Bofrost* and Fotolito Veneta: a qualitative partnership for flexible packaging

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For almost ten years Bofrost*, giant in the direct sale of frozen foods, has relied on the flexo pre-press service Fotolito Veneta for the plates necessary for printing the packaging for its own brand products, which thanks to Kodak Flexcel NX technology by Miraclon are perfect, with bright colors and sharp texts

The history of Bofrost* Italy, based in San Vito al Tagliamento (PN), giant in the direct sale of frozen foods, begins in 1987 when the entrepreneur Edoardo Roncadin had the intuition to export the model tested by  German Bofrost* to Italy. Thirty-three years of experience, more than 2,400 employees, and a catalog that exceeds 450 references. These are the numbers that distinguish the company which is known and recognized throughout Italy for its characteristic vans and has more than one million families as customers.

Together you can work better
To understand how this relationship was born, we spoke with Michele Muner, packaging manager of Bofrost* Italia. “I remember the first time that Fotolito Veneta company presented itself in Bofrost* and showed me a piece of film printed by one of our printers but with Kodak Flexcel NX plates by Miraclon: I was really impressed by the quality and cleanliness of the print. A result that we had never achieved with the same printer and with systems made with different technologies. We therefore faced the first tests and checks and once they were fully operational we began a fruitful collaboration”. But why is it so important that Bofrost*’s packaging is “clean”? Muner explains to us that, since they sell on catalog, it is essential that when the consumer receives the ordered products, the wow effect is guaranteed immediately, that is, starting from the packaging that wraps them. And the results obtained with Kodak Flexcel NX plates are excellent even with complex graphics: extreme print cleanliness, low dot gain, flawless registration. Fotolito Veneta, based in San Martino Buon Albergo, (VR) takes care of all the pre-press phases from DTP to the production of plates for flexo-printed subjects and print files for offset-printed subjects. Muner points out that “with Fotolito Veneta we also have an exchange of information on the printers we have selected or evaluated, because this phase is very important since Kodak Flexcel NX technology requires that all the actors involved (customer-service-printer) speak the same language and are aligned; I am referring to reproduction curves, color profiles and aniloxes to arrive at a precise characterization of the printing machine that will perform a specific job”. And the works printed with the plates provided by Fotolito Veneta are indeed many, all the subjects printed in flexography (pouches and films): in 2020 about 130 subjects were printed and for 2021 about 250 are expected.

We ask Muner what convinced them to choose Fotolito Veneta. “Really a good question and perhaps the most important one … this service is one of the companies that I call ECTC, that is, a company with Experience, which gives Counseling, which uses superior quality Technology and grows with the Customer. This translates into ‘partnership’, that is, a commonality of interests which for bofrost* Italia is very important “, Muner replies.

With Kodak Flexcel NX plates by Miraclon the quality is at the top
The differences detected by Bofrost* between other technologies and Kodak Flexcel NX technology are basically these: print quality and cleanliness, reduction in start-up times, greater correspondence of the result between the print test and what is actually printed, fewer setting problems for the printing machine, repeatability of reprints thanks to constant quality.

Printers who use the plates supplied by Fotolito Veneta, which uses a Kodak Flexcel NX Wide 5080 and a Kodak Flexcel Wide NX 4260 to produce them, actually find that start-ups are faster, and therefore costs are reduced, because waste and downtime shrink. You can print with a higher ink density and therefore the colors are more saturated and brilliant, even the white is perfect and the image quality improves; the highlights are more stable and cleaner, the color range is wider and there is greater detail in the shadows, texts are also well defined and sharp.

Record growth for Bofrost* during the pandemic
Bofrost* in February 2021 closed the 2020-21 budget with 313 million euros in turnover and a growth of + 31.9% compared to the previous year. The increase in the demand for food shopping at home, due precisely to the pandemic, has produced an increase in turnover in all channels: traditional, telemarketing and the internet. Online sales, in particular, registered a record growth (+ 700%).
The extraordinary situation of the last few months has led Bofrost* to face new difficulties related to the supply chain and logistics. “Having solved the initial critical issues, the choice was to invest in the long term to equip ourselves with a structure suitable for responding to a demand for home shopping that has now become firmly in the habits of Italians, introducing 180 new employees and 200 collaborators to strengthen its commercial network throughout Italy”, explains Muner. For this reason, Bofrost* is adapting its fleet of vehicles and branches (about fifty in Italy) to deliver, in addition to frozen foods, also fresh products at room temperature, which will be increasingly present in the company’s catalog.

A sustainable future
Bofrost* strategies focus on research and development of new products, offering new services to customers, including electronic payments and meal vouchers, blockchain for tracking the supply chain, apps for mobile devices; continuous expansion of the product catalog, with particular attention to proposals that enhance Italian suppliers and Italian food excellence. It is also pursuing the goal of using increasingly eco-sustainable packaging materials for bofrost* brand products and Kodak Flexcel NX technology by Miraclon will prove itself to be good also for these materials.