Labels Carry the Message

A high-quality, easy-to-read label allows a product to speak for itself.

A user's acquaintance with a product begins with the label, and there are many ways to make an excellent first impression. Clear labels, colored labels, and labels that accept clean-looking text are all pluses, but packaging engineers know that other characteristics besides appearance are important. Manufacturers make label materials that can adhere to low-energy surfaces or conform to any size container. Many produce custom labels for special needs and can provide a particular kind of adhesive.



Two label films designed for vials, ampules, tubes, and bottles are conformable, shrink resistant, and can be dispensed at high speeds. Pharmcal 2-mil film is coated with clear polypropylene and backed with a 1.5-mil polyester release liner. Its adhesive is permanent and photoluminescent. Pharmcal 2.3-mil film is coated with white polypropylene and backed with a 1.0-mil polyester release liner; it has an acrylic adhesive. The 2.3-mil film may be used as an alternative to pharmaceutical-grade pressure-sensitive paper. Flexcon, Spencer, MA.



Labels, tags, and thermal-transfer ribbons are designed to meet demanding printing applications. Crafted from high-quality material, the products in the Techno Therm line include several facestock and ribbon selections that can be combined to meet any labeling requirements. Linerless labels, various design options, and custom label sizes are all available. Sato America Inc., Sunnyvale, CA.



By adding printing and converting technology, a shrink-and-stretch film company enhances its capabilities. The company produces both heat-shrinkable and polyethylene stretch films. Narrow- and wide-web flexographic printing is available, as well as art development and plate making. The company preforms the product to customer specifications and maintains a full inventory of flat stock and tubing. Coastal Sleeve Label Inc., Brunswick, GA.



A destructible vinyl label material for tamper-evident applications is strong enough for use in high-speed presses and a variety of die configurations. The material also works on hard-to-bond surfaces and low-surface-energy plastics. A smooth facestock creates fewer surface aberrations, which improves bar code readability, offers even ink coverage, and allows greater printing consistency. Engineered for durability in adverse conditions, the material also works on a variety of tamper-resistant applications. 3M, St. Paul, MN.



Laser and thermal-transfer labels are designed to meet unique specifications. A company offers a selection of die-cut blank or imprinted laser sheets in 8½ x 11- or 8½ x 14-in. formats. Thermal-transfer and direct-thermal labels are also available. They have a 1/8-in. space, a perforation between labels, and most are 1 in. across and wound on 3-in. cores. The adhesive attaches the label stock firmly to the core while allowing a quick, clean, and uniform release. General-purpose wax ribbons are designed to print at speeds up to 12 in./sec and attain a high-quality image. AmeriComm Label Systems, Amherst, NH.



A variety of labeling products and services are available to meet specific demands. A company offers multicolor hot-stamp, flexographic, and four-color printing processes. Pressure-sensitive, decorative emblems are applied to labels to include product or company names. The company also offers precision die-cutting for any size, dimension, or shape. Spectrophotometer color matching is used to consistently match products. Becker's Fabrication Inc., Yorba Linda, CA.



Four-color labels incorporate logos, graphics, and color coding to enhance the critical data that must be included on printed products. The labels are printed on paper, polyester, vinyl, and other substrates. Labels can be shipped with color enhancements only, with bar codes, and with other variable data to be added by the customer. Alternatively, labels may be fully preprinted prior to shipment, complete with bar codes. Imtec Inc., Bellows Falls, VT.



A lamination process is suited for market and package design testing and sampling. The process, called QuikLam, laminates typical paper-poly and foil-poly structures with 0.75 mil polypropylene as they are printed in up to five colors. QuikLam creates the look and feel of reverse-printed polyester and is ideal for short-run and short-lead-time label and flexible packaging projects. The company also offers a full line of pharmaceutical compliance printing, which includes pressure-sensitive and heat-seal roll labels, roll inserts, flexible packaging, blister backs and specialty projects. Altwood Roll Label Co., Elmwood Park, NJ.



A company has added a line of label products with pressure-sensitive coating to its products and services. This addition allows the company to provide pressure-sensitive labeling products with emulsion adhesive systems. The company continues to offer hot-melt pressure-sensitive products, contract coating, and liner system development. Print-O-Tape Inc., Mundelein, IL.

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