The Association of International Metallizers, Coaters and Laminators (AIMCAL)
presented its 2020 Product of the Year Award on April 16, during a special Virtual Awards presentation.
The AIMCAL Awards Webinar replaced the traditional Awards Ceremony, planned for the group’s Executive Leadership Conference in March, which was canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Winners also will be recognized at the AIMCAL 2020 R2R USA Conference (Oct. 18-21, Orlando, FL).
The winner of the Package of the Year Award is a transfer-metalized carton for Arctic Blue Gin with custom holography from Hazen Paper Co. (Holyoke, MA), an AIMCAL member that operates on hydroelectric power.
The custom hologram shimmers, flashes, and flares in the background to create an illusion of the northern lights.
As the viewing angle changes, the holography flashes and moves like an animation.
The optical effect is created with a sub-micron embossing grid in the transfer-metalized layer. The ultra-thin coating layer provides visual imact typical of much thicker structures.
Other elements in the Nordic scene include a pine tree overhanging a frozen lake. After designing the hologram, Hazen replicated it with its Envirofoil transfer-metalizing lamination process on a second-use film carrier. The image was then transferred to Metsa Pro FBB paperboard, which was printed and converted by AM Litho
The judges also presented three Product Excellence Awards.
The second award winner for Hazen Paper involved a setup carton for a gift box for Woman by Ralph Lauren.
The gift box consists of two weights of solid bleached sulfate laminated to 48-gauge matte and gloss metalized polyester.
The metalized film is found on the outer top cover, the inside and outer surface of the base, and on top of a die-cut insert, which fits on a thermoformed pocketed tray that cradles the products.
Another Product Excellence Award went to Flex Films (USA) Inc. (Elizabethtown, KY), the U.S. subsidiary of Uflex Limited, Films Business (Noida, India), for colorful tubes for Clariss Organic face wash.
The FlexiTube format delivers high-definition, 360-degree-printed graphics by laminating reverse-printed rotogravure film to the tube substrate. A matte finish imparts a premium appearance. Barrier properties and anticounterfeiting features can be integrated into the structure.
Dow Chemical Co. (Lake Jackson, TX) took home a Product Excellence Award for its water-based Opulux matte finish for premium packaging. It also earned a Technical Excellence Award.
The coating delivers a low-gloss, soft-touch matte finish with excellent color fidelity, contact transparency, anti-seal/thermal resistance, and brasion resistance and enhances the recyclability of polyolefin and paper structures.
The finish is imparted by acrylic beads with a designed gradient refractive index and controlled particle size distribution and may be applied on conventional coating/printing equipment to a wide range of film and paper substrates. Compatible with food-contact requirements, the finish can replace traditional overprinting varnishes and toxic polyaziridine chemistry.
The judging teleconference was moderated by Chris Kerscher, executive director of AIMCAL. The panel consisted of experts in converting and packaging: Larry Jopko, principal of Stickum Consultancy LLC (Houston, TX); Robert M. Kimmel, Sc.D., associate professor, director, Packaging Science Program, director, Center for Flexible Packaging, Department of Food, Nutrition and Packaging Sciences, Clemson University (Clemson, SC); and Jeff Weber, package application manager at Scholle IPN (Northlake, IL).
The AIMCAL Product of the Year Award is part of the AIMCAL Awards program, which also includes Technology of the Year and Sustainability Award competitions and the new Hall of Honor.