In launching a new beverage choice for families with children, Drink Blocks LLC opted for containers that become both a collective toy and bilingual learning tool. This new kids’ beverage concept takes interactive packaging to new heights.
Each bottle of naturally flavored water features patent-pending molded-in interlocking nubs and grooves on both sides that connect securely with other Drink Block bottles to let children build almost anything they can imagine. It’s actually a Lego-like building block. Each bottle is also an educational aid with bi-lingual (English and Spanish) letters, numbers or words, encouraging consumers to collect them all and build vast structures after finishing the drink. Everything is recyclable.
Because Drink Blocks wanted to feature different learning series (alphabet, numbers and words) on their labels, they needed a cost effective print solution. With traditional flexo printing, the high cost of plates becomes more critical as the number of image changes increases.
The unique attribute of the job is that the pressure sensitive labels ran on Hammer’s VSOP (Variable Sleeve Offset Printing) Press. The offset technology not only allowed us to hold better highlight/shadow details vs. a traditional flexo press, but we were able to run varied designs around the print cylinder that can change for every print run. Because we are making new plates every single run, we can change the group combination however desired by the customer. That is the biggest challenge that we were able to overcome.
Our increasing level of corporate assets also gives us a wider range of flexibility. Specifically, once the rolls are off the roll-fed press (33.5”), the rolls are slit in half on a wide web slitter, and then put on our new Digicon finishing unit where the labels are die-cut. Long-term, this piece of equipment will also allow us to slit the roll in to individual lanes – reducing the amount of production steps required to process the job.