Been There, Labeled That -- Weber's Blog on Labels

Corner-Wrap Automation Helps Mrs. Gerry's Meet Labeling Requirements

Posted by Chris Erbach

Jan 8, 2019 11:05:00 AM

 

 One of the biggest challenges for companies that manufacture and sell products to large supermarket and retail chains is meeting the mandated labeling requirements. If you are shipping your products to their giant distribution centers, you need to have all your product labeling in step or they might not accept your shipment.

This was the case for one of Minnesota’s largest salad and side dish purveyors, Mrs. Gerry’s. They were requested to start applying adjacent corner labels to their cartons of prepared salads, side dishes, desserts, and coleslaws. These labels had to contain the GS1 information for the product including use by date, product information, and bar codes for tracking. 

Steady growth has been the trademark for Mrs. Gerry’s which had a humble start back in 1973 when Gerry and Jerry Vogt founded the company in support of Jerry’s sales position selling meats to grocery stores. Jerry wanted to offer more food-related products so he could provide a full menu to his clients. They bought a small building of just 1,100 square feet in Albert Lea, Minnesota, adding two stoves, a sink, and a cooler, and they were in business.

Gerry’s family became the first employees and they used Mrs. Gerry’s family recipe for potato salad as the first product. The company began to grow and, using fresh local ingredients, turned out 70,000 pounds of salad by hand in 1974. New recipes were added and building additions were added to accommodate the expanding product lines.

Fast forward to 2018 and Mrs. Gerry’s now sells over 35 millions pounds of product a year in their 215,000 square-foot facility. The company sells over 120 different products including pasta salads, cole slaws, salad kits, desserts, Premium Mashed Potatoes and much more. Sourcing their ingredients locally as much as possible, about 90% of their potatoes are grown within 15 miles of the Albert Lea plant. They buy massive truckloads of potatoes which are off-loaded in seconds using a whole truck tilt unloading system. 

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Topics: Food Labels, CIJ, Bestcode, Go-Mark 100 Wax Ribbons, Label printer applicator, GS1 labeling, food safety, corner-wrap label printer applicator


4 Reasons to Use Go-Mark 100 Wax Ribbons

Posted by Chris Erbach

Jun 21, 2017 9:21:20 AM

What is the best ribbon to use in my thermal-transfer label printer?

Good question. 

Most people never stop to think about whether they are using the most efficient, cost-effective ribbon for their every-day labels. They just keep ordering the brand that came with their Zebra or Sato label printer.

But there have been many new advancements in ribbon technology that could help users save money on label costs and maintenance. So here are four good reasons to check and see if you are getting the best bang for your buck with your ribbons and how Weber's Go-Mark 100 ribbons might change your mind.

One: What are you labeling?

Most people that use thermal-transfer label printers from manufacturers like Zebra, Datamax and Sato are printing simple paper labels for bar code or shipping labels. These labels are mostly single use, applied usually to a shipping carton or envelope, and don't need to last more than a week or so. They get ripped off and throw away after the package arrives. Done.

Barring any extreme handling or careless shipment, standard wax ribbons work just fine for shipping and bar code labels. Depending on the ribbon, you get a dark black transfer of the text or image onto plain paper labels that are fairly durable. But beware; some wax ribbons don't print dark enough or transfer the ink from the ribbon correctly, making the label hard to read. Buy quality wax ribbons from a good source.

Weber's Go-Mark 100 wax ribbons feature a rich blackness for basic label printing applications such as shipping and product identification labels. The new ribbons are compatible with both coated and uncoated label materials, working well with flood-coated color labels, too.

If you need a more durable print on your label, say for a label that will endure abrasion or needs to last more than a week, you can step up to a wax/resin formulation ribbon that will last longer. But the price increases, too. If you don't worry about harsh treatment or longevity, stick with simple wax ribbons.

Also, be sure to pick a ribbon that fits the size requirements of your label. Don't use a 4-inch wide ribbon if your label printing area is only 2 inches wide. You can use a less-expensive ribbon by selecting a ribbon just slightly wider than the label width. For example, if you have only a 2" wide label,  use a 2.36" width ribbon instead of a 4.06" ribbon which is more money per roll. But remember, it is important that the ribbon be slightly wider than the label to protect the printhead.

Two: Print head maintenance

One of the inherent problems with thermal-transfer label printing is keeping the print head happy. Inside each printer is a heating device that transfers the ink from the ribbon to the label surface. Read this blog of ours about to see how that works.

The print head can get finicky when dirt and dust from the workplace (or just paper dust from the label roll) starts clogging it up.  Your label will have areas of missing print indicating it's time for maintenance on the printer.

And easy way to avoid this problem is to clean the print head after every ribbon change. But not many people want to take the time to open the print head and do the work.

The new Go-Mark 100 wax ribbons from Weber now come with a built-in Clean Start leader that automatically cleans your print head as you load each ribbon. It takes care of the dust and dirt while maintaining your printer every time you change ribbons. Simple. And no more missing print or stopping production to do housekeeping chores.

 

 

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Topics: Printer Ribbons, Label Printers, Thermal-Transfer Ribbons, Go-Mark 100 Wax Ribbons


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