Trimatt explains why it won the MICE Product Innovation Award


Trimatt discusses its victory in the MICE Product Innovation Awards, and how its ColourStar machines can help roasters make a name for themselves.

After taking home the 2023 Product Innovation Award for Coffee Accessories at the Melbourne International Coffee Expo (MICE), Trimatt Founder Matt Johnson described the feeling of winning as “sensational” as he walked off stage, but those familiar with the packaging machine manufacturer know that it’s a well- deserved win.

“For us, it’s a recognition of the effort we make,” says Matt. “Any award would have been satisfying, but having the judges recognising a technology that’s totally unique was quite a thrill.”

Trimatt’s Product Innovation Award win has been 18 years in the making. Founder Matt Johnson started Trimatt in 2005 when he set out a mission to help the packaging industry by incorporating automation into its operations through designing and fabricating fully automated product handling systems.

“I’ve always been involved in technology that helps businesses through automation,” says Matt.

“Automation for us is about helping businesses remain competitive, and to manufacture products that have a small footprint.”

Matt says sustainability is equally as important to Trimatt when designing an automation solution.

“When we were listening to our customers [about their packaging needed], they were all very mindful of footprint,” he says.

“We took that [into consideration], and we created a machine that’s versatile but also has a small footprint.”

Trimatt developed the ColourStar AQ V, an all-in-one digital colour printer for sustainable paper and cardboard packaging.

The machine features an automated feeder, adjustable receiving tray, and a conveyor that takes the automation out of the packaging process and allows for an adaptable user experience.

“What makes it so versatile is its simple ability to change to different formats,” Matt says. “We’ve taken the machine and given it the ability to print the format of something as small as a business card to a large box that’s over 90 centimetres by 150 centimetres in size.

“That kind of changeover can occur in as little as five minutes.”

Simplicity of operation is also reflected in Trimatt’s ColourStar AQ V system, given one person is required to “drive” the machine.

“It does take operator training, and that’s also what we’re good at. Once a customer invests in a machine, we take the time to educate them on the technology, so they know how to use it and how to get the most out of the equipment,” Matt says.

Customer feedback fuelled the design process for the ColourStar AQ V, which Matt says was incredibly important to Trimatt.

“We consulted with the users of the machine, who were looking to use it with a broad range of products,” he says. “We worked with them to determine what the run lengths would be, what changeovers would look like, and the level of skill the user would need.

“We still get suggestions from clients, and generally we will build their suggestions into our future models.”

One such suggestion was for a machine that incorporated the same technology of the AQ V, but for simpler, reduced operations.

As such, the ColourStar AQ LT is a smaller version of its predecessor, but retains the same quality of printing.

“We’re finding through consultation with roasters, the LT is a perfect fit because of its limited range, and by that we’ve been able to give businesses a choice,” says Matt. “Roasters are investing in the machine so they can print bags and boxes on a daily basis.”

Matt adds that the ColourStar AQ LT machine can print wholesale and retail coffee bags in 250-gram, 500-gram, or one- kilogram sizes, as well as customise printing options for personalised branding.

Since receiving the 2023 MICE Product Innovation Award in August for the AQ V, Matt says the company has been flooded with congratulatory messages from customers.

“[Customers] are so surprised there’s an Australian company based in Melbourne making world-class products,” he says. “When I look around at exhibitions, I don’t normally see Australian-made products.”

To build on the success Trimatt has created, the company is looking to push innovation and find new printing and packaging solutions.

“We see other sectors in the market we can develop,” says Matt. “We have some exciting new products coming up, so we’ll be showing something new at MICE next year.

“We’re always working on something new, so it’s hard to predict what will come out next.”

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This article appears in the October 2023 edition of BeanScene. Subscribe HERE.

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