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Prima Tapes & Labels celebrates BRC accreditation with a Mark Andy Evolution flexo press

  • Publicado el 26 de Junio de 2024

UK tape and label converting specialist Prima has installed a 340mm Mark Andy Evolution Series E5 flexo press at its headquarters in Orpington, SE London. The new six-colour UV flexo line will provide extra print capacity to coincide with Prima’s newly attained BRCGS Grade A rating, achieved at the first attempt.

Prima Tapes & Labels celebrates BRC accreditation with a Mark Andy Evolution flexo press

Established in Beckenham by Sam Lee in 1966 as a supplier of various types of adhesive tapes principally to the London and Kent market, the company saw moves to Crystal Palace and then Clapham, South London, before settling in its current location in 1996. Alongside this, came the development of the registered ‘Prima’ marque as an established and reputable brand of quality and reliability. Now under third generation family ownership and management, with David Lee and Mark Lee succeeding their respective fathers Julian and Martin Lee, the company began to expand its business in the early 1980s.

The move into label production came with the installation of a Mark Andy 2200 press in 1994. This 254mm six-colour machine sits alongside two other 2200 flexo lines, of which one has both water-based and UV ink capability. According to Julian Lee, the initial choice of a Mark Andy 2200 Series was made on its unmatched balance of price and performance, and this has been substantiated by the fact that it’s still in daily operation.

According to David Lee: “We have remained loyal to Mark Andy because of the unwavering support they have given us over the years. Our 2200 Series and 830 Series presses are reliable and great commercial workhorses, so when we needed more capacity, Mark Andy was our first port of call.” Installed in a newly created production area of the company’s impressive 5000 sq/m facility, the new Evolution Series E5 is one of Mark Andy’s scalable range of flexo presses for the label market.

Speaking for Mark Andy, UK Sales Manager Phil Baldwin said: “The Evolution Series is designed to complement the workflow needs of label converters, which are likely to change in today’s volatile market. It’s a versatile press, capable of being upscaled as the need requires and will handle a range of products from prime labels to tags, tickets, filmics, in-mould, lids, and shrink sleeves.”

The new servo driven Evolution Series E5 at Prima is a full UV press, capable of 230 m/min on substrates from 12 to 300-micron. It has a print repeat of 140 – 610mm and a standard unwind and rewind capacity of 1016mm. In addition, it has an overhead rail system to accommodate pressure sensitive lamination and foil wind-up for cold foil application. The Evolution Series E5 is fitted with a vertical die station, a sheeting die station, and a dual rewind.

The newly acquired BRC rating and added capacity of the Mark Andy Series E5 will allow David, Mark, and the sales team to grow the company’s business within the UK’s vast supermarket supply chain. “The fact that we achieved Grade A at our first attempt proved that we already had high standards – now we have internationally respected third-party confirmation of this I can foresee the label side of our business taking off,” he added.

Currently, Prima’s annual output is split 50:50 tapes and labels, but Mr Lee says the label side has more potential for growth, while the company’s extensive knowledge and expertise in tape manufacture and adhesives will continue to provide a strong financial base for this. The company is fully self-sufficient with in-house studio facilities for artwork through platemaking to delivery of finished goods with its own fleet of vehicles that cover a radius of around 80 miles, while its large warehouse stores a vast range and quantity of stock to allow fast delivery.

With a staff of 28 working single shift plus overtime five days a week, there is clearly scope for expansion, and as Phil Baldwin concluded: “The Prima/Mark Andy relationship is sample proof of the benefit to both sides of working together long-term – and we look forward to helping them grow their business with our technology well into the future.”

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