By Contributing Editor Hallie Forcinio
A transfer-metallized carton for Arctic Blue Gin with custom holography, submitted by Hazen Paper Co. (Holyoke, MA), has won the 2020 AIMCAL Product of the Year Award.* The Assn. of International Metallizers, Coaters and Laminators (Greenville, SC) presented the award today during a special Virtual Awards presentation. The AIMCAL Awards Webinar replaced the traditional Awards Ceremony, planned for the trade group’s Executive Leadership Conference in March, which was canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic.
An AIMCAL member company that operates on hydroelectric power, Hazen Paper converted the custom Artic Blue Gin hologram of the aurora borealis, which shimmers and flares in the background. 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-metallized layer. The ultra-thin coating layer provides visual impact typical of much thicker structures. Other elements in the eye-catching Nordic scene include a pine tree overhanging a frozen lake. After designing the hologram, Hazen replicated it with its Envirofoil transfer-metallizing 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.
Judge were impressed by the graphics and registration of the embossing. “The holography really grabs one’s attention,” commented one judge. “It’s a visually compelling package,” agreed another member of the panel.
The judging teleconference, moderated by AIMCAL Executive Director Chris Kerscher, included experts in converting and packaging: Larry Jopko, principal of Stickum Consultancy LLC (Houston, TX); Robert M. Kimmel, Sc.D., associate professor, dir.-Packaging Science Program, dir.-Center for Flexible Packaging, Department of Food, Nutrition and Packaging Sciences, Clemson University (Clemson, SC); and Jeff Weber, package application mgr.-Scholle IPN (Northlake, IL).
The AIMCAL Product of the Year Award is part of the annual AIMCAL Awards program, which also includes Technology of the Year and Sustainability Award competitions and the new AIMCAL Hall of Honor. Scroll to the bottom to watch the 2020 AIMCAL Awards presentation video.
More info: www.hazen.com, www.metsaboard.com, www.amlitho.com, www.aimcal.org
Three Product Excellence recognitions also were given by the judges. Top winner Hazen Paper received a second award for its setup carton for a gift box for Woman by Ralph Lauren. The packaging consists of two weights of solid bleached sulfate (SBS) paperboard laminated to 48-gauge matte and gloss metallized polyester. The metallized 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 personal-care products inside.
Judges noted the box provides a striking appearance and makes good use of metallized film inside and out. “It’s very appealing,” said one member of the panel. “Although complicated, it’s a well-thought-out, cohesive design and well-engineered.”
More info: www.hazen.com
Judges pronounced the package beautiful and were particularly impressed by the high-definition printing and surface texture. “Conventional surface printing does not permit 360° coverage,” commented one judge. “This is a departure from traditional tubes,” agreed another panel member.
More info: www.flexfilm.com, www.uflexltd.com
Judges liked the indulgent feel that the matte coating provides and its sustainable aspects. “Color fidelity is superior,” observed one judge. Another panelist noted, “Since it’s a coating, it can be used in-register to provide a combination of matte and gloss elements.”
More info: www.dow.com/en-us/industries/packaging
* The 2020 Product of the Year Award posthumously honors the late Peter Rigney, former publisher of Paper, Film and Foil Converter and a long-time champion of the competition