Feature Markets - Flexible Packaging Inks

Flexible Packaging Inks

Flexible packaging is a constantly growing segment within the printing inks market. The preferred printing technologies are flexo and gravure printing, with regional preferences for the one or the other.

Regarding the ink technology, solvent-borne inks have the highest market share, while radiation-curing and water-borne ink systems are also readily available on the market, but not as widely used. The segment is divided into three main drivers:
  • Regulatory topics such as the Swiss Ordinance 
  • Performance topics like retortability and lamination-bond strength 
  • Commercial topics like price-performance ratio and total cost of formulation
In the field of high-performance solvent-borne printing inks for lamination applications, the use of PU resins is quite common due to their positive influence on lamination-bond strength. However, some shortcomings are associated with the use of these resins, the most prominent being the negative effect they have on the viscosity of pigment bases when used as a grinding medium.
TEGO® Dispers 690 was especially developed to overcome this challenge. It achieves excellent viscosity reduction and pigment stabilization in combination with typical PU-resin qualities and is highly compatible with other binders like NC-resins. Its performance is especially good in combination with TEGO® VariPlus 1201 TF co-binders. Moreover, it fulfills the most stringent of regulatory demands by consisting of 100% Swiss Ordinance A materials.

Other TEGO® additives like the TEGO® Foamex defoamers or the TEGO® Glide surface-control additives are used to fine-tune ink performance and ink-film properties and thus play an important role in modern ink formulations.
Type of raw material
Evonik brand
Typical use
Defoamer/deaerator
TEGO®
Foamex;
TEGO®
Airex
Defoaming and deaeration of printing inks and lacquers
Dispersing additive
TEGO®
Dispers
Pigment wetting and stabilization in bases; viscosity reduction; color-intensity enhancement; grinding-efficiency enhancement
Surface control additives 
TEGO®
Glide
Control slip and/or leveling of printing inks and lacquers
Substrate wetting additives
TEGO®
Wet
Additives to influence the static and/or dynamic surface tension of printing inks and lacquers and to wet critical substrates
Radiation curing additives
TEGO®
Rad
Additives to control leveling and/or slip and release properties in radiation-curing printing inks and lacquers
Rheology additives
TEGO®
ViscoPlus
Stabilization of viscosity and transfer enhancement in water-based printing inks
Co-binders
TEGO®
VariPlus;
TEGO®
Addbond
Co-binders to enhance properties like adhesion, gloss, and chemical resistance; grinding resins to lower viscosity and enhance pigment stabilization
Matting agents
SIPERNAT®
ACEMATT®
 
Silica-based fillers to influence matting of printing inks and lacquers
 
Evonik Technical Service experts can help you to optimize your formulation by providing recommendations or through lab work or joint development projects.