Labeling Innovations from Weber

Chris Erbach

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DataMatrix Bar Code Basics for GS1 Healthcare Labeling

Posted by Chris Erbach

Aug 16, 2019 9:14:58 AM

 

Barcodes can be found everywhere – whether on the food packaging in the supermarket, on the shipping package in logistics or on component parts in industrial production. It's no wo

nder, because they are an essential tool for Automatic Identification and Data Capture (AIDC). Scanning barcode labels with a device is just so much faster than entering information into a system by hand. In addition, it results in fewer errors because machines are simply more reliable in this task.

However, not all barcodes are the same. Among them is one that plays a key role in many industrial applications such as GS1 in Healthcare: the Data Matrix code. In this article, you will learn more about its particular benefits.

DataMatrix, barcode, QR code – what is the difference?

There are different types of barcodes. They can be divided into:

  • one-dimensional (1D) barcodes where data is encoded in one direction only
  • two-dimensional (2D) barcodes which encode data in the form of an area across two directions.

One-dimensional barcodes such as EAN codes consist of varying widths and spacings of parallel lines. They are also called linear barcodes.

Just like QR codes, datamatrix codes are 2D barcodes. They are usually square in shape and encode information in the form of square black and white dots, forming the so-called timing pattern. It can encode up to 1556 bytes or up to 3116 digits. At one edge you will also see ​​an L-shaped finder pattern consisting of two solid adjacent borders. This part helps scanners to locate and orient the DataMatrix code.

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Topics: GS1 DataMatrix, DataMatrix bar codes, GS1 Healthcare GS1, Markoprint Ink Jet Coders


Wild Onion Brewery - Great Beer Plus Environmental Stewardship

Posted by Chris Erbach

Jul 18, 2019 9:49:43 AM

What was once farmland and an abandoned quarry has become a small piece of paradise in the northwest Chicago suburbs. Wild Onion Brewery is one of Chicago’s first craft breweries of the modern era, firing up their first batch of Paddy Pale Ale in 1996. Family-owned, and located just off Route 14 in Lake Barrington, IL, this small but mighty brewer has seen steady, well-managed growth for over 23 years.

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Topics: craft beer labels, craft beer can labels, craft beer label materials, craft beer brewers, wild onion brewery


Desktop Label Printers To Fit Your Budget & Your Printing Needs

Posted by Chris Erbach

Jun 20, 2019 9:32:06 AM

What do you do when you need a low-cost label printer, often at a remote location, able to print labels when you need them and maintain high quality?

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Topics: Zebra GC Printers, Zebra GX printers, Zebra GK printers, Zebra G Series label printers, Zebra desktop label printers


How To Get The Right Food Labels On Your Products

Posted by Chris Erbach

Jun 6, 2019 10:25:00 AM

Manufacturers often find custom food labeling and packaging a challenging process, especially transitioning from the warehouse to the store door.  There are many questions for manufacturers to answer, including:

  • What do you need to include on your food labels?
  • What’s the best process to get the food labels on the packaging in a consistent, efficient manner?

Having the right labeling is critically important for both your sales team and overall revenue, as well as for consumer information. This article will walk through what needs to be included on food labels, what the best process is for labeling, and how print-and-apply print engines work to make the process efficient and productive.

What’s Required on your Labels? 

Complying with complex regulations, which can vary from state-to-state, can be difficult for many people who create food products. You need a reliable and secure food-labeling system that guarantees not only content accuracy but also performance for the application (for example, sticking to a container that will be kept in cold, warm or wet environments).

So, what does your business need?

The FDA requires a statement of identity, net contents, a nutrition facts panel, ingredient statement, warnings for allergens, and the name and place of your business. The FDA does not require “use by”, “best buy,” or similar information on food. However, there is a proposed federal law to standardize food date information to make it easier for consumers to understand.

When applying labels, there are things you want to avoid. Two of the most important are:

  • Obsolete labels with incorrect information
  • Not having enough of the correct labels for your labeling run

These concerns are why you want to think twice about having “Best by” and similar label dates in your preprinted label with original artwork. While it’s possible to add dates to custom labels, it’s not the most productive or efficient option for your business. And ensuring you have enough labels for your products requires extra pre-planning that doesn’t always work out.

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Topics: Food Labels, food safety, Zebra ZE500 print engine, food labeling systems


Our Top 11 Favorite Craft Beer Label Designs

Posted by Chris Erbach

May 29, 2019 9:41:00 AM

 

I was walking through our Digital Label Printing area the other day, and was struck by all the beautiful labels we have been printing lately. We keep a special rack of label sample rolls from jobs we've completed as examples of unique materials and fantastic designs.

And it should be no surprise that many of the awesome looking labels were from our craft beer customers. I thought I would share my top 11 picks along with some info about the breweries in case you happen to be in their neighborhood with a thirst.

1. Able Seedhouse and Brewery - Minneapolis, MN

One of our favorite breweries in the Minneapolis area, Able Seedhouse + Brewery is a well-known community-active brewery in Northeast Minneapolis. They have a habit of obscure yet creative names for their brews, like references to Seinfeld or song lyrics. And the beer we're showing here is awesome.

This is an amazing label with a fantastic design. Able Brewery created their Grim Arcana beer, a double brown ale (7.9% ABV), with Able rye malt smoked by their in-house BBQ food truck Animales and packaged it in 9 oz. cans.

The label design is highly detailed with layered colors including a gold metallic that creates the outlines on the geometric designs and the calavera skulls. A matte lamination seals the label giving it a soft non-sheen look except where the metallic colors show through. Great contrast.

And one of the unique features of this label is the addition of a Spotify code on the side of the label. This code links to a playlist developed by the brewers to enhance the drinking experience when listened to during consumption. A really cool extra touch, especially if you listen to this one!

Founded in 2015, Able Seedhouse + Brewery is a community of creative, hard-working and thoughtful people dedicated to building locally-inspired and ultra-fresh beer.

Every concept, piece of art, package, design, and beer poured at Able are the result of a very curious group of people and the community supporting them.

ABLE is located in the Arts District of Northeast Minneapolis at 1121 Quincy St NE. Check out their taproom, active event schedule and an evolving beer menu. ABLE is also home to Animales Barbeque Company

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Topics: craft beer can labels, craft beer label materials


High-Speed Print-Apply Just Got Easier With New Label/Ribbon Combo

Posted by Chris Erbach

May 16, 2019 7:01:35 AM

One of the biggest down-time issues facing large companies that use print-apply labeling systems is frequency of the label and ribbon changeovers. 

Label printer-applicators are the most efficient way to print variable data labels, like shipping labels, and apply them accurately on passing cartons and packages. But sooner or later you will have to shut down the line to change the empty label or ribbon rolls on each of your systems. A good operator can do that in a few minutes or even faster, but unless you have redundant systems that enable zero-down-time, you have to stop your production.

A typical label printer-applicator uses 12" diameter rolls of 4"x6" blank shipping labels and contains approximately 2500 labels per roll. If you are applying, say, 6 labels per minute (slow), that would be about 2880 labels per 8 hour shift. You would have to change a roll of labels every day. Faster line speeds would require multiple changes per day. And if you are running 10 or 20 labeling systems, that can be a time-consuming task.

And don't forget about the ribbons that go with the labels. You would probably be using a corresponding 4.02" x 1,476' wax ribbon to imprint your labels. Those are somewhat longer than your labels and would require a changeover shortly after you change your label roll. Minimum change would also be once a day on average. 

It adds up fast.

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Topics: ECO thermal-transfer ribbons, Transthin 400 labels


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