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Stratus Packaging embraces innovation and automation to deliver more than just labels

When you first visit Stratus Packaging, their claim is clear: “Dress up your packaging”. And when you engage with Isidore Leiser, their CEO, he will quickly tell you how they do it.

“We invest in innovation to support our clients who want to do new things which require advanced technology," he says. ​ “We not only deliver labels but services and customized advice.”

With 350 employees generating more than 65 million euros of turnover, Stratus Packaging integrates all the labels you can imagine – self-adhesive, booklet, dry peel coupons multilabel, sleeves and in-mould labels. So far so good, but what make Stratus special is their strong focus on quality and sustainability.

Quality is an important word for Isidore. It encompasses print quality, finishing details, color matching and the ability to deliver to their clients, no matter what. Stratus has back-up capabilities using multiple sites, meaning that if one site can’t process a job for any reason, it will be done in another site. This sound logical but requires a finely tuned process to manage the workflow on any site and on any press.

To assist them in their drive for quality, innovation and customer service, Stratus recently acquired two BOBST M5 flexo presses. These provide the company with high volume printing capabilities on two distinct sites for back-up purposes with the same printing quality, independent of the press operators.

“The BOBST M5 press and its oneECG system build on the Extended Color Gamut principle,” says Isidore. “Because it is a fully automatized system, called DigiFlexo, it makes print pressure pre-set and register adjustments fully automated. This leads to reduced waste during set up, particularly with multi-color jobs, and consistent printing quality during production. The BOBST DigiFlexo with ECG is an amazing solution. Our clients know that we support their creativity with innovative production platforms such as the BOBST presses.”

When referring to the company’s current pain points, it is no surprise that Isidore refers to sustainability. Waste management is becoming more important than ever, especially with the increasing prices of substrates. The BOBST presses are very beneficial in this aspect too, as they use less substrate waste for each new job set up. In addition, the ECG system reduces ink usage with no washing, no liquid waste, and no ink kitchen. This efficiency was very appealing to Isidore, who added that the company needs to continue focusing on reducing waste, not only during the printing process but also with embellishment and finishing.

Isidore relies on his BOBST M5 flexo presses for long to medium runs and is fully equipped with advanced digital presses for shorter runs. A key challenge he sees ahead is around optimizing the entire production floor. Ideally, each specific job would be sent to the most appropriate press based on all the elements required – ink usage, waste, turnaround time and profitability, all with the same quality and no compromise between digital and flexo.

Looking ahead, Isidore will continue to look out for innovations that can make a real difference. “2022 was a great year but a complex one,” he says. “We navigated through it successfully thanks to our high levels of automation and the ability to manage our supply chain and the excellence of our highly-trained staff.”

Isidore believes that data management will grow in the future, and that labels are a good vehicle to manage various information and data. When looking at other industries, label converters need to be ready for a new reality where machines will become more automated and intelligent, and BOBST is ready to help its customers – like Stratus Packaging - to embrace this new reality.