ICE USA 2017, marking its fourth edition in the Americas, is touted as North America’s leading converting exhibition, bringing over 250 exhibitors together with thousands of packaging, paper, nonwoven and self-adhesive industry professionals. “ICE USA is where people come to see converting equipment, and we definitely had more equipment on the show floor than ever before; 225 pieces to be exact,” said Melissa Magestro, executive vice president of Mack Books Exhibitions. “This is definitely the place to come to see the latest technology and products, and the addition of InPrint on the show floor created great additional value.”
Marcus Timson, co-founder of the InPrint show, commented, “We are very excited about how well InPrint USA was received. There is definitely a need in the largest manufacturing market in the world for a show dedicated to educating and offering solutions for industrial print applications.” InPrint USA 2017 focused on connecting manufacturers who use print as a key component of the manufacturing process with leading brands in the fields of industrial specialty, screen, digital, inkjet and 3D technology print solutions.
Bill Lydick of PDS Equipment and an InPrint exhibitor stated, “Our company sold three machines right off the show floor. We were thrilled with the visitors’ response, considering InPrint is a brand new show in the US market.”
Joe DiSabantonio, owner, SPS Ideal Solutions and ICE USA exhibitor, said, “The quality of leads we got was higher than we have seen at other shows. Real decision makers attend this event and come in looking for the type of applications we offer. We are expecting to close sales directly related to our participation at ICE USA.”
Ask the Experts
Converting professionals attending ICE USA 2017 had access to even more solutions and troubleshooting advice for their specific technical challenges thanks to an expanded Ask the Experts program. New to the program this year was adhesives expert Ingrid Brase, a technical market strategist and formerly of Henkel. The Ask the Experts program is a popular service that ICE USA provides its attendees, offering them the chance to book one-on-one complimentary appointments with some of the industry’s leading consultants. Visitors were able to get expert opinions on strategic decisions, discover ways to expand their business, and received advice for solving production and operational challenges.
ICE USA expanded the program for 2017, launching an Ask the Experts community online via LinkedIn, where professionals in the converting industry are able to connect, share expertise, and continue conversations started at the show any time of the year.
With the addition of Brase, ICE USA had a team of seven experts offering more opportunities for attendees to book appointments. Brase brought her more than 20 years of experience in the converting industry and is a well-recognized speaker on the topic of pressure sensitive adhesives and their applications. Prior to launching her consulting business, she was the market segment director for Henkel Corporation’s Pressure Sensitive Adhesives and co-chair of Henkel’s Bridgewater Networking Organization for the Women’s Professional Development Committee.
“We were very excited that Ingrid joined our Ask the Experts team,” said Magestro. “Her expertise in pressure sensitive adhesives rounds out our group of experts to cover almost every facet of the converting industry. We were also thrilled to have a woman with unparalleled technical expertise join the team to serve as a mentor to women in the industry.”
From the show floor
Among the 250+ exhibitors, there were several new product launches and machinery demonstrations at ICE USA 2017.
Delta ModTech held equipment demonstrations, highlighting its Flex EDGE Laser Technology, touted as the perfect solution for markets that demand flexibility. With Flex EDGE, new job setup is quick and the ability to recall saved products speeds up changeovers. It is completely portable and can be used inline or offline with various configurations to allow for production and R&D use in both roll-to-roll and sheetfed. Delta’s Complex Converting demonstration showcased a variety of processes, including tight tolerance rotary diecutting, multi-layer lamination and precise part placement. This system is designed to offer precision parts while minimizing waste of expensive materials. Other Delta ModTech systems may include capabilities such as semi-rotary, full rotary and laser cutting, as well as heat seal pouching.
Frontier, a division of Delta ModTech, showcased Dynacoat. This coater is a compact and completely self-contained lab-scale system for coating process optimization. Delta ModTech and Frontier provide converting, packaging and coating solutions for customers in the diagnostics, transdermal, electrode, wound care medical, pharmaceutical, security, automotive, electronics and label manufacturing industries.
Omet Americas was on hand to discuss the benefits of its Varyflex V4 Offset press. The first of its kind, the Varyflex V4 Offset is touted as a real breakthrough in the mid-web package printing market. “Thanks to Omet’s patented offset sleeve print unit featuring next-generation technologies and electronics, the inline flexo units provide the best performance in the production of high-end flexible packaging, premium labels and special applications,” said sales director Claudio Semenza.
Every offset unit of the Omet press features the “Easy Sleeve Format Change” system, with independent pressure adjustment and automatic register control, which allow quick and easy job changeovers in a few minutes. This press is designed to work in different configurations: Wet-On-Dry with interdeck UV curing or Wet-On-Wet with UV or EB curing at the end of the line.
“The Varyflex V4 Offset was designed to anticipate the necessities of the market and lead companies towards the future. With this line, Omet widens its product range and consolidates its leading position in the flexible packaging market, providing an answer to the widespread need for added value and customization,” Semenza said.
Precision AirConvey (PAC) showcased its matrix removal systems at ICE USA. PAC’s matrix waste removal systems capture matrix right at the press, shredding it and whisking it away pneumatically (using air) to a waste bin or baler. There is no winding needed with these systems, which means there’s no reason to waste time and halt production while workers remove big, awkward rolls of matrix waste. “This increases your productivity and can even reduce workers’ comp claims from heavy lifting,” according to PAC. “And since there’s no web to wind, press stoppages caused by web breaks are eliminated, too.”
Phoseon exhibited its latest UV LED curing solutions for printing applications at the show. Phoseon LED technology is a perfect fit for printing applications due to the compact size, ease of integration, and high intensity output achieved through optimized LED thermal management. Users of Phoseon LED curing systems can process a variety of materials, including thin and heat-sensitive substrates, at maximum production speeds with low-input power.
Unilux, a manufacturer of inspection strobe lights, demonstrated new LED strobes for the inspection of surface and print quality. Visitors to the Unilux booth were able to demo the new strobes and learn how these inspection tools can be put to use. One of the new additions to the Unilux product line is the LED-UV inspection strobes. The new strobes can be used to examine the quality of optical brighteners in ink and coatings.
ebeam Technologies exhibited EID, touted as the world’s first electron beam system for curing inkjet inks on Food Contact Materials (FCMs). Attendees were able to discover more about the production of high-quality, durable, food-safe finishes achieved through printing with ebeam-curable inkjet inks and inline curing by EID. Karl Swanson, VP of global sales, ebeam Technologies, commented, “Converters looking for ways to help their food brand customers differentiate their product through personalization and eliminate challenges such as the need for UV photoinitiators are discovering how ebeam technology solves these problems. Food packaging converters are keen to avoid the risks associated with photoinitiator migration from UV inks used on indirect food contact materials. With ebeam, this issue is eliminated because the EID provides a compact curing stage for photoinitiator-free ebeam-curable inks.”
Karlville exhibited its recently launched new lines for can sleeving: low speed (100cpm) and high speed (up to 500cpm). “As a leading global manufacturer of shrink sleeve converting and shrink sleeve application equipment, we take control of your challenges and help you deliver, on time and on cost, innovative solutions that will support your growth with a little effort on your part and a lot of great ideas to delight your customers,” said Karlville’s Raul Matos, adding, “Custom can decoration is now an affordable investment through shrink sleeve technology. This opens up new opportunities and increases speed to market. No volume is too small, nor are design or colors too complicated, just let us know what you have in mind and we will deliver quickly and at the right cost with high quality.”
The next ICE USA exhibition will be held in Louisville, KY, April 9-11, 2019.