Southern Champion Tray expands

On Aug. 10, Southern Champion Tray (SCT), a third generation, family-owned paperboard manufacturer, celebrated the completion of a multi-year, multi-million dollar expansion and renovation at its Mansfield, Texas, facility. A large contingent of customers, suppliers, and community leaders attended an open house that featured presentations from SCT executives, a ribbon cutting ceremony, tours of the facility, a digital solutions symposium and a catered lunch. The Mansfield expansion included the addition of state-of-the-art converting equipment, the installation of LED/UV offset print technology, and showcased the new HP Indigo 30000 digital press, one of only 50 installations worldwide.

SCT is headquartered in Chattanooga, Tennessee, and has been in operation since 1927. The Mansfield plant opened in 1983. The current 135,000-sq-ft facility produces custom paperboard packaging for the food, nutraceutical, pet, office products, pharma, and other industries. The Chattanooga facility specializes in stock foodservice packaging, while the Mansfield facility works with end-users to develop custom packaging for consumer products. The expansion adds 25,000 sq ft of manufacturing space, a complete makeover of the office space, and includes SCT Creative, a creative design space for customer collaboration that will focus on the consumer experience.

In March, SCT celebrated its 90th anniversary, so the theme of the Mansfield event was “Beyond 90; The Future is Now.” John Zeiser, CEO, thanked customers and suppliers, some of whom have relationships with SCT that stretch back for decades. He also expressed appreciation to the Mansfield community and city government for their support over the years. Special note was made of the SCT staff who he said have done a great job serving customers during the yearlong renovation project.

The expansion and new equipment provides SCT with the capabilities to help customers solve promotional and supply chain challenges and cost-effectively produce short runs to eliminate product obsolescence and reduce cycle time to market; personalize product for local, regional or individual consumer experience; and produce real time mock-ups or prototypes, said John Simpson, General Manager of the facility. “The marketplace is changing at an accelerating pace. Consumers respond to new experiences. The addition of the HP Indigo 30000 digital press is technology that empowers our customers to uniquely position their product for the optimal consumer experience,” Simpson said.

SCT’s Mansfield plant manufactures packaging for retailers such as Target, Home Depot, Walmart, Costco and local grocers. The company employs more than 100 and plans to add a third shift over the next year, creating a number of new positions.

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