German printing press manufacturer Koenig & Bauer has conducted a trial to assess the possibility of using MGA inks for packaging printing on a commercial web press.

The MGA series of inks used for this trial has been manufactured and provided by Hubergroup while Koenig & Bauer provided its 16-page C217 commercial web press.

Hubergroup’s mineral-oil-free and low-migration MGA ink series has been designed specifically for the printing of food packaging.

Such inks are also a crucial pre-requisite for heatset printers that are being considered for packaging printing applications, Koenig & Bauer noted.

The latest trial was conducted at a site in Ottersweier, Germany, of the print company B&K Offsetdruck, one of the businesses involved in the test.

This test also involved the participation of experts from ink manufacturer i88 and Koenig & Bauer itself.

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The first round of print tests focused on assessing the performance of inks with coated paper, the type that is mainly used for disposable food packaging.

The trial demonstrated that the press, with and without an additional MGA UV coating, printed at a reduced web speed.

This test resulted in providing required print products without any discernible setoff or drying issues.

A final test run using coated natural paper or 90gsm art paper was carried out to confirm the results.

Koenig & Bauer print technology expert Georg Zitterbart said: “The conclusion after this test series is that, at a reduced web speed, MGA inks perform just like conventional heatset inks and delivered convincing results.”

In addition, the test helped the companies to get a glimpse of the future possible usage of MGA inks for various printing applications, including packaging.

Koenig & Bauer noted that a ministerial decree related to the use of mineral-oil-free processes for production in the French print market has already come into force from 1 January 2023.

These restrictions will be implemented in two steps between this year and 2025.