15 TH ANNIVERSARY OF CORRUGATED PLANT OF KCPM
Oleksiy Katyshev, director of the corrugated cardboard factory in Kiev, telling about the formation and development of the enterprise.
Kiev Cardboard and Paper Mill started making corrugated boxes 15 years ago. How did the production begin? At the end of the 90th, the shares of the Kiev CPM were bought by the Pulp Mill Holding Austrian company. The new leadership decided to build a corrugated box production. At that time the packaging market was actively developing, and at the same time the company had several important competitive advantages: vertical integration – the use of its own raw material for the production of corrugated cardboard, as well as the advantageous territorial situation – the absence of similar manufactures in the central part of the country.
In 2002, the first stage of production of corrugated cardboard with the capacity of 100 million square meters was put into operation. Lines for making corrugated boxes with a capacity of 60 million square meters were installed. From the beginning, the plant was equipped with new equipment by the best European manufacturers, which greatly helped us achieve good results. The positive experience of launching the first line gave impetus to the further development of the corrugated cardboard production at all companies of Pulp Mill Holding. In a few years, we completely loaded the corrugated board with orders. There was a question wheather production should be expanded, as the demand for corrugated packaging was steady, the country’s economy developed annually, corrugated packaging actively replaced other types of packaging, and our decision to expand this direction and start construction of the second line was quite obvious.
In 2007, the second line of the corrugated card factory was opened. This part of the plant was designed and constructed taking into account all the requirements of the corrugated production to the premises.
From the point of view of equipment placement, intra-logistics is difficult to imagine a better place. And, as in the case of the first line, the second line was equipped with the equipment by the best European manufacturers. Now these two sites – the first and second turn, represent a single production complex – the largest plant for the production of corrugated packaging in Ukraine, with a total production capacity of more than 330 million square meters of corrugated boxes per year.
How is the equipment and modernization of corrugated production today? Recently, a flat die cut line for the production of corrugated boxes – Bobst Vision 160 – was installed. The situation in the country and the economy obliges to be extremely careful when choosing and purchasing equipment, so we wanted to get symbiosis between technological reliability and functionality and a fairly short return
of investment. Bobst Vision 160 has been chosen – this machine suits us with its performance.
We decided to launch a new unit of equipment in several stages. On the first phase, we installed the crucible by Bobst and a reliable peripheral by the Duecker company: a prefeeder robot, a breaker and palletiser robot. In addition, the company has a Duecker transportation system installed. At the moment, the equipment is already almost completely loaded. And this year, in order to increase the flexibility in executing customer orders, we plan to upgrade the machine with several print sections. In the plans of the enterprise is an installation of a number of lines. Analyzing the market of corrugated boxes and its trends in the world, we consider the installation of another line of die cutting and line of point gluing in the near future. In addition, we plan to re-equip the first phase of the plant. Now the market places new demands on the quality of products produced, the number of orders, and the speed of line redistribution. In view of this, we plan to replace the two old machines with a new one, while it will completely replace the two old ones in terms of speed and quality. We are also seriously targeting the modernization of carton making machine and investing in this direction. We installed a press pad on carton making machine-2, which produces a corrugated packaging liner. As a result, they received good indicators of energy saving and improved the quality characteristics of the liner.
When will KCPM start digital printing on a corrugated card? At the moment, we are looking at the digital printing equipment, which is now at a good quality level. But so far, just look, there are still deterrents: the price of equipment and paints, limited print head life. It is quite possible that the following printing machine will be digital.
What is done on KCPM to increase the efficiency of corrugated production? I believe that in our production we can reduce losses. There is where we can improve in the matter of the efficiency of equipment operation, the cuttings management, the defect reduction and the production organization. We have become more careful about the efficiency of processes at all stages.
At present, the company has developed and implemented programs of lean manufacturing, measures to reduce losses and increase the efficiency of work. In addition, in order to optimize planning and production management in the near future, we plan to install the new software.
What are the trends now in the market? So far, there are no really serious changes in the market of corrugated packaging. There is only a certain revival. But in general, in order for there to be any global changes in both consumption volumes and the structure of consumption of corrugated containers, certain changes must occur at the country level.
Firstly, for the serious growth of consumption of corrugated packaging, the arrival of investors and the opening of new enterprises – potential consumers of corrugated packaging are needed. Now we see only some new projects that are not mass.
Secondly, it is necessary to increase the purchasing power of the population, which will indirectly affect and increase the consumption of corrugated packaging, and its structure. Regarding the packaging structure when analyzing and comparing the packaging of various products in our and European markets, we see significant differences associated with the application of large volumes of plastic and polymer materials in our market instead of more environmentally friendly corrugated packaging used in the European market. In addition, there are more and more advertising features of corrugated packaging using white paperboard and multi-color printing. In our market the basis of all the same is put optimization and obtaining maximum savings. The trend is now that customers who use white cardboard are starting to use brown for the sake of economy, while in Europe it is vice versa. There, according to our observations, in the supermarket, in about 60% of cases, white coated cardboard is used in packaging. As for local trends in our market, here it is necessary to note the following: the further increase in the volume of consumption of complex die-cutting, the increase in consumption of SRP packaging, an increase in the requirements for the quality of the supplied packaging and a decrease in the number of lots ordered.
Where does the initiative to create a new designer package come from?
Probably, this is first and foremost a customer-consumer of packaging. But, as a rule, most customers are mostly interested only in delivering products intact. As far as the package is convenient for purchase, not many companies eventually analyzes it. And the locomotive here is the international companies that simply use the solutions already thrown in the western markets. Here, probably, more and more pressure on manufacturers of various goods will be provided by networks that are directly interested in the convenience of purchasing goods, reducing the cost of intranet and internal logistics and, in the final analysis, the speed of turnover of goods.