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Mercian Labels Group launch digitally printed folding cartons

With unique features and variable data now ever more frequently demanded in the carton industry, the Mercian Labels Group have today announced the launch of their latest innovative new service at the Packaging Innovations Exhibitionin Birmingham, UK. Using the latest Xeikon 3000 series digital platform and a unique new inline conversion process, the company are now delivering variable data and multiple designs onto printed folding cartons, cost effectively in short runs.

Managing Director Dr Adrian Steele said “The conventional sheet fed litho manufacturing process for printed folding cartons limits the creativity that brands wish to incorporate into their packaging. Digital printing permits the inclusion of personalised content on every pack, with infinite versions for trials as well as inclusion of unique brand protection features. The Xeikon imaging technology we use offers fantastic full colour 1200dpi quality using light-fast and FDA approved food-safe toners.”

The samples on show at the Easyfairs Packaging Innovations Exhibition are printed on high quality 400 micron folding cartonboard, and incorporate a number of security features such as microtext, variable barcodes and variable text and numbering.

“The Mercian Labels Group have combined digital print with an innovative and unique converting process to print and die cut the cartons in a single pass that is ready for conventional folding and gluing. Die origination is cheap and fast, and we are looking to bring lead times down to those offered to our labelling customers, typically being 3-5 days from artwork approval”, said Adrian.

“We expect this new service, which we believe to be the first of its kind in the UK, to attract excitement and interest from brands of all sizes looking to differentiate their offering using their printed cartons.”

“Our labelling experience shows us that customers who have taken advantage of the benefits of digital printing have seen significant increases in their businesses as multiple SKUs appealing to smaller but higher value niche markets becomes cost effective. We expect a similar trend to happen in printed folding cartons.”

“As the market leader in multi-design labelling in the UK we have an established track record of bringing the advantages of digital print to the labelling market, and we are now expanding this into new and innovative forms of packaging as well.”

Applications will include prototyping, market tests, short run batches, security packaging and unique direct marketing content.

Further details of the new service are available at