NJM Builds New Plant as CLI Is Founded in Canada
While Beatlemania swept the U.S., a quieter revolution in pharmaceutical packaging was beginning to the north, and NJM Packaging was expanding its operations at home. From 1965 to 1978, NJM Packaging was laying the groundwork for international expansion and refining labeling technology that would efficiently and cost-effectively prevent labeling mistakes.
NJM Packaging started off this chapter in its history in 1965 by building its new plant in Lebanon, NH. This plant was not only larger and better able to manufacture new products but was also capable of using welding and sheet metal fabrication technologies to manufacture its pharmaceutical packaging machines.
This year also brought Linc Jepson into the fold. Linc Jepson would be the Eastern Field Manager and go on to become NJM Packaging’s President from 1987 to 2004.
To the north, Charles Lapierre started Auto-Pac Canada, later known as Charles Lapierre Inc. (CLI), in Montreal, Canada. Lapierre was president of CLI from 1965 to 1991. CLI would later merge with NJM Packaging to become the premiere packaging solution provider for North America.
Past Presidents of NJM Packaging
NJM Packaging also moved full speed ahead with expanding its packaging machinery line. With the purchase of the Packer Machine company, NJM Packaging had now acquired the Paka line of liquid fillers. In 1966 and 1968, NJM Packaging’s acquisitions extended to the Apache Capping Machine line from Dietz Machine Works and vertical-form-fill-seal machines by acquiring Hercules Products, respectively. In 1973, NJM Packaging introduced its very popular Mustang® cold glue labeler, a workhorse of a machine that was the forerunner of many of its successful automatic labelers.
Meanwhile, in 1976, the pressure-sensitive labeling market was growing, and NJM Packaging rose to the occasion with the introduction of the original standalone dispenser, the Model 304 Premium Pressure Sensitive Labeling System. Pressure-sensitive labelers were cleaner and more versatile. The Model 304 could label a single side or front and back simultaneously; label flat objects with high speed and accuracy; and place wrap-around labels on vials or ampules at speeds up to 300 bpm.
NJM Packaging continued to manufacture the 304 as a standalone but purchased a conveyor system to make the pharmaceutical packaging fully automatic, naming the new labeler the Model 311 Pacesetter. This fully automatic labeler made it easier to dispense pressure-sensitive labels with no glue and fewer mechanical parts. The Model 331 Pacestepper was introduced next with a “stepper-driven dispenser” for pharmaceutical packaging and the eventual retirement of the 311 – for which NJM Packaging still sells parts.
Model 311 Pacesetter Labeler
Joe Danyow was Parts Manager for the Lebanon, NH plant in the 1980s. Over his 30 year tenure at the company, currently as the Application Specialist – Labelers, he says, “…the need for ‘replacement parts’ was greatly reduced as new technology was developed. The older technology in equipment required a machine that used more ‘moving parts’. As the stepper and servo motors were engineered into packaging equipment, the machines did not require as many mechanical replacement parts. So less moving parts meant less parts to replace and not as many parts to wear out reducing costs to maintain machines.”
Next month, we dive into cold glue labeling for food and wine, building expansions, and even more new technology. Until then read more about our 100-year history.