Monthly Archives: December 2011

  • Nestle Washes Away Old Water Packaging with New Design

    Nestle has rolled out a new packaging design for its European water brand, featuring a new tamper-evident sports cap, PackagingDigest reports.

    The new bottle has a cap that can be flipped closed rather than having a traditional screw top. Nestle is highlighting the feature both on product labels and on brand support websites. The new cap has a patented tamper-evident band, which is completely inaccessible, even with an external tool.

    "When the flip-top is pushed open for the first time the band's bridges break automatically, the lower section then drops to the base of the spout and is retained there as permanent evidence of opening," the news source reports.

    Once opened, the cap has a hinge that holds the top at a 180-degree angle. When consumers are done drinking, they can close the cap, which locks with a click.

    Businesses should always be thinking of the safety of their consumers. This includes disclosing expiration dates on product labels, integrating tamper-proof security features and other strategies to ensure the quality of the product.

  • Plastics To Become More Malleable in 2012

    The end of one year and the beginning of another often marks a period of reflection for businesses and industries, and the packaging sector is no different.

    In a recent article for the website Plastics Today, Tony Deligio makes some predictions for what 2012 has in store for plastics packaging. One of the most salient factors is the environment, he writes.

    While lightweight primary packaging is reaching its tipping point — any less plastic in a water bottle and it may collapse — biobased polyehthylene terephthalate is taking center stage thanks to companies such as Coca-Cola and Pepsi that are striving to do away with petroleum-based packaging.

    However, plastic bags are experiencing increasing resistance from interest groups and state governments. "In cash-strapped governments around the globe, where economic uncertainty and hyper-partisanship have paralyzed nearly all other legislating, bag bans or bag taxes seem to be the one piece of legislation that city councils, state houses and national governments the world over can pass," Deligio writes.

    This month, Seattle added its name to that roster, with its city council passing a ban on plastic bags in grocery stores, department stores, clothing stores and convenience stores, among others, The Seattle Post-Intelligencer reports. 

  • Some Beer Hoppier Than the Rest

    In an ongoing effort to aid individuals with Celiac disease, food and drink manufacturers, as well as legislatures, have moved to make gluten labeling clearer.

    In a recent study featured in the Journal of Proteome Research, titled "What is in a Beer?," Michelle Colgrove and colleagues from the University of Queensland in Australia found that of eight beers labeled "gluten-free," all were labeled correctly. Yet two that were designated as "low gluten" actually contained as much as regular beer, the website EmaxHealth writes.

    The researchers tested 60 beers using a test they developed themselves, which looks for the substance hordein, according to the source. The chemical is present in barley-based beers, which contain gluten, although it could reduced by brewers during the manufacturing process.

    "While European countries, Australia and New Zealand have standards in place for gluten food labeling, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration is still in the process of setting standards for American products," the website writes. "The American Celiac Disease Alliance states that foods below the 20 ppm standard in other countries should be safe for the majority of individuals with Celiac disease."

    Additional labeling concerns are plaguing the beer industry, as the U.S. has introduced new caloric labeling requirements. According to Bloomberg Businessweek, industry group The Beer Institute spent $260,000 lobbying the federal government in the third quarter of 2011.

  • Illuminating New Light Bulb Label Policy to go Into Effect

    A new light bulb labeling policy enacted by Congress is slated to go into effect on Sunday, the Detroit Free Press reports.

    The new policy requires all light bulbs to be 25 percent more efficient, essentially banning the sale of the traditional Edison incandescent bulb except for those used in specific appliances. Additionally, light bulb labels must advise consumers of the enhanced product, informing buyers of their brightness, annual operating costs and expected life span.

    "The labels apply to all light bulbs made or imported after Sunday, but the efficiency standards apply only to traditional 100-watt incandescents on that day," the news source explains. "The efficiency rules will begin applying to the old-fashioned 75-watt bulb in January 2013 and 40- and 60-watt bulbs in January 2014."

    Retailers can continue to sell older light bulbs provided they were purchased before the new policy deadline. These older bulbs are less efficient because most of their energy produces heat, rather than light.

  • Coca-Cola Researches New Packaging Made from Plants

    Soft drink manufacturer Coca-Cola is hoping to limit its environmental footprint by researching new methods for packaging its products.

    The company has partnered with several biotechnology companies to replace its traditional plastic bottles with a 100 percent plant-based container. In 2009, the company developed a bottle that was made of 30 percent plant, which it hopes to improve upon in the near future.

    As Package Design Magazine notes, the use of the existing plant-based bottle has already helped save the equivalent of 100,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide.

    "This is a significant R&D investment in packaging innovation and is the next step toward our vision of creating all of our plastic packaging from responsibly sourced plant-based materials," Rick Frazier, vice president of commercial product supply for Coca-Cola, told the news source.

    Coca-Cola promotes its environmental efforts on its product labels. Savvy consumers looking to buy eco-friendly products may take note of this designation when deciding which goods they want to buy.

  • Sickly Scents: Study Suggests Fragrant Cleaners Need Labels

    Manufacturers of scented products don't need to disclose fragrances used on product labels, which may be literally causing headaches for some shoppers.

    After receiving numerous phone calls from people saying they were getting sick from common fragranced household products, Dr. Anne Steinemann of the University of Washington recently analyzed 25 popular "scented" products.

    "All of them," Steinemann told CBS News, "emitted chemicals that are classified as toxic or hazardous under federal laws. These chemicals are ones that can damage the brain, the lungs, the central nervous system and cause cancer."

    The same problem was observed in both typical products and ones that were deemed green or natural. In both instances, chemicals emitted by these products could be considered dangerous to the user. Based on the data, Steinemann asserts that manufacturers of these products should be compelled to list them on labels.

    Some cleaner manufacturers are transparent about their fragrances. For example, Clorox discloses information on its website about the 1,200 ingredients used to create fragrances for its products.

  • States Lend Support to FDA Cigarette Labeling Initiative

    A coalition of 22 states have lent their support to the Food & Drug Administration's graphic cigarette labeling policy, which was delayed in November.

    Federal courts delayed the implementation of the proposed regulation, which would have forced cigarette makers to display gruesome graphics on cartons that detailed the negative health effects of smoking. Now, 22 states have filed a friend-of-the-court brief in support of the regulation, the Winston-Salem Journal reports.

    R.J. Reynolds Tobacco and Lorillard were two tobacco manufacturers that filed suit against the FDA in August, arguing the labels infringed on their right to free speech. While the proposed regulation wasn't shut down, a federal judge suggested the policy not go into play until 15 months after the litigation is settled.

    "The FDA has said the public interest in conveying the dangers of smoking outweighs the companies' free-speech rights," the news source notes.

    If the labels are passed, they will occupy up to 50 percent of cigarette cartons — a significant amount of space.

  • Nutty Labels at the Root of Peanut Recall

    The U.S. Food & Drug Administration has reported a voluntary recall of two companies' snack foods, which contain peanuts but aren't labeled as such.

    Eillien's Candies recalled yogurt raisins, granola mix and cinnamon granola mix, while Maribel's Sweets recalled its New York Handbag Collection chocolates. Both companies' products may contain peanuts without the labels disclosing this information. Because peanut allergies can lead to potentially deadly reactions, the brands are voluntarily taking their products back.

    "Consumers with recalled product should return it to the place of purchase for a full refund," Eillien's Candies told the Epoch Times. So far, there have been no reported reactions with the mislabeled products, which have a sell-by date of December 22.

    It's crucial that product manufacturers ensure labels are accurate. Producing packaging can be a costly procedure — even more so when companies need to recall their goods and create new labels. The best way to minimize mistakes is by keeping design processes internal until labels need to be mass-produced.

  • Are Labels Invisible to Children?

    A new study focusing on the relationship between 4- to 5-year-old children and labels suggests marketers may want to re-examine how they appeal to this demographic.

    The study, which was conducted by Ohio State University, found that young children do not process and perceive labeling systems as adults do. Labels, the research noted, are often just one more feature of a product instead of part of a system of classification.

    In the experiment, participants were asked to determine the name of a fictional animal that was mislabeled as another animal. Whereas ninety percent of children named the animal dependent on the characteristics of its head, only 18 percent of adults did, with nearly two-thirds depending on the label.

    "In the past, we thought that if we name the things for children, the labels will do the rest: children would infer that the two things that have the same name are alike in some way or that they go together," Vladimir Sloutsky, co-author of the study and a professor of psychology at OSU, said.

    For marketers and businesses looking to relate to children or warn them away from things like medications and cleaners, the takeaway may be that they need to find another way to communicate through labels.

  • How Manufacturers Can Hit a Hole in One by Studying Golf Brands

    Golf equipment is somewhat challenging to market. It's difficult to differentiate brands from each other, as they appear to be offering the same products. Still, some manufactures have extremely loyal fan bases. The reason? They design labels and packages for specific customer groups. As Packaging Design Magazine notes, golf brands make extensive use of ethnographic research to determine how different consumers interact with various types of products and packages. They study how specific customers react to packaging labels and then design packaging labels based on customer feedback. Continue reading

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Material Descriptions

Materials

BIOSTONE

One of our eco-friendly options that is actually made of stone—no trees are used. This material should not laminated.

CAST GLOSS

This is another material specially designed for the wine industry. It is paper-based with a high-gloss white finish. Same adhesive and liner as Estate #9.

CHROME (SILVER) BOPP

This material has the same water and oil-resistant properties as our White BOPP and Clear BOPP, but has the "mirror-like" look of shiny chrome.

CLASSIC CREST

Best suited for wine labels, this is a white paper stock with a dull matte finish. It is not suitable for lamination and is therefore not waterproof. Same adhesive and liner as Estate #9.

CLEAR BOPP

This is the clear version of the Polypropylene (BOPP) material. It has the same waterproof qualities as the White BOPP. It provides more of a "no label" look and is also suitable for window stickers (where reverse printing of the image allows the label to be applied to the inside of a glass window and be viewed from the outside).

ESTATE #9

This is a great option for wine labels, gourmet foods or applications where a textured finish is desired. Being a paper stock, it's not as water-resistant or durable as BOPP, but its light cream color and textured feel add a touch of the "unusual" to the right product. It features a special adhesive (removable in 100+ degree hot water) and a stronger liner particularly suited to machine application. Not suitable for lamination.

GOLD POLYESTER (METALIZED)

This material will make your labels shine! Suitable for most labeling applications, it has a strong adhesive backing and must be laminated. Choose glossy laminate to make your label designs pop, or matte for a unique, elegant look.

KRAFT (RECYCLED)

This is a recycled 100% post consumer waste material. It is a 55# paper material that is a wonderful option if an “earthy” appearance is desired. The stronger liner is well suited for machine application. Depending upon face, substrate, water temperature and dwell time, label may be removed in hot water. It is not suitable for lamination; therefore, it is not water or oil resistant.

REMOVABLE WHITE BOPP

This material is the same as our standard BOPP, but has a special, "less aggressive" adhesive designed to allow the label to be removed or re-positioned after application. Depending on the surface it will be applied to, customer testing is strongly recommended. We can provide samples for this purpose.

SATIN CLOTH

Quite the unique material! Yes, it is woven satin acetate cloth. Think wine or spirit labels! This material will make your product packaging POP. The stronger liner is well suited for machine application. Depending upon face, substrate, water temperature and dwell time, label may be removed in hot water.

SQUEEZABLE

A white, 3mil film that is better suited for squeezable applications. This material has proven to work well in a variety of applications, so you can be confident it will perform well for you.

VELLUM (RECYCLED)

A great “green” choice, this 60# vellum is 100% recycled with 100% post consumer waste material. Cannot be laminated. Is neither water nor oil-resistant. The stronger liner is well suited for machine application. Depending upon face, substrate, water temperature and dwell time, label may be removed in hot water.

WHITE BOPP

This is our most commonly used material and is suitable for most applications. It's a polypropylene material with a permanent adhesive. It is impervious to water and oils, and is particularly suitable for bath and body products, as well as food containers.

WHITE EARTHFIRST PLA

A more environmentally friendly alternative to White BOPP. The PLA stands for Polylactic Acid (a biopolymer made from corn rather than petrochemicals). Similar look and feel to BOPP and suitable for most applications, but should not be used directly on candle containers.

WHITE FLEXIBLE VINYL

This is our most substantial material. The vinyl is thicker than BOPP, and is most suitable for outdoor applications where greater strength and durability are needed, or where lengthy exposure to the elements is an issue.

WINDOW DECAL (CLEAR/ULTRA-REMOVABLE)

We offer this window decal option as an alternative to static cling. The face stock is clear with excellent clarity. The adhesive is an ultra-removable featuring excellent weatherability and UV resistance. It removes cleanly from a wide variety of substrates without staining or ghosting. Why worry about static clings staying on when you can have removable adhesive there to hold it in place?

CAST GLOSS

This is another material specially designed for the wine industry. It is paper-based with a high-gloss white finish. Same adhesive and liner as Estate #9.

CHROME (SILVER) BOPP

This material has the same water and oil-resistant properties as our White BOPP and Clear BOPP, but has the "mirror-like" look of shiny chrome.

CLASSIC CREST

Best suited for wine labels, this is a white paper stock with a dull matte finish. It is not suitable for lamination and is therefore not waterproof. Same adhesive and liner as Estate #9.

CLEAR BOPP

This is the clear version of the Polypropylene (BOPP) material. It has the same waterproof qualities as the White BOPP. It provides more of a "no label" look and is also suitable for window stickers (where reverse printing of the image allows the label to be applied to the inside of a glass window and be viewed from the outside).

ESTATE #9

This is a great option for wine labels, gourmet foods or applications where a textured finish is desired. Being a paper stock, it's not as water-resistant or durable as BOPP, but its light cream color and textured feel add a touch of the "unusual" to the right product. It features a special adhesive (removable in 100+ degree hot water) and a stronger liner particularly suited to machine application. Not suitable for lamination.

GOLD POLYESTER (METALIZED)

This material will make your labels shine! Suitable for most labeling applications, it has a strong adhesive backing and must be laminated. Choose glossy laminate to make your label designs pop, or matte for a unique, elegant look.

KRAFT (RECYCLED)

This is a recycled 100% post consumer waste material. It is a 55# paper material that is a wonderful option if an “earthy” appearance is desired. The stronger liner is well suited for machine application. Depending upon face, substrate, water temperature and dwell time, label may be removed in hot water. It is not suitable for lamination; therefore, it is not water or oil resistant.

REMOVABLE WHITE BOPP

This material is the same as our standard BOPP, but has a special, "less aggressive" adhesive designed to allow the label to be removed or re-positioned after application. Depending on the surface it will be applied to, customer testing is strongly recommended. We can provide samples for this purpose.

SATIN CLOTH

Quite the unique material! Yes, it is woven satin acetate cloth. Think wine or spirit labels! This material will make your product packaging POP. The stronger liner is well suited for machine application. Depending upon face, substrate, water temperature and dwell time, label may be removed in hot water.

SQUEEZABLE

A white, 3mil film that is better suited for squeezable applications. This material has proven to work well in a variety of applications, so you can be confident it will perform well for you.

VELLUM (RECYCLED)

A great “green” choice, this 60# vellum is 100% recycled with 100% post consumer waste material. Cannot be laminated. Is neither water nor oil-resistant. The stronger liner is well suited for machine application. Depending upon face, substrate, water temperature and dwell time, label may be removed in hot water.

WHITE BOPP

This is our most commonly used material and is suitable for most applications. It's a polypropylene material with a permanent adhesive. It is impervious to water and oils, and is particularly suitable for bath and body products, as well as food containers.

WHITE EARTHFIRST PLA

A more environmentally friendly alternative to White BOPP. The PLA stands for Polylactic Acid (a biopolymer made from corn rather than petrochemicals). Similar look and feel to BOPP and suitable for most applications, but should not be used directly on candle containers.

WHITE FLEXIBLE VINYL

This is our most substantial material. The vinyl is thicker than BOPP, and is most suitable for outdoor applications where greater strength and durability are needed, or where lengthy exposure to the elements is an issue.

WINDOW DECAL (CLEAR/ULTRA-REMOVABLE)

We offer this window decal option as an alternative to static cling. The face stock is clear with excellent clarity. The adhesive is an ultra-removable featuring excellent weatherability and UV resistance. It removes cleanly from a wide variety of substrates without staining or ghosting. Why worry about static clings staying on when you can have removable adhesive there to hold it in place?

Artwork Specifications

Laminates

High Gloss

High gloss is our most popular laminate. It is the least expensive option and provides protection for the label and a high gloss shiny finish.

Matte

The Matte Laminate provides your label with a dull, non-glossy finish. Some customers consider this achieves a more "natural" look.

Thermal Transfer

This is a gloss laminate that is designed to work with most over-printing thermal transfer printers. We do recommend you get samples first to test through your own printer before placing an order with this laminate.

UV Outdoor Gloss

As the name implies this is best used for labels that will be used outdoors. It has a high gloss finish with excellent UV resistance. It is best paired with our vinyl material for the most durable outdoor label.