Leading UK label manufacturer adopts Fujifilm’s water washable Flenex plates following successful trial in May 2021
Established in 1993, Aztec Label manufactures a huge range of self-adhesive labels and tags in a variety of colours, sizes and quantities for customers in the UK and abroad. The company has been growing steadily since its founding and now employs 25 people at its West Midlands facility and turns over £3.6 million annually.
“The key demands our customers place on us are quality and speed of delivery,” says Colin Le Gresley, Managing Director, Aztec Label. “Whatever the industry, whether it’s food and beverage; pharma and medical; household and personal care; automotive or any number of other sectors – all of our customers are looking for consistently high-quality and reliably prompt delivery. To make sure we’re meeting those expectations, we’re always on the lookout for technological solutions that will help us to improve, and that’s why we decided to trial Fujifilm’s Flenex FW water-washable plates.
“We’d been having some issues with the plate material from our previous supplier, and Fujifilm’s Flenex solution looked like a promising alternative to us. We already had a strong working relationship with Fujifilm, having used their inks for some time, and the Flenex trial was an instant success, immediately remedying the problems we were facing. We achieved excellent plate washout in half the time with no sludge build up in the processor. Platemaking is faster now, and there are far fewer plate failures, so it was an easy decision.”
Aztec is no stranger to water washable plate technology, having been making water wash plates for nearly a decade, part of the company’s commitment to sustainability and the environment. Aztec also made a massive investment in solar power several years ago with the installation of solar panels across the factory roof as part of a £250,000 refurbishment. The company was also an early adopter of the BPIF ‘Zero Labels 2 Landfill’ scheme in 2017. “The Flenex investment is yet another step in helping us to continue to be a sustainable pre-press and print supplier,” says Le Gresley.
Andy Kent, Divisional Manager Fujifilm Graphic Systems UK says: “Flenex FW plates provide both exceptional print quality and productivity, while significantly lowering the cost-in-use compared to thermal, solvent or even other water-wash alternatives. We’re delighted to bring this technology to Aztec Label, both helping them to improve their service to customers, and further enhance their environmental credentials.”
A Fujifilm C-Touch processor and new Fujifilm UV-LED JJ inks also form part of the investment. Le Gresley credits the processor with further time savings to the platemaking process and is impressed so far with the performance of the inks.