The company has launched a new version of its QA-I toner in spot red and orange at the expo. The spot colours feature a vastly improved light fastness up to a level of six on the blue wool scale. In addition, both colours now meet FDA food safety requirements for both direct and indirect dry food contact.
When the company first released the QA-I toner in 2009, it raised the bar for digital colour print toners to new heights. Uniquely developed for the label and packaging market, the new DA-1 toner featured major advances in colour gamut, fast lightness and food safety. It was initially released in the standard CMYK process colours along with a defined series of off-the-shelf spot colours being orange, green, red, blue, extra magenta, clear and white.
At this time, however, the performance of spot orange and red lagged slightly behind the rest of the family in both light fastness and food safety. Since that initial release, the toner R&D group at Xeikon has continued to optimise the pigments used in the toner and have now updated both colours to be in line with its traditionally high standards.
Red and orange are both used a lot in the chemical industry, said Filip Weymans, Marketing & Business Development Manager, Labels & Packaging at Xeikon. For example, warning signs placed on the outside of large drums carrying potentially dangerous contents typically use these two colours and these high visibility labels are often exposed to UV light for long periods of time. With the light fastness of both colours now lifted to six on the blue wool scale, labels created with uprated QA-I spot toners will easily meet the demanding requirements of this market.
During the same period, the R&D team also focused directly on improving the food safety performance of the two new QA-I spot colours – when first released, these two colours just met the FDA requirements for indirect food contact. By optimising the colour pigments, these new spot colours now fully meet FDA requirement for both indirect and direct dry food contact.
The raised performance of both light fastness and food safety of these two uprated spot colours enables label printers to broaden the range of applications they can offer, added Weymans.