Innovation, sustainability, and the human factor: the keys to Laminati Cavanna's success

One of Italy's leading subcontractors, Laminati Cavanna celebrates 55 years of success in laminate film  production. Its dedication to offering innovative solutions, flexibility, speed, and its investments in sustainability make this company one of a kind.

Chair Anna Paola Cavanna gave us the low-down on their latest news.

 “Laminati Cavanna was founded on 15 April 1969 by my father Giancarlo Cavanna, working from an idea that is still relevant today, i.e. being a subcontractor in the flexible packaging segment. A business model at the service of Italian and international converters, which come to us for the bonding stage in the production of multilayer laminate film. Over the years, we have set up a slitting department and also introduced a reel slitting and inspection service, employing machine-mounted  single and double-vision cameras. The entire production site, including the slitting department, is ISO 9001:2015- certified  and BRC Packaging-compliant and we also expect to obtain ISO 14001 certification in 2025. Going back to the company's core business, we have six lamination lines, two BOBST double solvent lines, one NORDMECCANICA triple solvent line, and three NORDMECCANICA solventless lines. With equipment of this calibre, we can offer high production capacity and flexibility including adhesive coating fields ranging from 300 mm to 1550 mm and the ability to handle a vast range of film weights. When choosing our systems and their setups, we have always focused on full optional machines with a view to meeting both current and future needs so as not to exclude ourselves from any existing, emerging, or even still embryonic business areas. As a result of this approach, we are equipped with interchangeable flexographic and rotogravure carriages on all the coating units, rotogravure cylinders featuring from 100 to 18 lines to apply wet products (adhesives, heat sealers, antifog, barrier lacquers, etc.)  weighing from 1 to 32 gsm,  corona treatment units on all the unwinders on each line (with the possibility of treating either corona or the side of the film that is coupled or the outer side), continuous coating control systems such as cameras and IR meters for isocyanate on the lines.”

Confidentiality, specialist expertise, and partnerships to provide advanced services

In addition to its extensive technology base, Laminati Cavanna also offers customers a backup service, which Anna Paola Cavanna outlined to us: “Over the years, we have always focussed investments on expanding processing through equipment upgrades, offering customers the chance to type-approve our lines for their processing. This way, customers can test and therefore approve lines already operating at Laminati Cavanna (featuring the equivalent machinery  to their own in terms of configurations, recipes, and settings) so that they have a second line they can use for backup in the event of peak work flows, maintenance, or repairs. Laminati Cavanna provides converters with an enhanced, confidential, fast, and flexible supply service, complete with the necessary infrastructure, policies, and certifications to handle and protect sensitive data, such as customer specifications, production recipes, and line settings.

We produce approximately 130,000,000 m² of material each year, for markets ranging from food (approximately 40%) to cosmetics and pharmaceuticals (approximately 15%), from industry (25% with photovoltaic, cable shielding, electrical insulators) to various other areas (credit cards, sails, audio speakers, decorative tapes, labels, etc.).

We work actively with  the main adhesive manufacturers such as Coim, Henkel, Dow, BASF, Sun Chemical, and Huber to test products. As a result of this active collaboration arrangement  we have become a testing and sampling centre for leading suppliers, thereby facilitating type-approval activities. Growing areas within our business include photovoltaics, credit cards, cable coating, demonstrating our capacity to manage the most diverse laminate film processes and not  just packaging.

We are a customer service-oriented company with a significant production capacity. With production arranged over a double-shift schedule and the work of 55 people, we can handle and process volumes in the region of 50 tonnes per day and 250-300 tonnes per week. Our investments and commitment to quality have enabled us to achieve a growing turnover in subcontracting. This success is driven by innovative technologies and the capability to perform both solvent and solventless lamination, including water-based methods. We are also developing technologies and knowledge to implement paints and lacquer coatings  to endow materials with specific properties, such as waterproofing for paper, anti-fog properties, oxygen or humidity barrier, etc.

Flexibility and the ability to adapt to market needs also affect  our technology choices, as was  the case when we upgraded our inspection systems through the adoption of solutions such as IR meters for production monitoring. “With the Synaptic Easysnap system,” Anna Paola Cavanna continued, “we continuously scan the coating field to measure the amount of isocyanate present, so that we are certain of the adhesive gsm. Our next investment will  focus on adapting production to the needs of a key customer that has asked us to align our fault monitoring systems with theirs.

One service that customers particularly appreciate is our stock consignment option which includes an initial 30-day period offered free of charge.  This arrangement allows customers to purchase the materials they need gradually or in any case based on their purchasing capacity and we then produce the multilayer laminate film when all these materials are available to go into the machine. Applying this model, we receive the order and carry out the processing in a short space of time, but then keep the materials in stock until they are needed by the customers for subsequent processing. Another aspect of particular note is that we can also provide in-house customs clearance services, because part of the warehouse is customs-approved for shipping abroad."

To complete the range of services offered, Laminati Cavanna also offers a grinding service for rubber-coated cylinders and sleeves which delivers high-quality results for both customers and the company alike.

"In 2019, we also introduced a grinding service employing a highly advanced ROSSINI machine" continued Anna Paola Cavanna "with a view to keeping our base of cylinders and sleeves in perfect condition so that adhesive coatings are always optimal. This has significantly reduced the level of complaints and non-conformities and we offer customers the same service as on contract. “

Innovation, sustainability, and the human factor: the key to the future


Moving on to digitalisation, Laminati Cavanna has implemented a major upgrade, in line with the “Industry 4.0” model, by interconnecting machines and systems for full production monitoring, an aspect which Ms Cavanna went on to describe: “in addition to the monitoring processes, we are also aiming to streamline production  to render it more sustainable. This issue is very close to our hearts, as evidenced by our recent investment in a solvent recovery plant  installed in 2023, which allows us to recover the ethyl acetate we use when mixing adhesives and reuse it internally, as part of a circular economy approach. The ethyl acetate derived from this process is of the highest quality and allows us not only to reduce the environmental impact of our production but also to decrease our customers' carbon footprint. Based on the mix of processes we manage, we guarantee constant, high-quality production through specific testing conducted in our fully equipped laboratory which also issues the respective certificates to ensure full production traceability. This is an important investment not only for the company but also for the community within which we operate; at a recent meeting held by CONFAPI  (within which I hold the office of deputy chair with responsibility for sustainability), I addressed an audience including institutions, mayors, and business owners and highlighted the concept of social, economic, and environmental sustainability with reference to a system that is the only one of its kind locally. "

Ipack-Ima: a key to networking


Given the success of the 2022 show, which was the first time Laminati Cavanna exhibited, expectations for Ipack-Ima this year are high. “The last Ipack-Ima was very satisfying for us, creating synergies with the Italian Packaging Institute and the Ethical Packaging Paper Foundation (where I was chair at the time), suppliers, institutions, and stakeholders. The chair continued: “Many visitors chose to use our stand as a meeting point, confirming that  - unlike other fairs - Ipack-Ima is the ideal event for networking. I would like to make Stand 2025 a space for conferences and debates on the issues that are important to us, perhaps working in association with the show organisers. Since we do not produce machinery and are not directly on the market with our products, I would like our stand to become a place to meet up with visitors, almost as if they were coming to our home, to exchange ideas and opinions, and discuss needs. Ipack-Ima is certainly a key event for our segment, especially now that everyone is aware of how important it is to meet up and discuss ideas, and this fair is the perfect opportunity for this. Our company is growing along the lines established by the founder, my father, but it is also innovating in synch with market dynamics to provide fast and effective responses.”


Looking to the future


The interview ended with closing comments on market trends, recession, and technological innovation: “2022 was impacted by the great uncertainty linked to the sourcing of raw materials and the cost of energy; 2023, meanwhile, experienced a slow start due to a drop in consumption, but the figures have since stabilised in line with our expectations. Digitalisation and the application of AI, which is increasingly present in production facilities  is, in my opinion, a natural evolution of 4.0  and will have great weight. Factories will therefore become increasingly autonomous, but the support of human operators with their skills will nevertheless be essential alongside the automated equipment. A specialist workforce  remains vital because the awareness, knowledge, and experience of people that still make the difference are fundamental in our sector. I believe in positive innovation, which maintains a balance between digitalisation and the human factor.”