Board Converting News, August 15, 2022

BoardConverting Serving the North American Corrugated and Folding Carton Industries for 38 years August 15, 2022 VOL. 38, NO. 33

Volk Packaging Launches Paxit, New Contract Packaging Arm BY LEN PRAZYCH It’s been said that success happens where preparation and opportunity meet. Biddeford, Maine based Volk Packaging Corporation (VPC) has been enjoying the fruits of success for more than 55 years as one of the leading independent corrugated packaging producers in the northeast United States. The company’s consistent ability to meet new oppor- tunities with determined preparation has allowed it to be deemed, as

Hood Container Acquires Kentwood Packaging Inc. Atlanta, Georgia based Hood Container Cor- poration announced that it has acquired the corrugated packaging business of Walker, Michigan based Kentwood Packaging Inc. The transaction includes all of Kentwood’s de- sign, manufacturing, assembly, and fulfilment operations in Walker, including its member- ship in Great Lakes Wax Coatings, LLC. “We have built this business successfully over the last 30 years by creating a custom- er-centric business model,” said Jack Skoog and Tom Boluyt, co-owners of Kentwood Packaging. “Our focus has been to partner and collaborate with our employees, custom- ers, and suppliers. We are excited to be join- ing a family-owned company whose values and culture mirror ours. We will be a stronger partner for our customers with the benefits of Hood’s national footprint and their ability to offer vertical supply chain integration.” Skoog will continue his leadership role as General Manager and Boluyt, will retire after 41 years at Kentwood will. “We have incredi- ble employees and customers, and I have en- joyed working with them over all these years. I think they will benefit from being part of Hood

were fellow box makers, “essential” businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic. When asked to fill the need to package medical supplies, family-owned, third-generation run VPC responded to the call. VPC was contracted to repackage test kit components, a critical supply, and return them to the customer for distribution. “The product actually came to us already boxed, so all we had to do was count them, bundle them, put them back in the same box and send them back to the customer,” says Derek Volk, President and owner-operator of VPC. “We didn’t get any box business out of it and that was fine. What we did realize, however, is that there was a need for someone to provide repackaging, kitting and fulfillment services to companies struggling with labor and logistical challenges. And thus, Volk Paxit was born.” Volk said he’d been looking at doing contract packaging for years as an extension of VPC but was not able to find a secure location CONTINUED ON PAGE 24 Derek and Amy Volk of Biddeford, Maine based Volk Packaging Corporation (VPC) have launched Paxit, a contract packaging company, and expanded operations to a 96,000-square-foot facility in Sanford, Maine.


WHAT’S INSIDE NAM: Hiring Continues Solid Rise In July Greif To Invest $13 Million

6 x x 8 x x 12 x x 26 x x

In South Carolina Expansion AICC Mexico Slates 2022 Annual Meeting In Guadalajara 14 AICC Releases 2022 Salary, Hourly, Wage & Benefit Report

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AVERAGE CONTAINERBOARD PRICES The average prices reported are tabulated from prices PAID by various sources throughout the United States the week previous to issue. Prices in some areas of the country may be higher or lower than the tabulated average. The prices tabulated here are intended only for purposes of reference. They do not connote any commitment to sell any material at the indicated average. Transactions may be completed at any time at a price agreed upon by seller and purchaser.

Tools and tooling – Education or employee incentive programs – Employee retention programs – Efficiency, productivity and safety innovations , and more. Share your innovative ideas! Boxmakers! Entry deadline - Friday, August 19, 2022 Open to all AICC Boxmaker members It’s easy to enter!

REGION E. Coast Midwest Southeast Southwest

42# Kraft liner

26# Semi-Chem. Medium

$1005.00-1010.00 $1020.00-1030.00 $1020.00-1030.00 $1020.00-1030.00 $1050.00-1060.00 $1023.00-1032.00

Short Ton Del. Short Ton Del. Short Ton Del. Short Ton Del. Short Ton Del. Short Ton Del.

$940.00-990.00 $955.00-975.00 $955.00-975.00 $955.00-975.00 $975.00-995.00 $958.00-978.00

West Coast U.S. Average

SHEET PRICES BY REGION (AVERAGE) Per 1MSF, local delivery included, 50MSF single item order, truckload delivery. Sheets

E. Coast Midwest South-SW S. CA N.CA/WA-OR US Aver.

200# 275#



$62.69 $82.80

$85.35 119.54

$73.13 101.29












107.46 118.45

114.69 129.32

116.54 137.25 117.82 145.56

141.08 148.46

122.76 131.80

CANADIAN SHEET PRICES (AVERAGE) In Canadian Dollars, per 1MSF, local delivery included, under 50MSF single item order, truckload delivery. 200# 275# Oyster UC 275#DW 350#DW $78.56 $99.18 $9.00 $96.32 $105.83 CANADIAN LINERBOARD & MEDIUM The average prices reported are tabulated from prices PAID by various sources throughout Canada. Prices may be higher or lower in various areas of the country. The prices tabulated here are intended only for purposes of reference. They do not connote any commitment to sell any material at the indicated average. Transactions may be completed at any time at a price agreed upon by seller and purchaser. Prices are Canadian $ and per metric ton.

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42# Kraft Liner 26#

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August 15, 2022

Hood Container Acquires (CONT’D FROM PAGE 1)

Core Competency

Container.” Boluyt added, “I expect a seamless transition and successful future with Hood.” “Kentwood Packaging has a long history of providing superior products and customer service to the Grand Rap- ids markets,” said Charlie Hodges, President and COO, Hood Container Corporation. “Tom and Jack have created a company that has a culture of strong leadership, care for their employees, and stellar offerings to support and surpass their customers’ needs. The addition of Kentwood will help us to continue to build on those key qualities as we merge Kentwood and our own cultures going forward.” AF&PA Releases Q2 2022 Containerboard Report AF&PA has released its Q2 2022 Containerboard Quarter- ly report. Total Containerboard production in Q2 increased two percent compared to Q2 2021. It was also up two percent when compared to the same six months of 2021. New supply of containerboard (domestic production plus imports) was essentially flat compared to Q2 2021, as well as year-to-date. The Linerboard operating rate in Q2 was 94.3 percent, up 1.5 points from the previous quarter. The Medium operating rate for the quarter was 96 percent, down 0.6 points from Q1 2022.

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August 15, 2022

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NAM: Hiring Continues Solid Rise In July

edged down to 3.5 percent in July, the lowest since Feb- ruary 2020. The labor force participation rate ticked down from 62.2 percent to 62.1 percent and remained well be- low pre-pandemic levels. There were 790,000 manufacturing job openings in June, down for the second straight month from April’s re- cord 1,017,000 postings in the sector but remaining high- ly elevated. Over the past 12 months, job openings in the sector have averaged nearly 865,000. There were 10,698,000 job openings nationally in June, with 5,912,000 unemployed Americans. That translated into 55.3 unemployed workers for every 100 job openings in the US economy, speaking to the extreme tightness of the labor market, even with some recent cooling. New orders for manufactured goods jumped two per- cent from $544.4 billion in May to a record $555.2 billion in June. Excluding transportation equipment, manufacturing orders increased 1.4 percent from $456.1 billion to $462.4

Manufacturing employment increased by 30,000 in July, according to Chad Moutray, Ph.D. and Chief Economist at the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM). The labor market remains a bright spot in an econo- my that has seen softening in other areas. Through the first seven months of 2022, the sector has hired 271,000 employees, building on the 365,000 workers added in cal- endar year 2021, the most since 1994. Currently, the manu- facturing sector has 12,826,000 employees. In addition, the average hourly earnings of production and nonsupervisory workers in manufacturing rose 0.3 percent to $25.09 in July, up five percent from a year ago. Also, 528,000 nonfarm payroll employees added to the US economy in July, and the unemployment rate

billion, an all-time high, with durable goods orders excluding transportation up 0.4 per- cent for the month. New orders for core capital goods (or nondefense capital goods excluding aircraft) — a proxy for capital spending in the US economy — rose 0.7 percent from $73.5 bil- lion in May to a record $74.0 billion in June. Factory orders data speak to continued re- silience in the sector despite worries about the economic outlook and lingering supply chain, workforce and inflationary concerns. Manufacturing activity expanded very modestly in July, but with the ISM® Manufac- turing Purchasing Managers’ Index® slipping to 52.8 in July, the lowest reading since June 2020, and new orders contracted for the second straight month. Visit for more information.

PPC Announces Annual Film Fest

In celebration of achievements in paper- board packaging, the Paperboard Packag- ing Council (PPC) has announced its Annual Associate Member Film Fest, a free oppor- tunity for Associate members to showcase their offerings to PPC’s Principal members. Associates are invited to submit a two-to- three-minute video highlighting their com- pany’s unique attributes and special distinc- tions. Excellent videos can be made in just a few hours with an iPhone. Submit an .avi, .mov, .mpeg2, or .mp4 vid- eo entry by the September 30 deadline. Email with questions. Submit your videos at .


August 15, 2022


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Greif To Invest $13M In SC Expansion

With a focus on sustainability, Greif’s recycling group diverts more than four million tons of materials from the waste stream annually, and its Land Management Group manages over 240,000 acres of forests. Greif’s Greenville facility serves as a paper mill that utilizes recycled paperboard for the production of spiral tubes and cores. The expansion is expected to be com- plete in November of 2022.

According to local media reports, Governor Henry McMas- ter and the South Carolina Department of Commerce an- nounced that Greif, a global leader in industrial packaging products and services, plans to expand existing operations in Greenville County. The company is investing $13 million over the next five years. “We are excited to offer increased capabilities within our Taylors facility,” said Tim Bergwall, Greif Senior Vice President, and Group President of Paper Packaging and Soterra LLC. “Greif’s investment in South Carolina enables us to support our tube and core plants and our customers’ growth in this thriving region of the country.” Greif was founded in Cleveland, Ohio, in 1877. More than 140 years later, the company is strategically located in more than 35 countries to serve its customers in the United States and around the world. The company produc- es steel, plastic, and fibre drums; intermediate bulk con- tainers; containerboard; corrugated packaging; recycled boxboard; tubes; cores, and a variety of other products. “This announcement further proves that South Caro- lina’s talented workforce and pro-business environment allow our companies to thrive,” added McMaster. “We con- gratulate Greif on their expansion project and look forward to working with them as they grow in our state.”

Vendor Partnerships The Topic Of September AICC Webinar

Puhl custom designs systems to meet your needs. • Moving to a new facility? Puhl has experience moving entire plant systems all while minimizing down time in BOTH plants during the transition. • Below roof AND above roof systems custom designed to meet your needs. • New and Remanufactured Equipment (balers, blowers, separators, filters and more). Our Remanufactured equipment includes a warranty and offers significant savings. • NFPA and OSHA compliant systems designed by our NFPA trained engineering team. • Dust Briquetters, Certified Explosion Isolation Valves, Flame Front Diverters and more to control dust and meet NFPA requirements. • PLC Touch Screen Controls with Real Time Pressure Balancing and Real Time Remote Monitoring available on your smart phone or computer. AICC is bringing together two AICC members, Kim Nelson, Owner of Royal Containers, and members of Bobst North America, to discuss the value of forming a partnership with vendors. Attendees will learn that when you create a partner- ship, you see a shorter amount of time to get up to speed on a machine, and it reduces the number of people need- ed in the pressroom. The vendor becomes a valuable re- source and you develop a strong trust factor that leads to success in all areas of your business. Consistency is built as the relationship grows with both becoming part of a stronger team. This webinar is available for free to AICC members. For more information, contact Chelsea May, Education & Train- ing Manager, at

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August 15, 2022

Ox Industries Adds Facility To Grow In Mid-Atlantic Area

Box Shipments ( U.S. Corrugated Product Shipments) Industry Shipments In Billions of Square Feet Month June 2022

Hanover, Pennsylvania based Ox Industries announced that it has acquired a 150,000-square-foot facility in Ha- nover to expand its converting capacity in the Mid-Atlantic Region. The facility will house next-generation equipment and manufacturing practices and expand Just-in-Time (JIT) stocking products and services. “We are excited to expand our Hanover location and to continue to invest in the community where we originally started Ox,” said CEO Kevin Hayward. “This is part of a $15 million investment in Hanover that will vertically integrate with our 100 percent recycled paperboard mills and create 50 new green-collar jobs.” Ox Industries is one of the the largest independently owned, vertically integrated producer of paperboard, spe- cialty paper, tube & core, and protective packaging prod- ucts. The company operates four recycled paper mills and seven converting plants in nine states. The company was founded in 1996 as Ox Paper Tube & Core with just a handful of employees. The company has grown to over 500 employees with multiple mills and converting facilities across the country. One of those facilities is the Halltown Mill in Halltown, West Virginia. Started in 1869, it was originally a paper mill until it became an operational paper board mill.



Percent Change Avg Week Percent Change

2022 2021

34.771 35.948


7.903 8.170


Industry Total

Year-to Date

June 2022



Percent Change Avg Week Percent Change

2022 2021

205.855 208.569


8.019 8.170


Industry Total

Containerboard Consumption (Thousands of Tons)



Percent Change Year-to-Date Percent Change

2022 2021

2.8451 2.9436


16.8851 17.0466


Container Board Inventory - Corrugator Plants (Thousands of Tons)

Corrugator Plants Only


Percent Change Weeks of Supply

Percent Change

Jun. May

2.4415 2.3469


3.8 3.6


Shipping Days




2022 2021

22 22

127 126

SOURCE: Fibre Box Association





August 15, 2022

AICC Mexico Slates 2022 Annual Meeting, Trade Fair In Guadalajara In November AICC Mexico announced that it will hold its 2022 Annual Meeting & Trade Fair November 15-17, in Guadalajara, Mexico. The three-day program will feature leading industry speakers, a table-top trade fair, a training seminar, and plant tour, as well as social and networking opportunities.

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The host hotel will be the Riu Plaza Guadalajara Hotel, Mexico. A 4.5- star hotel, situated in the heart of Guadalajara, it is within a 10-minute drive of Expo Guadalajara and Avienda Chapultepec. On Tuesday, November 15, AICC Mexico will host a production seminar, “Packaging Design Workflow Process Mapping,” presented by Dr. Andrew Hurley, Professor of Packaging Science, Sonoco Institute at Clemson Uni- versity. That evening, the trade fair and welcome reception which will be sponsored by AICC Mexico’s supplier members, will take place at the Riu Plaza Guadalajara Hotel. On Wednesday, November 16, the meeting will kick-off with a presen- tation by Dr. Mark Wilde, The Bank of Montreal, who will present “The Current State of the North American Containerboard Industry.” Juan Javier Gonzalez, General Director of Cartro, will present “The General Director, that Unknown”. Dr. Rodrigo De León, IPADE, will then present “The New Global Geopo- litical Chess and the Future of Mexico.” The meeting will conclude with a presentation by Simón Cohen, President, HENCO Global and author, who will present “The Secrets of an Entrepreneur - In Search of Success, Found Happiness.” The table-top trade fair will take place on Wednesday afternoon, when attendees will be able to visit over 35 supplier companies to find out “What’s New” in the industry and network with colleagues and friends. On Thursday, November 17, the meeting will come to a close with a tour of local plant member Cartographic. Established in 1996, the company fo- cuses on three specialized divisions, developing all kinds of packaging, displays and cardboard POP materials. Cartographic works with clients requiring the highest standards in quality and service. All presentations will be conducted primarily in Spanish with simulta- neous English translation. For more information about the AICC Mexico Meeting and Trade Fair, visit or contact Maria Frustaci at (703) 629-1134 or by email

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August 15, 2022

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Rice Joins Mill Rock Packaging As Chief Information Officer

expertise in paper packaging system design and integra- tion will be invaluable as we build out our platform sys- tems, data and information environments,” In his new role at Mill Rock Packaging, Rice will be re- sponsible for building a world-class technology platform to enhance Mill Rock Packaging’s use of its enterprise sys- tem, cloud, big data, and other technology applications to foster an environment that will drive customer success.

New York, New York based Mill Rock Packaging Partners, a specialty packaging platform that invests in growth-ori- ented companies with advanced service and product ca- pabilities in the consumer packaging industry, announced that Steve Rice has been named Chief Information Officer, a new position for the company. Mill Rock Packaging is a portfolio company of New York based Mill Rock Capital, a growth and operations-oriented private investment firm. Rice is an accomplished technology and system enter- prise professional with 20 years’ experience, including an extensive background in packaging production, manufac- turing and fulfillment. Prior to joining Mill Rock Packaging, he worked for 15 years with EFI Radius, an industry-leading, purpose-built enterprise resource planning software pro- vider to the packaging industry, where he was a key leader in the company’s product development and delivery team. Previously, he spent five years with Business Intelligence Solutions, managing new software products and directing technical design, sales and delivery planning. “On behalf of the entire Mill Rock Packaging team, we are pleased that Steve is joining as our CIO,” said Allen Ennis, Mill Rock Packaging CEO. Steve has a long history working with several of our team members, and his proven

AICC Releases 2022 Salary, Hourly, Wage & Benefit Report

AICC, The Independent Packaging Association, has re- leased the 2022 Salary, Hourly Wage & Benefits Report for independent corrugated converters. The biennial report is a comprehensive benchmarking report on the wages and benefits offered in independent corrugator and sheet plants across the United States. The report features information on the compensation and benefits of more than 116 job positions in independent corrugator and sheet plants, including production manag- er, customer service representatives, graphic designers, machine operators, and many more. Salaries and hourly wages of employees in U.S. inde- pendent corrugated converting operations rose an aver- age of 7.0 percent from January 1, 2021 to January 1, 2022, CONTINUED ON PAGE 16

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August 15, 2022

Peachtree Packaging & Display Earns SFI Certification


according to the report. The survey was conducted from March through May of this year and is the industry’s most comprehensive report of key employee salaries, wages and benefits paid by independent corrugator plants, inde- pendent sheet feeders, and sheet plants in the U.S. The salary and report data is presented in easy-to-read tables broken down by type of plant, positions title and AICC regions. AICC members who participated in the sur- vey received a complimentary electronic copy of the final report. Download the 2022 Salary, hourly Wage & Bene- fit Report at for $225/members and $425/non-members. The survey is conducted by Association Research, Inc., in Gaithersburg, Maryland, an independent, third-party re- search firm. For more information, contact Maria Frustaci at or (703) 836-2422.

Lawrenceville, Georgia based Peachtree Packaging & Dis- play has earned a new certification highlighting its com- mitment to sustainability. The company completed a rigor- ous review from the Sustainable Forestry Initiative® (SFI), earning a Chain of Custody certification for its corrugated packaging, display and box production. SFI is an independent, non-profit organization whose mission is to advance sustainability through forest-fo- cused collaboration. SFI works with the forest sector, brand owners, conservation groups, resource profession- als, landowners, educators, local communities, Indigenous peoples, governments, and universities to promote sus- tainable forests. Peachtree Packaging began its certifica- tion process in May 2022 and completed it in June.

The SFI Chain-of-Custody Standard is an accounting system that tracks forest fiber from production and manufacturing to the end product. Applicants like Peachtree Pack- aging must demonstrate adherence to SFI standards across multiple departments. They include inventory control, employee training, reporting and invoicing to track raw materials from certified sources. In addition, recycled content must be tracked from production and manufacturing to the end product. “As a manufacturer of corrugated products, Peachtree Packaging & Display has always prioritized sustainable business practices that demonstrate its commitment to environ- mental stewardship, and has found that these efforts translate into financial success,” said Chad Wagner, CEO of Peachtree Packaging. “We are thrilled to add SFI’s Chain of Custody certification to our efforts.” Peachtree Packaging is already part of an elite group of environmentally friendly busi- nesses. According to the Corrugated Packag- ing Alliance, recycled corrugated box fibers are used seven times to make new boxes and other paper products. Peachtree’s products are made from 70 to 100 percent recycled materials and the com- pany recycles 100,000-square-feet of scrap and trimmings daily. The company works with Gwinnett County to ensure its wastewater is safe, taking monthly samples and paying a third-party environmental analytics company for screening. According to SFI, paper and cardboard packaging are the top choice for consumers due to their home compostability (69 percent), environmentally-friendly design (66 percent) and recyclability (51 percent).


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Les Pickering To Share Equipment Effectiveness Techniques At CW2022 Les Pickering, Packaging Expert and President of Quad- rant5 and industry consultant worldwide, will share his work and the results from the 2022 Campaign, Perfor- mance PLUS, from 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. September 20- 21 during Corrugated Week 2022. Pickering will introduce the steps to implement that will double Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE) results and share stories from plants around the world after first intro- ducing OEE to North American Packaging Plants in 1997. The goal of Quadrant5’s Performance PLUS strategy is to increase productivity up to 20 percent. This can apply to flexo folder gluers, rotary die cutters, and specialty folder gluers. As the process is implemented, the OEE will evolve until a high percentage in OEE reduction is reached. Pickering brings over 40 years of experience in inter- national process improvement, manufacturing and op- erations. He is a recognized Toyota Production System specialist who has implemented successful transformation methodologies within the packaging, beverages, large warehousing, plastics and automotive industries. He has been involved and led teams that implemented state of the art, world-class manufacturing facilities and was re- sponsible for several major installations that consistently outperform comparative processes two to five fold.

Recent development in digital print and conversion has brought about several digital installations, together with full development of a first all-digital print and cut facility in Santiago, Chile. Pickering has gathered and shared best practices from three continents: Europe, Australia and The Americas. This presentation requires additional registration and a fee. Visit for more information.

AICC ‘Drops’ New Episode Of ‘Breaking Down Boxes’

AICC announced that a new episode is available in its “Breaking Down Boxes” podcast series that will share the trials and triumphs of some of the most significant players in the independent packaging industry. In the “Enough to Be Dangerous” episode, AICC Board Chair Gene Marino, Executive Vice President of Akers Packaging Service Group, and AICC Associate Board Chair Joe Morelli, Vice President of Sales & Marketing of Huston Patterson Printers & Lewisburg Printing Company, will speak with Bill Larsen, Owner and President of Larsen Packaging Products. “Bill’s journey to success is something I think a lot of our members can relate to,” Morelli said. “It highlights the role relationships have played in his life, with both clients


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and vendors, as well as the grind it takes to start, grow and reinvent a business.” Listeners will hear the challenges and successes Lars- en experiences as he expands a distribution company started by his father, into a corrugated converting compa- ny, at the start of the pandemic. “Another fascinating story from an independent, one that did not follow the traditional path to success in pack- aging. There are sure to be lessons learned,” said Michael D’Angelo, AICC President. Subscribe to Breaking Down Boxes on all major pod- cast platforms or visit . Miller Valentine Construction Breaks Ground On $32M Project Sunshine Dayton, Ohio based Miller Valentine Construction an- nounced that it is breaking ground on Project Sunshine, a $32 million, 640,640-square-foot speculative industrial facility located in Groveport, Ohio. The project is being developed by CA Ventures in part- nership with Stotan Industrial. Based in Chicago, Illinois, CA is a global real estate investment management com- pany. Stotan is a private-equity-based industrial real estate



August 15, 2022

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LPC’s Hale Hawkins Awarded 2022 PIAS Person Of The Year

Miller Valentine (CONT’D FROM PAGE 20)

acquisition and development firm that is headquartered in Rosemont, Illinois. The companies spent nearly a year looking for the right location before deciding on Groveport. The industrial park offers convenient highway access and is central to both Rickenbacker Airport and John Glenn Columbus Interna- tional Airport. The company chose Miller Valentine based on the strength of its portfolio and ability to build certainty for its clients. With the market affecting the construction materi- als supply chain, working as a collaborative and transpar- ent partnership is critical to delivering a successful project. While the project’s anticipated completion date isn’t un- til Fall of 2022, Project Sunshine is already attracting po- tential tenants. The level of interest speaks to the region’s strength as a hub for manufacturing and distribution.

Hale Hawkins, CEO of Lewisburg Printing Company in Lewisburg, Tenn., was named by the Printing Industry As-

sociation of the South (PIAS) as its 2022 Person of the Year. The PIAS Person of the Year is chosen for ser- vice to the printing industry, commu- nity and betterment of the graphic arts industry as a whole. Born in Lewisburg, Hale joined his family’s local printing company in

Hale Hawkins

1991 after graduating from Murray State University with a bachelor’s degree in Print Management. He was promoted to GM in 2000 and was named President/CEO in 2002. Hale has inspired an exceptionally successful business

strategy and culture at the company. He has ensured continued success through his ongo- ing investment in cutting-edge technology, hir- ing the right people and listening to the voice of the customer, as well as his commitment to LPC’s values: integrity, respect, trust, passion, credibility and continuous improvement. In addition to his leadership role at LPC, Hale served on the PIAS Board of Directors in 2006 and on its Executive Committee in 2011, culminating as the Chairman of the Board from 2014 to 2015. He currently serves his communi- ty as a Printers Disability Trustee and serves on the boards of First Commerce Bank, the Mar- shall County Economic Development Board, and past Board Member and Chairman of the Chamber of Commerce. In April 2021, LPC and its affliate companies announced a partnership with Radial Equity Partners, a private equity firm with a longstand- ing focus on the print and packaging industry. “Radial has been a terrific partner. They share our goals of being the best supplier to our cus- tomers, the best employer for our employees, and a responsible member of our community,” Hale said. “Our partnership with Hale and the LPC team has been outstanding. We look for- ward to continuing to support the company’s growth organically and through acquisitions,” said Keith Zadourian, Partner at Radial. In March 2022 LPC merged with Huston Patterson and Sigma Graphics, leading sup- pliers of high-graphic printed materials based in Illinois. “Our merger with Huston Patterson and Sigma has brought complementary talent, manufacturing capabilities and geographic reach enhancing our ability to deliver excep- tional speed to market and customer service,” Hale said.


August 15, 2022

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Volk Packaging (CONT’D FROM PAGE 1)

Volk says he was fortunate to find a warehouse that was owned by a hospital, which did not want to sell or lease its property to a cannabis company. The 96,000-square- foot warehouse space was more than the Volks wanted

where customers’ valuable products could be locked up and stored, which limited the services and warehousing VPC could provide. After the test-kit opportunity came along and VPC employees successfully handled the task – they have since shipped almost 100 million units for the customer – Volk thought VPC should go after more of this Derek’s wife, Amy Volk, VPC’s Director of Communi- cation and Public Relations, ran the contract packaging business for four months. One project led to another, one customer followed the next and in 2021, the Volks officially formed Paxit and leased a warehouse in Sanford, Maine, 20 miles and a half-hour west of Biddeford. “We are having amazing success in reducing the stress our customers experience around things like labor, space constraints and warehousing costs, but finding a ware- house in which to operate Paxit was a challenge,” says Derek Volk, referring to the fact that in Maine, cannabis production is booming, and cannabis companies are buy- ing up or leasing every available warehouse space in the state. There’s little available for anything else. Because of space issues, Paxit’s customers have been asking VPC to both handle fulfilment and store their product because they just don’t have the room in their own facilities. And they’re more than happy to pay for the service. type of business. A New Location

or needed – they were initially looking for 50,000-square- feet – but they couldn’t pass up the opportunity. Originally designed to be divided into seven smaller units, the ware- house has four loading docks and ample room for ware- housing and future growth. Paxit employee Logan Rogers packages a customer’s order.



August 15, 2022



GEO. M. Martin Company • 1250 67th Street Emeryville, California 94608, United States 510.652.2200 • Fax 510.652.6447 • email

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Volk Packaging (CONT’D FROM PAGE 24)

The Volks signed a 7-year lease on the entire facility with the intention of using a majority of the space for VPC’s finished goods (70 percent) and the remaining area for Paxit, which has already grown to occupy the remaining 30 percent. The warehouse has been renovated and can safely secure, store, process, and ship valuable customer inventory. Volk says Paxit has also invested in technolo- gies to seamlessly integrate with e-commerce platforms and the company has a staff of close to 20 full-time work- ers, with the ability to bring on more when needed. Finding labor was not the issue it has become in so many other parts of the country. Paxit’s facility in Sanford is far enough from Portland so it doesn’t compete for its labor. And because Sanford is an industrial town that had been in an economic downturn for the last decade or so, it has a workforce willing and able to do the work needed to make Paxit successful. “We haven’t had too hard of a time hiring people,” says Volk. “We started by hiring people in the local community and using some temporary workers, many of whom be- came permanent employees once we had more projects for them. Now we’re taking the Volk Packaging culture and putting it to work at Paxit so that people want to stay.” According to its website at , the com- pany has the ability to integrate into most platforms with

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August 15, 2022

SETTING STANDARDS in Corrugated Solutions


INSPIRE AUTOMATION IS A TURNKEY SOLUTION PROVIDER FOR YOUR MATERIAL HANDLING AND CONVERTING NEEDS. We are proud to offer the products, services and partnerships needed to grow our customers’ business. Inspire Automation specializes in providing the highest quality material handling, litho labeling, load handling, converting and aftermarket products to corrugated converters.


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Volk Packaging (CONT’D FROM PAGE 26)

an extensive array of service offerings that include pick- ing, packing & shipping, kitting & labeling, warehousing & storage, inventory management, e-commerce integration, custom packaging & printing, and sustainable packaging options. Paxit is also able to offer discounted shipping rates. These offerings are proving attractive to customers faced with projects who are at a loss to complete them with limited in-house resources. “Paxit is offering services and labor that many compa- nies can’t handle on their own and from what we’ve seen thus far, we’ve been a tremendous help to many of our customers,” says Volk. “The investment in Paxit has also been a great asset to VPC.”

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As of early July, Paxit had more than 30 jobs it is cur- rently working on or quoting. About 25 percent of Paxit’s customers are existing VPC customers and the remaining 75 percent are new customers, which bodes extremely well for the viability of Paxit as a standalone entity. Customer Satisfaction Volk transferred one of his sales reps from VPC to fo- cus solely on Paxit and the results have been promising. The rep visited a potential customer and saw that their employees were doing some manual work and asked if they needed help in doing the job. The response was an immediate “yes.” The customer was shutting a line down and was being forced to use employees to do the manual labor rather than making more of their products. Adding to the problem was the fact that existing work wasn’t getting done, so the company was losing ground on two fronts Jennifer Hatch, a Paxit production worker, fulfills a order at the company’s 96,000-square-foot facility in Sanford, Maine.

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August 15, 2022

It’s time to revolutionize The new CorruCUT rotary die-cutter pushes what is possible

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Volk Packaging (CONT’D FROM PAGE 28)


“We said we could handle that work for them and they were delighted,” says Volk. “But contract packaging is a different kind of sale than corrugated boxes. It requires a little more explanation and finding the right decision-mak- er – a plant manager, an HR person or the company’s pres- ident – to explain what we do and how we can help.” In many cases, customers who send their products to Paxit also need them boxed, so VPC has seen an increase in new box business. For several other customers, VPC is already making the box and the customer needs some- thing put in it or on it and then shipped, which has saved those customers time, money, and energy. “One customer with a seasonal job needed three la- bels put on a box and they didn’t have the in-house la- bor to do it. We did,” says Volk. “We have the capable and skilled employees who understand that what they’re doing matters and that quality matters. The customer was very happy with the results and plans to use us again next year.” Value Of AICC’s CEO Group Volk says machinery investments in Paxit have been minimal. A couple of strappers, a shrink-wrap tunnel, and a bag sealing machine was all it need- ed to begin operations. Volk is quick to share advice he heard in his AICC CEO Group, which is led by Mitch Klingher: “Let the customer drive the equipment purchase. Don’t go out and buy a bunch of equipment that you may or may not need. Find out what your customers need and decide if it’s worth buying a machine to do the job.” Volk praises members of his AICC CEO Group for help- ing Paxit’s sales rep to refine the company’s approach to potential customers. “When potential customers hear the word ‘packaging’ they think only boxes. ‘Contract packag- ing,’ however, is quite different and thus, requires a differ- ent sales approach, one that has made a noticeable im- pact on the bottom line.” Volk says one of the CEO group’s members (who has since sold his company but is still involved in the industry) went so far as to travel up to Maine for a week to look at Paxit’s operation and recommend the software it would need. The Volk team was looking at very expensive soft- ware, but he explained that Paxit did not need a bunch of expensive software programs. Every operation that need- ed to be performed was able to be managed at that time with QuickBooks and Excel. “The advice I’ve gotten from my AICC CEO group has been priceless,” says Volk. “Joining that group has been one of the best decisions I’ve made in my entire career.” He admits that he, Amy and the Paxit employees are still “kind of new at this and learning the business as we go,” while working on getting the word out with emails, videos, and Social Media. “There is so much business here that is, figuratively and literally, outside the box.” Mitch Klingher


Advantzware provides a flexible and comprehensive system to address the business management needs of the independent box business, as well as the ERP re- quirements of full scale packaging plants and integrat- ed companies. With modules for estimating, scheduling, production, inventory and accounting, this scalable sys- tem supports packaging plants that produce corrugat- ed boxes, folding cartons, point of purchase displays, assembled partitions, paperboard products, foam fab- rication, as well as distribution of packaging supplies. AIR CONVEYING CORPORATION Air Conveying Corporation is a recognized leader in the in- dustry of Pneumatic Conveying Systems and has been in business since 1968. As an equipment manufacturer rather than simply a sales organization, we have complete control over the quality of material and products which make up your proposed system. Our equipment is found in Printing, Folding Carton and Corrugated plants throughout the coun- try and the world. Let us build you the best Trim Removal System you ever had. Contact us today. Amtech offers the industry’s most innovative and compre- hensive corrugated and packaging ERP, integrated sched- uling software, and engineered automation technology. For over 30 years, Amtech has remained at the backbone of successful businesses from the independent box makers to the largest integrateds. We keep our customers competitive in an ever-changing economy with options such as custom- er digital storefronts and workflows, business intelligence, automated scheduling for corrugators, converting and shipping, proactive roll stock and inventory management. APEX INTERNATIONAL AMTECH SOFTWARE World’s largest Anilox and Glue & Metering roll manufac- turer, providing the widest selection of corrugated engrav- ings and complementary services. Anilox engraving options available from our North American manufacturing facility include elongated 75°, 60°, 45°, plus Apex’s patented GTT technology. Glue rolls are produced with Hardened Stain- less Steel and a max TIR of 10 µ for Single, Double Facers.


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