Uncategorized

  • LightningQuoteTM

    Get Your FREE Quote Instantly!
    Get Started

    Grow Your Garden and Lawn Care Product Sales with Custom Labels that Stand Out

    Seize the Day During National Lawn and Garden Month

    There's no season quite like spring for the lawn and garden care industry. If this is your field, now is the time to act and capture customer attention. This is especially true during April - National Lawn and Garden Month. Whether you want to tie your items in with this gardener's holiday or just celebrate spring in general, custom labels are a great choice. Dressing up your products with colorful and vibrant reminders of the season can get customers excited to do some gardening - and help your items stand out in a world of competitors.

    Be Colorful, Helpful and Exciting

    There are two ways of looking at gardening: It's either a chore or a fun activity. If your lawn care product labels give the latter impression, you may have an easier time converting shoppers and keeping them enthusiastic. You can become a knowledgeable helper for your customers by printing plant care or yard maintenance tips on your fertilizer, pesticide and seed products. These informational panels play the same role as recipes on food packaging, and encourage gardeners to pick your brand.

    Hints and information require a lot of text to get across, which means you should always work with a custom label provider capable of printing high-quality product packaging. Blurry or illegible words aren't convincing and they make your brand look unprofessional. The space you have for helpful text is extremely limited, as you don't want to skimp on bright spring imagery and a memorable logo. If the product is something potentially harmful (such as a pesticide), you have to devote some of your label space to warnings and ingredient information. High-quality printing is the way to ensure you have room for everything.

    Choose Tough Labels

    Your choice of material will play a large part in determining whether lawn care product labels end up looking good. Since these items are typically stored in garages, sheds or out in the elements, tough and waterproof labels that won't smear or fade over time are essential. Unless you go with waterproof materials, your products may look bad by the time customers need to purchase another item. If your brand name has worn off, the products won't be able to act as subtle advertisements encouraging shoppers to come back for more.

    An Ideal Partner

    When Lightning Labels is your third party of choice, you gain access to the competencies described above - many tough materials that can hold up through wet outdoor conditions, as well as speed, quality and customer service. The short time from placing an order to receiving your labels is especially important, as it means you have a chance to quickly capitalize on temporary occurrences such as National Lawn and Garden Month.

    Lawn and garden products are an industry where smaller companies can compete with the big brands. Every spring is a fresh new start, and if your products look bold, helpful and positive, you could catch shopper attention and gain new customers. If your current labeling style isn't up to the challenge, now's the time to step up.

    Request your FREE instant quote today.

  • Looking at the Road Ahead for Food Labeling

    Eyes on Upcoming Changes

    If you operate in the food manufacturing industry, your product labels change every few years. Even if you decide to stay aesthetically consistent, there are shifting regulations to comply with. In a way, these new rules are a good thing. If you have to switch up the way you list ingredients, nutrition facts and more, these enforced changes serve as great reminders to change other parts of your label designs and keep them fresh. Provided you have a helpful and capable third party handing your labeling needs, making periodic adjustments is a good approach to design.

    Now, with 2017 just underway, it's time to think about which requirements and rules are likely to either change this year or at least move toward new drafts. Will the new administration in Washington enforce new national laws, or roll them back? Or will the wheels set in motion in years past turn uninterrupted? Will states work on individual standards? Will industry-specific or overarching guidelines prove more influential this year? These questions and more will set the scene for 2017.

    Looking Back and Awaiting Guidance

    A Lexology article from law firm McGuireWoods LLP predicted the major themes affecting food and beverage labeling, explaining that legal action against labels has picked up. With the FDA considering new rules for when "natural" and "healthy" apply to products, some of the class actions have been set aside until the federal agency makes its recommendations. However, there are plenty of cases ongoing. The law firm pointed to appellate courts as the site of a significant amount of labeling-related legal wrangling.

    When it comes to concepts that will be ruled on in 2017, possibly leading to new rules or standards, McGuireWoods LLP suggested that trans fats, the word "craft," claims that items were "made in the U.S.A." and more could be the hot topics. The source explained that similar cases filed in the recent past could work their way up to the supreme court, yielding judgments that set precedent for the food and beverage industries.

    As for labeling issues to watch outside the legal system, the law firm pointed to two of the most popular recent sagas ongoing in the food and beverage industry. These are the passage of national GMO labeling rules and the FDA's ongoing quest for consistency and clarity when it comes to making claims on packages. It may seem redundant to watch these cases - you may have gotten downright sick of them in 2016 - but it pays not to look away. These guidelines might be very relevant for your next packaging revision.

    Restricting Waste

    Another rule that has previously drawn attention, but will remain relevant in the year ahead, is the U.S. Department of Agriculture Food Safety and Inspection Service's new guidance on expiration dates. Columbus Dispatch columnist Lisa Abraham explained that this is one of the "buzz" topics affecting food manufacturers at the moment, as it standardizes information that has never had universal guidelines before. For every type of product except baby formula, the introduction of standard language and a regular dating approach is a new wrinkle.

    The overall goal behind the program is reducing food waste, encouraging consumers not to throw away items that are still safe. The steps toward this objective include the uniform use of the term "best if used by," which makes it clear that the date is a measure of optimal quality, rather than safety. The USDA performed testing and determined that "best if used by" is the most likely phrase to elicit this kind of response from consumers.

    Abraham noted that the numbers indicate waste by consumers is a major overall cause of food going uneaten, and there will have to be progress in this arena if the USDA is to reach its ambitious overall waste reduction goals. For instance, the agency believes that either retailers or customers throw out 30 percent of the total wasted food in the country, just because they are unsure whether it's still safe to eat. With an overall aim of cutting waste by half in the next 13 years, and eventually preventing food waste from reaching landfills, the USDA is moving ahead with the new label style.

    Ready to Change

    The trends described above are likely to force you to print out new product labels within the next two years. However, if you're only updating your food and beverage items' appearance when legally required to do so, you are likely behind the curve. Changing a product's look is a great way to make that item draw consumers' eyes, and when you work with a labeling partner capable of printing high-quality custom labels in reasonable amounts, it's easy to make periodic updates.

    Working with Lightning Labels as your trusted third party makes a lot of sense - true to its name, Lightning Labels is fast and responsive, available to give your custom labels a new look whether you're updating your packages due to a legal requirement, or just to make them more appealing.

  • New Nutrition Facts Labels: What's Coming, and What Could be Next

    Gradual Changes on the Way

    With the new FDA-mandated nutrition facts label on the way, it may seem too soon to project what will eventually replace the recently unveiled design. However, it's important to remember that there will likely be another style on the way in a few years, with yet another to follow. So when you work with a labeling partner to change your food products' backs and get in compliance with the latest FDA style, be sure to stay in touch with that company. You never know when another new design requirement may come down the pipeline.

    Imagining Possible Next Steps

    One hint that further evolution may be in store for the nutrition facts label is that the current round of changes isn't truly that drastic. Some industry watchers would doubtless like a more thorough revision. Law Street contributor Mary Kate Leahy recently explained that while the most recent round of changes does have the potential to positively affect decision-making about food purchases, consumers may benefit more from a graphically based "traffic light" system.

    While some manufacturers would doubtless resist the traffic light labeling style due to the fact that foods without nutritional merit would be forced to say so in the form of red light graphics, there is precedent for its use. Leahy explained that the U.K. currently mandates this kind of packaging as a measure against consumer confusion. It may therefore be worth studying up on such a design, both in case the U.S. decides to follow in the U.K.'s footsteps and to see if an optional version of the traffic light graphic may prove helpful to customers.

    Canada's Changes

    After considering the potential merits of the U.K. model, it's time to see the approach Canada has taken to its own nutrition facts label. Whether for another point of comparison or because you're interested in selling your products across the border, this design is worth studying. The government's new plans for labeling include enforcement of consistent serving sizes and a font size increase for sodium. Furthermore, there is a new list of minerals and nutrients that labels should include, to reflect changing consumer priorities.

    Clarity is clearly an objective for the Canadian model, as the new labels must include actual amounts of nutrients alongside percentage daily values. This could help shoppers make decisions without referring to other sources, which is a major step in the direction of simplification and clarity. The whole design will now be capped by an explanatory note pointing out that 5 percent or less of a recommenced daily value is "a little" and greater than 15 percent qualifies as "a lot."

    Examining the FDA's Design

    While it pays to look at other countries' designs and think of how U.S. labeling laws could change in the future, the fact is it's almost time to shift to a new set of labels here, making it most worthwhile to focus on those incoming changes. Whole Foods Magazine recently took such a look, explaining some of the most important elements you'll have to take into account as a manufacturer. For instance, the new list of minerals you must declare the presence and amount of consists of calcium, potassium, iron and vitamin D. Other declarations are optional.

    The source also explained that, like in the Canadian model, there will be a footnote on American nutrition facts panels. Unlike Canada's distinction between "a little" and "a lot," this text will specify that the percentage daily values are taken from a 2,000 calorie per day diet. Today's labels have a similar message, but the revised version has been reworded for clarity.

    A simple side-by-side comparison of new and old labels, provided by the FDA, shows that text formatting is one of the main elements that will change when the new design comes into effect. The number of calories is far larger than before, and the serving size has been bolded and enlarged. While the previous version of the nutrition facts label is largely a list of similar-sized items, the new one's hierarchy of importance is clearer.

    A Loyal Labeling Partner

    Getting ready to print new nutrition facts labels on your products is a great opportunity to redesign other elements. Whether that means adding additional health information or just adopting compelling new imagery, it's time to work with a competent labeling partner to ensure your project goes well and the revised designs roll out on schedule, potentially far in advance of the FDA's hard deadlines.

    Lightning Labels can become your ally in this mission of modernization, using its state-of-the-art digital processes to turn your project around quickly and efficiently. Lightning Labels has a commitment to customer service that helps it strike up long-term relationships with clients. This will prove helpful when the next regulatory changes come down the pipeline and you have to change your designs again. As long as you have a great food label provider in your corner, you can take shifts in policy in stride and keep up.

  • Craft Beer Brewers Turn to Die Cut Labels to Make Their Beer Labels Stand Out

    Stake Your Place in The Craft Beer Boom

    If you run a brewery, the current consumer market is full of opportunities and challenges alike. While trying interesting brews has become a cultural fixation, allowing you to reach a new audience, there are plenty of rival companies entering the market to challenge you. This is the field you have to compete on, and there are benefits to staking out a unique and interesting look for your brand. This is where custom beer labels come in, acting as a way to present your personality to the world, standing out on crowded shelves of liquor stores.

    Stories and "Weirdness"

    When you're creating a unique design for your craft beer labels, you should ensure your brand's identity is ably represented. This may mean picking quirky or otherwise interesting subject matter. Broadsheet pointed out that when craft brewers go toe-to-toe with the national brands for customer eyes, they do so from a position of relative weakness when it comes to marketing budgets and support networks. How do you bridge this gap? You tell a story with your design, whether that means choosing bold imagery or literally printing your story.

    You can look outside the box for inspiration when it comes to label design. The source noted that while your large competitors are held back by their years of tradition and established identities, an independent brewery is speaking a different language. You can go for warmth and comfort or quirkiness and uniqueness, all depending on what your beer tastes like and how you want different segments of the audience to perceive the brew.

    Beer and wine store executives Paul Ghaie and Eden Gilbert told Broadsheet that the next few years in the market may see a shift toward the more unique and bold end of the spectrum. The vast world of craft brands is seeing its own trends and patterns that your labels will have to differentiate themselves from. The pressure is on to come up with a unique look and make it resonate.

    Die Cut Designs Pop From the Shelves

    When its time to order beer labels for your brand, you can turn to die cut labels as a way to further improve your brew's visual appeal. These labels come carefully cut into shape, rather than simply wrapping around the bottle. Going with a bold design that works well as a die cut label is a way to boost your product's visual profile on the shelves.This is an especially useful tactic if your bottles are a unique size, shape or color and you're keen to show off their attributes.

    Lightning Labels can work with you on your custom beer label product to ensure you enter this competitive market with a strong visual identity. With a variety of materials, die cut shapes and finishes available, you can pick the options that suit your company's story or unique identity. Whether you want to use a local photo, a mascot character or any other piece of brand collateral you can imagine, it will look great rendered on Lightning Labels' state-of-the-art printers.

    When you order from Lightning Labels, the whole process can take a matter of days, as the company's commitment to using domestic facilities instead of outsourcing and an all-digital print process act as ways to speed up the transaction. Your brand's new look can't wait, as there are competitors both local and national waiting to move in on your territory. Quickly receiving labels that define your brew visually and draw customers' eyes can strengthen your position as the craft brew boom goes on and more consumers search for interesting new drinks.

  • New USDA Rules Coming for Food Product Labeling

    Obeying Food Labeling Rules

    Companies that produce foods and beverages face unique product packaging demands, with a host of regulations to oblige before they even get around to aesthetic decisions. If your business operates in this area, you've already navigated the rules and gotten into compliance. However, in the years ahead, important changes are on the way. The latest announcements come from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and have to do with the "sell by" or "use by" label - which has a new name, as well as the compliance dates for meat and poultry regulations.

    Cutting Down on Food Waste

    Food Processing explained that the USDA's recommendation - to implement a new "best if used by" label across the food production world - is designed to prevent waste. Today, different manufacturers use a variety of expiration date formats. These listings are voluntary for all products except infant formula, which requires the use of expiration dates. The new guidance is meant to ensure that wherever optional dating is employed, companies are working with the same vocabulary and format.

    Faced with a patchwork of phrases, including "sell by" and "use by," consumers may be thinking of the listed dates as hard cutoffs for freshness, and throwing food away that is still good. Food Processing noted that by standardizing the use of dating systems, and employing the phrase "best if used by," the USDA is hoping to ensure that shoppers will be better informed. People will now gain the knowledge that products of a certain age may have degraded in quality, but aren't necessarily unsafe. A hard-seeming "use by" date encourages individuals to throw food out, which causes waste.

    The recommendation comes after a period of research into the effects of different types of phrases. According to Food Processing, the USDA's Food Safety Inspection Service settled on the final wording because high rates of people get the intended meaning. Implementing a blanket description across the food world is a big moment for the industry, and it was important for the agency to make sure its chosen version of the label is helpful.

    Meat and Poultry Compliance Dates

    Another announcement from the USDA FSIS concerns the meat and poultry industries. According to Food Safety News, this release isn't about any one rule. Rather, it's a notice that any regulations applied to meat and poultry production in 2017 and 2018 will go into effect on the first day of 2020. This gives producers a minimum of two years to adapt and get in compliance, though the agency would rather companies change practices as soon as rules are added to the books, rather than waiting for the deadline.

    The news source reported that the January 1, 2020 date will keep the FSIS in line with the Food and Drug Administration's labeling deadlines. Two years between announcement and implementation will allow organizations more than enough time to revise their labeling strategies. According to the FSIS guidance, a hard deadline for label changes is friendly to both companies and customers, as businesses won't have to change their labeling strategies too often, alterations which could lead to higher sticker prices.

    Ready for Anything

    The strategy you apply to your food labels will necessarily be impacted by regulations, but you don't have to worry about staying current in compliance, at least when you work with Lightning Labels. As an all-digital printing partner, Lightning Labels enables you to order relatively small quantities of stickers and labels for your products. This means no leftover or wasted labels when regulations change, and an ability to react quickly to any new regulations, getting well ahead of the deadlines. With a third party such as Lightning Labels on your side, you'll be able to stay ahead of the USDA's schedule rather than barely keeping up.

  • Eco-friendly Labeling May Provide A Breakthrough with Millennials

    Passion for Earth-friendly Packaging

    What defines the millennial generation? Ask 100 people and you'll get 100 answers. Some say millennials are socially responsible optimists. Others state that they're too consumed with digital interactions. Still others find them to be hard workers who have erased some of the boundaries between home and business life. One common thread in overviews of young people today, however, is their interest in things good for both them and the earth. Marketers can make headway with millennials by creating raw, healthful and environmentally friendly brand images.

    One of the most effective ways to define a company is to generate a new labeling strategy. If you're in the process of carving out a new identity for your company - or underlining traits that have been there all along - consider working with custom product labels. There's always a chance people will miss an advertisement or decide not to go to your website, but packaging is right in shoppers' line of sight, nigh-inescapable. Brand images that appeal to the earth-friendly interests of young shoppers may prove hugely valuable, especially if you walk the talk and use environmentally kind materials.

    Follow the Trends

    BrandCulture's Eric Pinckert recently explained for CPI Financial that the quest for more environmentally conscious or responsible brand images is a major 2017 trend. The author noted that minimal packaging and the use of recycled materials in both labels and the products inside the boxes and wrappers will be persistent themes. Truth is the key word here, with millennials and Generation Z interested in ensuring the companies follow through on their rhetoric and actually use materials that keep the earth safe.

    The expert noted that transparency will have to be more unfiltered in 2017 than ever before, and the trend will extend to all corners of a company's image. This will have an impact on what should and shouldn't go on labels, as well. Pinckert warned that a lot of text stating that a company is real and authentic could ring false. Instead of just writing out promises, brands will have to follow through and make promises they can keep. Working with truly earth-friendly materials in both items and labels is one example of walking the walk in this way.

    Natural, recyclable items are a stark contrast to the mass-produced consumer products of recent decades. Imagine seeing an item with a recycled label, perhaps a product that is itself biodegradable, next to an equivalent in a plastic package that could end up polluting the ocean or staying in a landfill for ages. The choice is clear and, as Pinckert noted, young people may prove willing to pick a more expensive option if its labeled durably.

    Design considerations

    When dressing your brand up to appeal to young consumers, every single decision can point in an earth-friendly direction. This kind of consistency tends to create an intuitive experience, showing a consuming commitment to being both health-friendly and earth-conscious and marking you as a company that has good intentions. Food Business News reported from the 2016 NACS snack industry trade show, where Lehi Valley Trading Co. Director of Marketing Jacque Taylor described the process of creating a clean, millennial-friendly brand image.

    Taylor, in slight contrast to Pinckert, explained that it's important to produce labels affordably enough to keep the cost of food products down - but once you achieve this level of value, it's important to create an image that pleases the audience with natural overtones, from the selected colors to the chosen imagery. Creating a label means summoning a mood, and the more the package evokes nature and wellness, the better it will be with earth-lovers.

    "In going into the design itself, we knew, for example, the millennial consumer is looking for natural, eco-friendly. Natural, eco-friendly label design was one of the things we incorporated," Taylor told the news provider.

    Working with an Expert Partner

    When designing an eco-conscious image, it's important to get the details right and work with a partner that can give you a thoroughly green option while keeping costs reasonable. Lightning Labels can deliver with its multiple recycled label options. Kraft labels, for instance, are made of 100-percent post-consumer waste materials. Their appearance is natural and earthy, and they are tough enough to be machine-applied en masse. Kraft isn't the only option, either - Vellum labels are also made from 100 percent recycled content.

    While not recycled, Earthfirst PLA labels offer a different take on nature friendliness. This material is similar to ones made with petrochemicals, but is made with Polylactic Acid, a corn-based biopolymer. No matter what kind of image you're going for, Lightning Labels can not only get the intended effect at a reasonable cost, it can give you an earth-friendly approach your customers will appreciate. Your products won't just look like they're eco-positive, with the right custom labels they can walk the talk.

  • 2017 Begins with New FDA Labeling Requirements

    Keep an Eye on New FDA Labeling Requirements

    When you produce food or beverages, there's never a good time to tune out or stop paying attention to labeling laws and regulations. Regulators make sure to give you time to adjust your labels and comply with the rules, but you should still be as prompt as possible at identifying and responding to relevant moves by the major bodies in charge of packaging.

    The early days of 2017 have borne out the need for vigilance, with the the U.S. Food and Drug Administration already rolling out some announcements regarding upcoming adjustments to the laws. When you have a good grasp of the legal situation and an agile labeling partner on your side, it's possible to stay up on these requirements, and even to get ahead of them and give your customers a smooth transition from one type of labeling to the new standards.

    Comment Period Extended

    Do you have any valuable input on what should be considered "healthy"? If so, you have a few months left to tell the FDA. According to Food Safety News, the public comment deadline for what the word "healthy" is allowed to mean on food packages is now March 26, 2017. This is a revision from the previous date of January 26, and if you have anything to submit, this extension gives you time. Comments can be made either publicly or directly to the FDA in confidence.

    According to the news source, industry groups asked for the extension. The Grocery Manufacturers of America wanted more time for comments due to the fact that the end of the year tends to be busy for retailers and customers alike, leaving less time for affected parties to register their opinions about the "healthy" label.

    As for groups that have already made comments, Food Safety News specified that the United Egg Producers stepped up in favor of adding eggs to the definition of "healthy." Current restrictions involving saturated fat and cholesterol are the sticking point, but the industry body cited eggs' place in the Dietary Guidelines for Americans model diets as proof that eggs can be a healthy food and deserve the use of the related language.

    The very fact that the word "healthy" is back up for debate is due to an actual issue encountered by the FDA in 2015, according to the source. The inciting incident was a legal showdown between KIND, makers of fruit and grain bars, and the government body. The FDA told KIND that four of its "healthy"-labeled products did not comply with the present definition of that word, while KIND claimed that the science behind that label has since been superseded. Now, it's time for the public to have its say before the new law comes into effect.

    Are your products currently eligible to be called "healthy?" Might they be under a revised version of the labeling law? If you have any stake in this ongoing process, it's likely worth watching what happens next regarding the legal wrangling.

    Final Guidance Documents

    The first days of 2017 have been a busy time for FDA announcements, as Natural Products Insider recently noted the existence of two new draft guidance documents, both of which are entering their own comment periods. Now, you have 60 days from their publication on January 5 to register your opinion. The first draft concerns many important elements of the new labels - rounding of figures, the compliance date, how to label added sugars and even the thickness and spacing of lines in graphics are all discussed in the document. The second release consists of examples to help manufacturers develop serving sizes.

    With the new Nutrition Facts label representing a significant updating of a packaging element that has been stagnant for a long time, it is likely worthwhile to study these new documents and potentially register comments. No matter what kind of food or beverage you produce, the way you note the values of different ingredients, nutrients and serving recommendations could have an effect on consumer perception.

    When will you finally have to implement the coming changes and shift over to the new label format? This is one of the questions tackled in the latest round of guidance, as Natural Product Insider highlighted. Items that receive their labels before July 26, 2018 are the last batch that do not need the new-style Nutrition Facts panel. This date is one year later - July 26, 2019 if you sell less than $10 million of food each year.

    Time to Partner Up

    With regulations changing and new rules always being mooted, it's clear that you'll need a labeling partner on your side in the years ahead. This is where Lightning Labels can help, offering custom product labels for food and beverage manufacturers that look great and keep products in compliance with all relevant laws. Due to Lightning Labels' all-digital processes, you don't have to order huge amounts of labels at once. This means that when rules change, you don't end up with wasted labels fitting the old regulations.

  • January is National Hobby Month - Label Your Craft Products

    Show Off Your Work This January

    January is National Hobby Month, meaning it's time to salute handmade items and crafts of all kinds. When your hobby becomes a small business, you need great-looking branding to show your pride in your crafting abilities. Whether you make candles, soap, craft beer, preserves, jelly, jam or any other kind of item, custom labels can catch eyes and draw attention.

    You've put in time honing your craft and keeping your project alive over the years. Now it's time to ensure your handiwork earns recognition, whether you sell your products in major stores, at markets and fairs, or just to friends and family. It's never too early or too late to give a fresh, attractive brand identity to your crafts.

    From a Hobby to a Career

    Today, customers crave a handmade touch in their items - the authenticity and care that you put into your crafts may help them take off. Labeling requirements and strategies will vary based on the products in question, but there's no doubt that an attractive branding strategy can help you stand out. The following list is a far-from-exhaustive look at some crafting types that can turn into fruitful careers.

    • Candles: Creating candles is an especially appealing hobby in the winter months, when a candle can provide a sense of light, warmth and wellbeing in the midst of ice and snow. Using custom candle labels, you can play up the comfy nature of your products - while also giving vital safety info to show your customers you're looking out for them. You can even vary your strategy into something less snow-bound to keep going strong into spring.
    • Soap: The variety of textures, scents and colors you can base soaps around is near-limitless. As a hobbyist or small-business owner, you have freedom to produce small batches of soaps with fascinating attributes that will win customers over. Use your custom soap labels to describe exactly what goes into each bar and impress upon your buyers that they're getting an experience they won't be able to replicate working with huge brands.
    • Craft beer: Beer is perhaps the symbol of the craft goods craze of recent years. A taste for unique flavors in small batches has turned huge swaths of the population into beer connoisseurs. Global brands are turning to local breweries for inspiration instead of vice versa. If you're a small-batch beer producer, make sure your custom craft beer labels show off your regional and independent bona fides. Let people know that you're not a pretender - you're a real local brewer.

    Crafts Deserve Great Labels

    Whether you're looking for custom beer labels to draw in curious buyers or searching for a high-impact way to market your candles, Lightning Labels can help. Small producers just starting out don't have to worry about making minimum order cutoffs - because Lightning Labels is an all-digital printer, small batches of labels are affordable. January is getting underway, but it's not too late to act within the month: By using digital processes and working from domestic facilities instead of outsourcing, Lightning Labels is able to turn orders around in days, not weeks or months.

  • Baby it's Cold Outside! Use Temperature Resistant Labels that Can Stand the Temperatures

    Tough Labels for Rough Weather

    The coldest months of the year loom ahead, and if you make products meant to be displayed outside during the winter, you're going to need to ensure they're made of appropriate materials. There's no value in a label that peels off of its product before it can pass on its marketing message, and that's why it pays to carefully manage your labeling for outdoor goods - or even ones that could conceivably be stored or transported through the cold. Fortunately, you don't have to sacrifice vibrant colors or high-quality imagery to get the temperature sensitive labels you need this winter.

    The Cold Months Are Here

    It's December, which means it's a great time to check on your labeling strategy. Items that are displayed, stored or transported in cold temperatures may be looking worse for wear when they reach their destinations. This is a major problem for your brand because labeling is an important way to perform last-minute marketing and get people excited to purchase the item in question. If the labels' adhesive is giving out, it doesn't matter how long you spent on their graphic design, that part of the presentation is lost. This is where temperature resistant labels come in, staying strong in inclement weather.

    In addition to your main labels, it's possible to add stickers that stay in place during the colder months. These temperature resistant stickers can even impart seasonal information such as the temperatures a product can withstand. The stickers then strengthen the impression that the item works at low temperatures by looking good even when they're displayed in the cold. Stickers are a good addition to a labeling strategy in that their deployment can be flexible. You can add seasonal stickers during the winter, then remove them from unsold items in spring to try a new set of relevant seasonal tactics.

    When deciding whether your labels and stickers have to be strong enough to withstand cold temperatures, don't just think about outside-focused items. Imagine the warehouses where items will be stored and the trucks that will carry them. If any stage of the process will be particularly cold during the winter months, it's best to go with temperature sensitive labels or stickers.

    Time to Order

    Is it too late to launch a new labeling or sticker strategy that will take effect this winter? Not if your company works with Lightning Labels. True to its name, Lightning Labels is able to offer lightning-fast turnaround on orders. You can know that your stickers and labels will be with you in a matter of days, rather than weeks or months, due to Lightning Labels' ongoing commitment to not outsourcing its production and its use of digital printing.

    With many different materials available, you can pick one that will survive the harsh temperatures of winter - or refrigerated environments, if you sell and item that needs to be cold year-round. On top of the added toughness, you don't have to sacrifice your products' appearance. Lightning Labels works with materials that enable high-quality printing of impactful and sharp imagery.

  • December 17 is National Maple Syrup Day - Are you Ready?

    Time to Update Your Labels and Stickers

    Maple syrup brings sweetness to breakfast - or any meal of the day - but it can go under-appreciated. That's why December 17 is set aside to celebrate this champion of condiments. If you produce or bottle syrup, this is a great promotional opportunity. Through custom bottle labels or stickers, you can remind shoppers of the special day or give them some recipes to try. A temporary change in packaging may be just the thing to stir up some business, or convince buyers to pick your brand out of the many on shelves.

    Offer a Recipe

    When it comes to pancakes, waffles and French toast, syrup obviously can't be bettered But what about its role in creative cooking? To draw some attention on and around National Maple Syrup Day, you can employ custom syrup labels that list exciting and delicious recipes. This is an effective tactic because it not only gives people a concrete reason to bring home a new bottle of syrup, but also ensures that they pick your brand, so they can have easy access to the recipe.

    National Maple Syrup Day is one possible event to commemorate with a recipe, but the tactic doesn't have to end with December. Have a look at the calendar of upcoming holidays and other food-specific events, and you'll be sure to find several relevant dates throughout the year. Changing things up with new custom food labels, maybe even launching several different designs at once, can keep drawing new customers to your particular syrup brand.

    Reminder Stickers

    Maybe your labels are already printed and applied to the bottles, but you still want to commemorate National Maple Syrup Day. There's an easy way to accomplish this feat - customized stickers. Going with stickers instead of labels is a low-key way to create visual interest in your syrup. Then, if the special day passes and you still have bottles on the shelves, you can peel off the stickers. If you have unused stickers - and didn't print the year on them - go ahead and stick them on bottles when the event rolls around next year.

    Quick Response

    While there's precious few days until National Maple Syrup Day this year, Lightning Labels is in the business of speedily filling orders. The company, true to its name, is capable of lightning-fast turnaround times on orders, with waits measured in days rather than weeks or months. This is due to the all-digital printing processes Lightning Labels uses, as well as the business's decision to stick with nearby and convenient domestic facilities, instead of outsourcing its printing.

    Getting customized bottles on the shelves for National Maple Syrup Day can prove to be an exciting new promotional avenue, whether you approach the task via stickers or labels. Lightning Labels can help in either case, becoming your partner in improving your brand's visual impact. While maple syrup's delicious taste is incentive enough for shoppers to buy it in most cases, you need to make sure these browsing grocery buyers pick your brand - and that's where bold and exciting labels can really help.

1-10 of 373

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.