Reflecting on 2017

by Jackie Kuehlmann

As 2017 winds down, it seems like a good time to reflect on the year. 2017, as with most years at Inland Packaging, was one of forward momentum and change. If there is something that is always constant for us, it is change. Our President and CEO, Mark Glendenning frequently tells us that he is “often happy, but never satisfied.” That mindset of we can always improve is apparent across our organization and what drives us.

2017 was a record year for Inland. Our team was recognized for 19 industry awards across product categories, including our first award for our newest product type – Flexible Packaging. These awards are a testament to attention that the Inland team gives each and every label and flexible package that we produce. It also shows what can be done when you have a great partnership. We have the best customers and because we have such close relationships with them, we are able to work together to create award winning labels and packaging and we love nothing more than to showcase the gorgeous labels and packaging that they create with industry awards such as these.

With four plant locations in the United States, two in La Crosse, WI, one in Neenah, WI and a fourth plant in Downingtown, PA Inland now has over 400 employees who support our customers and produce over 26 billion labels and flexible packages annually. This is the largest the Inland family has ever been and we are so happy to have expanded into the Neenah and Downingtown communities.

12 Inland employees were certified by the Flexographic Tehnical Association (FTA), the world’s leading professional society dedicated to the advancement of flexographic printing processes. FIRST certification recognizes expert proficiency within a specific area of flexographic workflow. Inland congratulated 7 Prepress Operators and 5 Press Operators for receiving their FIRST certifications following a 30 week course. Inland now has a total of 21 FIRST certified operators on our team.

In April Inland joined the Sustainable Packaging Coalition as a converter member. SPC membership supports our drive to stay connected with supply chain partners, stay on top of trends within the markets we serve and stay relevant to our customers all while being a responsible environmental steward. The SPC is an industry working group dedicated to a more robust environmental vision for packaging and Inland is proud to be a part of this conversation.

In June, we achieved G7® Master Qualification. Inland joined a select group of printers who successfully completed training, an examination and qualification process of their print productions processes, and validation of their capabilities to the highest level of global industry standards and specifications. G7 is the base of our InColor color management program which aids in color consistency across multiple platforms.

We were also very excited to install our first HP 20000 press at our Neenah facility. This state-of-the-art digital press gives our customers more flexibility with graphics allowing them to stay more relevant to customers as well as incorporate customized content which drives engagement with the brand.

2017 also brought us many new customers – who are now a part of the Inland family!

As you close out your year, we wish you and your family a very happy and safe holiday season and very much look forward to a prosperous 2018.