Broth and ABM Plastics’ Alpo, were clearly head-and-shoulders above the rest.”
Andy Berg, Sealed Air, said: "Alpo held a full range of colours in process areas, tightly held registration and printed very clean in both process and screen areas. What stood out on the Alpo job was the flesh tones.
“ It was amazing. I don't think I ever saw flesh-tone detail as good as I did on that particular job. It is one of the most difficult things to print. Execution was highly technical." ABM Plastics (03 8587 9811).