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Environmental breakthrough as Manson goes process-less with plates

The Manson Group, the St Albans-based magazine printer, has migrated to Process Free Printing Plates following successful trials in the spring.

Environmental breakthrough as Manson goes process-less with plates
Neil Wass: “We have simplified operation, reduced waste and made energy savings all in one – it’s a win on all fronts.”

The move boosts Manson’s tight turnaround capabilities in tandem with their Heidelberg XL generation presses and is part of a broader refocus on environmental matters, says the company.

“It’s a big decision,” says Managing Director Neil Wass. “But having looked at our options, we felt the technology had matured sufficiently and there was genuine choice in the market.”

The switch means that hundreds of litres of processor waste every month have been eliminated from the St Albans factory and plates can be imaged using 20% less energy with faster production.

Having reviewed and tested multiple options, the company opted for Kodak’s Sonora X: “It was the clearest image on the plate,” explains Martin Sheldrake, operations manager. “With the volumes we produce, ease of identification plays a big part. A huge part of our business is short run so we’re frequently changing sections every few minutes.”

The new workflow is accompanied by a new Magnus 800 platesetter unit to increase capacity and it also frees up an older model to use as back-up at times of peak demand.

Minor modifications were made to the platemaking area to create a safe light storage space but the transition has required little else in terms of adaptation. “It’s fair to say that the sceptics have been silenced,” continues Wass. “We have simplified operation, reduced waste and made energy savings all in one – it’s a win on all fronts.”

You can find out more about The Manson Group in our Publishing Services Directory.

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