Smurfit Kappa rolls out the Board Referee to global operations

Smurfit Kappa has today announced the roll out of the ‘Board Referee’, which is exclusively developed across all of its production sites in Europe, as part of a commitment to bring customers cutting edge innovation throughout its operations.

The pioneering Board Referee was designed by Smurfit Kappa’s Development Centre in the Netherlands and continues the company’s practice of using insight, applied expertise and measurement to develop high-performance packaging products.

The Board Referee is the latest in a long line of corrugated board innovations from the company, which is recognised for being the first to apply the ‘Three Point Bending’ theory (TPB) to packaging. This led to a revolution in how corrugated board is composed and flutes are designed.  It also follows the application of insights from the aeronautic industry to develop Paper-to-Box, recognised as the packaging industry’s most advanced performance prediction tool.

The Board Referee builds on this legacy, allowing the packaging firm to measure the performance of corrugated board using TPB theory. TPB provides Smurfit Kappa with data on the bending strength of the corrugated board used in packaging, so that it can be developed and improved accordingly.

Ultimately, this guarantees that the board used in the stacking and storage of boxes is perfectly optimised for its purpose – providing customers with packaging that is strong enough to carry the load of the product and stack, while using the least amount of raw materials possible, delivering a solution that is both efficient and sustainable.

By ensuring that the Board Referee is available in all its production sites, Smurfit Kappa is able to gather board performance results immediately, in real-time. It provides the packaging firm with greater insight and understanding of the quality of packaging materials, complementing its use of its other ‘InnoTools’ such as Paper-to-Box and Pack Expert.

Arco Berkenbosch, V.P. Research and Development,Smurfit Kappa, said, “This industry-first technology is perfectly suited to our customers’ needs, allowing us to  develop packaging that utilises the full potential of paper in the most efficient and sustainable way possible. This is further evidence of how our expertise and relentless commitment to innovation and ingenuity continues to offer tangible benefits for our customers.”

“The Board Referee means that we will be able to measure the performance of 50,000 products each month, giving us a unique ability to make rapid improvements to packaging board where necessary. This is part of our commitment to ensuring customers receive high performance packaging, informed by smart insight and measurement.”

Walter De Smedt, V.P. Technical & Operational Excellence at Smurfit Kappa, said “We’re delighted to announce the use of the Board Referee across our operations, which will be vital in ensuring we’re able to continue to develop consistently high quality products. The use of Three Point Bending across all our production facilities will help to drive the packaging industry towards production processes that focus on the needs of the end-user, whereby the board is perfectly suited for use.”

The use of the Board Referee is another example of how Smurfit Kappa is set to ‘Open the future’ for its customers.  The new strategy focuses on delivering customer growth through insight and innovation.  It is brought to life through a dynamic microsite, where a series of films demonstrate how customers across the world have worked in partnership with Smurfit Kappa to create innovative solutions which have driven commercial success.  The new microsite can be visited at openthefuture.info, the home for new, shareable content which is updated regularly.