The Shaftesbury business is one of 13 winners worldwide, coming top in Kodak's southern Europe region. “We are using the plate across three technologies here: conventional sheetfed inkjet, coldset web and LED UV,” says production director Nigel Hunt. “We are probably the only printer in the world with this mix using the plate.”
The Sonora X plate was introduced last year with Blackmore being one of the pilot customers involved in the development phase. It has continued to use the plate since. “The plate is robust which is a big plus because the earlier versions of Sonora were easily scratched,” he says. “We are very proud to have receded this award.”
The big environmental gain has been in saving thousands of litres of water over the course of a year. Hunt says this amounts to 250,000 litres over what was needed to cope with the plates for the different machines. It has also saved on developer and the plastic needed to transport the chemistry for plate processing.
There has also been a space saving. The proofing area has moved into the space previously used by the processors, says Hunt. In turn the company has been able to install a Heidelberg digital press in the now empty space. “It means that we can keep this work in-house rather than send it out,” says Hunt.
There has also been a saving in terms of energy use to add the advantages of LED UV in cutting consumption of coatings and spray powders. Blackmore has also fitted LED lighting throughout the factory.
“There have also been savings because the plate is easier to use. The platesetter does not need resetting in the same way as before,” says Hunt. This translates to greater stability on press and reduced waste levels.
“At Kodak we believe that sustainable printing provides the critical foundation for bolstering business success and each of this year’s Sonora Green Leaf Award winners are once again exemplary examples of how to put this practice in action,” says John O’Grady, president of Kodak's Print Systems Division. “The specific outcomes that each of these printers yields from incorporating more eco-friendly actions into their whole business are quite tangible, from reduced operating costs to measurable increases in key performance metrics that benefit their customers.”
By Gareth Ward
The Sonora X plate is at home on the Rapida LED UV sheetfed press as it is on the Solna coldset web and conventional Komori Lithrone. Switching to the process free plate has freed space that has been filled by a first digital press for the company.
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Since introducing Kodak's Sonora X plate, Blackmore has made savings on water and developing chemicals and associated plastics for transportation. Greater stability on press and reduced waste levels are additional benefits which Blackmore has also enjoyed since it became one of the pilot customers involved in the plate's development phase.
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