Monthly Archives: October 2012

  • Custom Sticker Used To Gauge Concussion-Like Symptoms

    Reebok Launches Sensor Sticker Label For Athletes

    Sticker labels are an unlikely hero in the world of sports injuries. But as concussions and head injuries continue to mar some of the America's most popular - and, unfortunately, most violent - sports, many safety experts have questioned the long-term viability of such physically demanding sports.

    To help save sports and further understand the factors that go into diagnosing and recognizing a serious head injury, athletic sportswear giant Reebok has partnered with another firm to produce a wearable sticker capable of measuring such biometric factors.

    Hat Includes Wearable Sticker Label To Measure Impact
    MC10, a Massachusetts firm that specializes in wearable electronics, developed the new head injury-tracking sticker label in part with Reebok. The product won't be available until next year, but the company says it can be used by all coaches and sports players of all levels to help effectively diagnose the extent of a head injury.

    "If you think about how data is collected from the body, it's by using clunky straps and boxy equipment," MC10 CEO David Icke said earlier this year. "MC10 is focused on advancing that so it's seamless, thin, invisible to the user and scalable for large-scale manufacturing."

  • German Label Gives Pig Farmers Room To Breathe

    Labels Introduced To Promote Humane Farm Practices

    The recent explosion of food products with organic or eco-labels has sparked a trend. Now, many consumers are deciding what to buy based on how the label conveys the sustainable practices of the company.

    It's also led to increased calls for labels that detail the humane practices of livestock farms. Animal rights activists have long pressed governments and regulatory commissions for some kind of label that indicates how farms treat and raise their animals. They will get their wish when Germany introduces a labeling system in 2013 that does just that.

    Two-Tiered Label Initiative For Pork And Poultry
    The label will indicate to what extent the livestock was properly raised in accordance with animal protection guidelines, Deutsche Welle, a state broadcasting company, reported.

    "The animals will have more room and more space to move," Thomas Schröder, president of Germany's largest animal protection organization told Deutsche Welle. He also cited an example in the poultry industry: "Imagine a shower tub. On one square meter, you have 24 chickens. To qualify for the first level of the new label, it will have to be just under half of that."

    To date, 27 poultry and 20 hog farms have applied for the new label. Deutsche Welle said the plan is to get 5 million animals from the poultry industry and 20,000 from the hog industry to be raised in accordance with label requirements.

  • Understanding Popular, Tricky Food Labels

    Labels Don't Tell the Entire Story

    Many companies have had no problem advertising beneficial qualities on food labels, but what they haven't done so well is explaining actual nutritional information. Consumers have the right to know and often need help deciphering labels.

    Take the "organic" label, for instance. In order to display an organic label on a food product, only 70 percent of ingredients, excluding salt and water, actually need to meet organic requirements. Look for products that are labeled 100 percent organic or bear a certified USDA "100% Organic" label.

    More Than Meets The Eye For Other Labels
    One label that routinely trips up consumers is "natural." There are no actual government regulations for the use of "natural," but it loosely means foods don't contain synthetic preservatives, sweeteners or other artificial additives. It's become a buzzword for many companies to advertise in hopes of boosting business, so it's always best to be sure and check the nutrition label for yourself.

    "Gluten-free" is similar to "natural" in that it's fast becoming an industry trend and there are no set regulations guiding its use as a food label. It's especially important for people with gluten intolerance to understand labels, which can range from meaning the food has no gluten whatsoever to being processed in the same facility with other foods that do.

  • Officials Tender Label For Mechanically Tenderized Beef

    Canada Weighing Label Options

    Warning labels for meat tenderized by machines could soon be required under Canadian regulations, according to Canadian Agriculture Minister Gery Ritz.

    Ritz said both Canada and the United States were engaged in talks about the possible requirement for plants to label mechanically-tenderized beef after a recent E. coli scare forced a Canadian beef supplier to recall 1 million pounds of product, including steaks and roasts, as the result of a labeling issue.

    Ritz: Process Questionable, Label Needed
    Speaking with Canadian reporters, Ritz said a label is needed to alert customers to the process through which the beef was tenderized. He said during the tenderizing process, lesser cuts of steak are pressed with steel blades and needles to tenderize the meat, potentially driving E. coli into the center of the steak, which may not be properly cooked.

    "When it's needled in or pressed into the meat and you cook it to medium-rare ... you don't kill it, you don't get to the temperature that you need," Ritz told the Canadian Broadcasting Company]. "There's talk about making sure that people understand that if you're buying this tenderized product ... it should be labeled to warn you to cook it beyond the temperature that should be required [for non-tenderized meat]."

  • If Label Makes Green Claims, Make Sure You Mean It

    Tips To Scream Green And Avoid Misleading Label Greenwashing

    With all the negative attention and press 'greenwashing' - essentially saying a product or service is eco-friendly when it really is not - has gotten in the label printing, it's more important than ever for label makers to guarantee compliance when writing copy and designing labels. People are becoming more proactive when it comes to choosing products they feel comfortable supporting, and businesses may feel added pressure to make good on their green promises.

    The Real Costs of Eco-Friendly Labels
    Going green isn't cheap, and eco-friendly labels are no exception. Many consumers expect organic, natural and Earth-friendly products to cost more. Most manufacturers know the same to be true with packaging, labels and the products they contain. Cost may be partially to blame for corporations making false claims, whether they want to justify higher prices on their products or appear to be less expensive than competitors that truly are green and cost more.

    But the biggest challenge facing companies making false green claims is to avoid getting caught, which is no easy task thanks to consumers' interest in sustainability and corporate honesty. If a manufacturer does get caught, it risks losing everything - customers, reputation, future successes - and may even face some legal issues, too.

    The FTC's Eco-Friendly Labeling Policy
    While greenwashing labels has historically been frowned upon but still possible, the Federal Trade Commission recently put some guidelines in place to prevent corporations from misleading consumers in the future. This guideline update marks the first time since 1998 that environmental marketing guidelines have been updated. Talk about long overdue!

    Now when manufacturers make sustainability and recyclability claims (including biodegradability issues and claiming to use recycled content), they'd better be prepared to back them up. The FTC also noted that guidelines were revised because consumers assumed products labeled "eco-friendly" or "green" had more benefits than they really did have. In fact, most of the products making such claims didn't have much basis to say their products were any more eco-friendly than one not marketed as such.

    Guidelines On Labels Making Other Claims
    It's important for companies and manufacturers to remember that although the FTC guidelines have been updated regarding a product's level of environmental friendliness, there is still confusion about sustainable and/or natural eco-label materials. However, because the FTC did not define these terms in its latest update does not mean companies are able to use these terms freely without consequence, according to a New York Times article from October 2012, titled "F.T.C. Issues Guidelines for 'Eco-Friendly' Labels."

    Although organic labels are already monitored by Department of Agriculture regulations, sustainable and natural claims may essentially have multiple definitions.

    How To Create A Truly Green Label
    Companies may choose to design environmentally friendly labels and packaging as an effort to promote honest eco-friendly efforts. Whether the product is biodegradable, sustainable, organic or does something wonderful for the Earth, the label can show consumers that special care has been taken to truthfully promote green efforts.

    Label or packaging materials may come to mind when considering eco-friendly materials, and Lightning Labels' BioStone paper labels are the most eco-friendly label option on the market. Not only is it biodegradable, compostable, water-resistant, ink-absorbing and saves trees - really! - it is actually made from rocks. Kraft and vellum materials are also 100 percent recycled materials and may be used for many different label designs.

    Ink may also be eco-friendly, as can the way it's used. Consider using small-sized type and avoid wasting ink when possible. Instead of posting large graphics, try focusing more on meaningful label copy and small recycled graphics that indicate labels made from recycled or compostable materials.

    Materials, ink and graphics matter little if the size seems wasteful. Instead of providing oversized product labels that may give consumers a feeling that sustainability is just a marketing ploy, try to live by the "less is more" guidelines. People are likely to appreciate the honest approach. When possible, promote label and packaging recycling directly on the label.

  • NJ License Plate Sticker Labels Helped Prevent Crashes

    Custom Sticker Required For Teen Drivers

    Custom stickers aren't commonly thought of as an effective deterrent to car crashes, but that's exactly what a recent study found when analyzing the effects of a somewhat controversial New Jersey Law.

    The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia found that reflective decals placed on the license plates of intermediate drivers prevented 1,624 teen driving accidents in the first year of the program.

    Sticker Labels Part Of Graduated License Program
    The reflective sticker labels were introduced as part of New Jersey's graduated license program, which takes teens from driver's permit to a full license. The stickers are placed on the plates of cars driven by 17-year-old intermediate drivers.

    New Jersey's Kyleigh's Law has been hailed for its comprehensiveness after teen Kyleigh D'Alessio was killed in a car driven by a teen driver who had been in an accident and drove with a restricted license.

    "The rate of intermediate driver crashes significantly declined during the period after the decal requirement went into effect," Allison Curry, a director at the Children's Hospital. "The number of crashes prevented is equivalent to the number of students attending a large high school. New Jersey youth and other road users are safer as a result of the decals."

  • Labels Important in Making Halloween Safe

    Consult Costume Labels To Prevent Danger

    Reading labels may seem to be the last thing anyone would want to do on Halloween; after all, it's the one night when children can dress up like adults and adults can act like children - a night of spirit, festivity and relaxed inhibitions. But with all the ghouls and trolls running amok, a lot can go wrong that parents might need to watch out for.

    One of the easiest things is to check the labels on any costumes to make sure they are absolutely safe. Halloween decorations can often become an over-the-top competition among neighbors, and several potentially dangerous elements may be included in a front-yard display. Making sure a costume is labeled as "flame resistant" will effectively prevent any possible mishaps.

    Keep Safe By Reading Candy Labels
    Reading food labels is important in any circumstance, especially when that food comes from an unfamiliar source. Such is the case on Halloween, when trick-or-treaters go door to door and come back with pillowcases full of candy.

    The safety issue is not that the candy is tainted or hazardous since kids usually stay within a trusted neighborhood; however, it's always good to stay on the safe side by checking candy labels, especially if a child has a food allergy.

  • Energy Drinks Don't Hype Caffeine Levels on Labels

    Bad Labels Haunt Energy Drinks

    Highly caffeinated energy drinks have been the target of many health and nutritional advocates lately for labels loaded with unhealthy ingredients. Ever since Four Loko stepped on the scene with an alcohol and caffeine drink that presented a near-toxic mixture that is suspected in a handful of teenage drinking deaths, energy drinks have become public enemy number one in the healthy industry.

    New research also supports concerns after a study found that a majority of energy drinks are risking consumer health after they were found to improperly label, or not even bother labeling, caffeine levels.

    Caffeine Labeling Not Required
    According to a study on labels released in Consumer Reports magazine, 11 of the 27 top energy drinks sold in the United States do not specify the amount of caffeine in their beverages.

    The 16 remaining drinks that did list specific amounts were found to, on average, short-sell caffeine levels: Five beverages had caffeine that exceed serving amounts listed on their labels by more than 20 percent on average.

    One notable exception was Archer Farms Energy Drink infused beverage, which had 70 percent less caffeine than its label said.

  • UK Gives Colored Food Label Guidelines The Green Light

    Major Supermarkets Adopt Traffic Light Labels for Foods

    Food labels are an especially hot topic for discussion lately. With obesity rates growing across the globe and the often-confusing nature of traditional nutritional labels, many have called for a revamped labeling process.

    Those calls have been realized after the largest supermarkets in the United Kingdom have agreed to display a new color-coded system after some popular firms like Tesco relented and folded under the pressure to conform to the new standards.

    Green, Yellow and Red Used to Label Daily Amounts
    The new label initiative is similar to the one introduced in a recent New York Times op-ed piece by health advocate Mark Bittman. The labels will feature traffic light colors to help alleviate consumer confusion and help people make healthier decisions.

    The colors will be coordinated with guideline daily amounts, with green, yellow and red labels signifying "low," "medium" and "high" daily amounts, respectively, of fats, salt, sugars and calories.

    However, while the labeling proposal was designed to help promote a standardization to aid consumers, there are still issues with implementation.

    "The main thing that you notice at the moment is that labels are different for each different supplier," Nicole Berberian, food nutritionist, told Sky News. "They could be on the front, they could be on the side, they could be color coded, they could be randomly color coded, so it's very difficult to know what to look for."

  • Magnetic Warning Labels Not Attracting Enough Attention

    Hazardous Toy Warning Labels Ineffective

    Warning labels are often plastered on all kinds of children toys. They alert parents to watch out for ingestion and choking hazards that popular toys like minute dollhouse or puzzle pieces present. However, a group of doctors recently said warning labels do not represent enough preventative action for one certain sort of toy: Magnets.

    The North American Society for Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition (NASPGHAN) released a study that found warning labels on powerful magnetic ball toys are not doing a good enough job.

    Study: Labels Often Ignored
    NASPGHAN found that warning labels are largely ineffective. Its survey of more than 1,700 doctors found at least 480 reported incidents of magnet ingestion since labeling was required, with a nearly half, 204, occurring in the past year.

    Magnet ingestion can present serious gastrointestinal health problem - if multiple pieces are swallowed, the magnets will inherently try to connect with one another and could possibly tear holes through the stomach and bowels in the process.

    "The numbers have skyrocketed post-labeling," said Dr. Mark Gilger, a pediatric gastroenterologist and study author. "There's just many examples of people ignoring the labels, or people who haven't paid attention to them bringing them to their home inadvertently."

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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.