Cincinnati-based global flexible packaging leader ProAmpac this week opened its new, state-of-the-art Collaboration & Innovation Center in Ogden.
“This is ProAmpac’s new home for product development, rapid sample prototyping and evaluation of new packaging, as well as a training hub for customers and employees,” said ProAmpac Founder and CEO Greg Tucker.
Tucker said the new 35,000-square-foot CIC offers three unique capabilities to help customers address their packaging challenges:
• The Design and Sample Lab (DASL), a customer collaboration, teaming resource that has been ideating and designing new packaging concepts and printed prototype samples since 2014. The new lab was relocated from its former home in Ohio.
• The Packaging Lab, enabling product developers to evaluate and combine advanced materials for performance and sustainability. The lab is equipped for filling trials and testing, shelf-life studies, packaging-testing and sizing for stability testing and pouching studies.
• The Analytical and Physical Packaging Lab is a centralized corporate physical and analytical testing resource. Previously, this work was done at multiple ProAmpac production facilities and is now centralized, with new testing capabilities, in Rochester. The lab holds environmental chambers for hard-to-hold testing, as well as new upgraded analytical testing capabilities including SEM, FTIR, and DCS for film analysis.
The CIC was constructed on ProAmpac’s Rochester campus and adjoins the existing production facility — one of the company’s nearly 50 global manufacturing sites. ProAmpac has more than 5,800 employees, supplying more than 5,000 customers in 90 countries, officials noted.
“ProAmpac’s new Collaboration & Innovation Center will create up to 40 new good jobs and spur innovation in Monroe County,” said Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul, who was in Rochester Wednesday for the facility’s opening. “New York State is proud to attract and support companies like ProAmpac that are manufacturing important products right here in Rochester as we build back stronger and more sustainable than ever.”
Empire State Development is assisting ProAmpac’s innovative project with a $ 350,000 capital grant and up to $1 million through the Excelsior Jobs Program in exchange for job creation commitments. New York Power Authority, which already is providing 140 kilowatts of low-cost power through the ReCharge NY program to the firm to retain its existing jobs, is supporting the expansion project with an additional 40-kilowatt RNY power allocation. Monroe County and Greater Rochester Enterprise also are assisting the company.
The total project cost was placed at $8 million.
“ProAmpac’s Collaboration and Innovation Center opening in the Greater Rochester, New York, region is a testament to the extensive packaging expertise, talent and world-class R&D resources available here,” said GRE President and CEO Matt Hurlbut. “Rochester, New York’s long history of innovation in this sector will support ProAmpac’s goal to develop and prototype new packaging solutions for its clients.”
Established six years ago, ProAmpac ranks as the second-largest North American packaging company based on flexible packaging revenue. It ranks number one in flexible packaging innovation, number one for the breadth of flexible materials and number one in sustainable packaging options, according to Tucker.
“Our CIC is a one-stop center providing our customers with a resource that helps them address their packaging product development needs including product design, testing, graphic design and filling. I am confident this facility will help greatly reduce the time required to go from concept to commercialization,” said Adam Grose, chief commercial officer.
CIC is the permanent home for LEAD ProAmpac Academy, where ProAmpac offers customers and employees twice-a-year training in extrusion, lamination, printing and other flexible-packaging technologies, especially sustainability.
“ProAmpac’s Collaboration & Innovation Center demonstrates the company’s ongoing commitment to Monroe County by boosting the local manufacturing sector and providing top-quality jobs,” said ESD Acting Commissioner and President & CEO-designate Eric Gertler. “Forward-thinking projects like this one, creating a hub in the region for global packaging design, will help to ensure a more sustainable future for New York.”