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Peel open microwaveable packs by FFP

10 December 2010

FFP Packaging Solutions of Northampton has helped Tulip International launch its pork snack Wicked Pig, and in the process helped themselves to a UK Packaging Award

Wicked Pig is Tulip International’s major launch into the £65 million ‘meat snack’ category, involving a completely new production line and the sponsoring of a TV station, Sty TV.

FFP has supplied striking microwaveable and easy-open laminated flexible packaging to help to drive the launch.

FFP selected a laminate of matt OPP and special heatseal coated polyester. The matt film provides sophisticated appeal plus a good seal on the 'shoulders' of the finished pack. For the inner seal layer, polyester gives the necessary heat resistance while the heatseal coating imparts a very smooth peel when opening the pack, further enhancing the high quality feel.

The key to the superb print quality is a new screening technique. The product shots must be printed ‘clean’, of course, but the significant breakthrough is in the fine shadowing or ‘vignetting’ in the background. In conventional flexo printing the print effects are created by varying the size of the ‘dots’.

As these get smaller they are difficult to control, and it is particularly hard to achieve a soft edge to a vignetted effect, often resulting in a ‘tidemark’. A new technique has been pioneered in these Wicked Pigs packs that reduces the density of the dots once the required ink coverage reduces below 4%, rather than just reducing their size.

By removing dots in a controlled way, these very soft, controlled edges have been achieved. Additionally, FFP used a very high resolution 175 line screen print, further enhancing the high quality of the print.

The quality of the pack and the print was impressive. FFP Packaging Solutions entered the Wicked Pig pack in the UK Packaging Awards, picking up the Flexible Pack of the Year prize for the second year running.

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