NZME’s Ellerslie print centre has once again become the only New Zealand newspaper printer to be inducted into the International Color Quality Club.
Run by the World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers, the Quality Club is the world’s only printing quality competition for newspapers and has been run every two years since 1994.
Printers who clear WAN-IFRA’s “demanding and intensive” competition process gain club membership for two years.
NZME Ellerslie secured membership for the 2016-2018 club for its production of the 32-page, four-section and 10,000-copy broadsheet Chinese Herald, which is printed four times per week on a 20-year-old Goss HT70 press.
It was ranked 30 out of 150 global entrants.
Prior to that, the centre had three consecutive, unsuccessful attempts to gain entry into the club before first obtaining membership in 2014.
NZME Ellerslie operations manager Russell Wieck said the centre’s 10-year journey to get into the Quality Club helped significantly lift quality standards.
“The journey that has unfolded over the past decade has enabled our team to learn so much more about printing. We are now striving for a standard of excellence that was well beyond what we thought possible,” Mr Wieck said.
“That confirms, even though our press is 20 years old, it is still able to produce world-class quality. And that comes down to the people who are using it – it is really about harnessing the passion, training and skills of the staff.
“What we have learned along the way, we would never have learned by any other means – there would have been no other reason to put ourselves under that amount of scrutiny.”
To gain membership, entrants have to print a product on a set date across three months with each copy including the IFRA ‘Cuboid’, which records data relevant to the technical element of the submission.
Successful entrants must surpass a base score on each monthly assessment of the Cuboid production.
Two random copies are then selected by judges and the first 16 pages of each is scrutinised further for print quality.
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