Weber Packaging Solutions, Inc.

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

3 Things We Learned About Craft Beer Packaging at CBC2016

Posted by Margaret O'Leary

May 10, 2016 8:56:38 AM

The Craft Brewers Conference's BrewExpo was an exciting and informative event for Weber. We talked to brewers from all over the world about their craft beer packaging problems. And we learned quite a bit about their challenges as they're just starting out or beginning to grow out of their current processes. The show itself included 10,000 brewers and more than 800 exhibitors.

It's clear that craft beer is a fast-growing industry. While beer overall has been trending down, craft beer has continued to rise nearly 13% last year. This show encompassed not just the major players in craft beer but also the brewery-in-planning people who are just starting out. BrewExpo  gave them a great opportunity to learn about the business and also talk to the experts of everything from brewing equipment to the final packaging details.

So what challenges are craft brewers facing today?

4,400 Brewers in US = Growing Competition for Your Brand

Craft beer is growing at an unprecedented rate and there are now more breweries in the US than ever before. With over 4,400 breweries (and growing!), brewers are facing even more competition for the hearts of beer lovers. As you start to grow your brewery, consider how your final package stands up to the competition on the store shelves.

Getting your beer to sell outside of your taproom or local area is key for your distribution growth. To get customers interested, you have to take the time to tell your brand's story through your craft beer label design. It has to be unique and memorable. The most popular labels in our booth at CBC were the metallic material labels especially ones that had the reflective qualities built into the design. We got a lot of comments about those because the artwork really pops off the label.

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Topics: Labels, Digital Labels, Trade Show, Beer Labeling


Get the highest quality labels with HD Flexo printing

Posted by Margaret O'Leary

Mar 15, 2016 9:13:39 AM

Prime decorative labels play a major role in selling your product. The design, the materials and print quality are reflective of your brand and, as they sit on a crowded store shelf, they are quickly being compared to the competition's packaging. To print the highest quality labels, flexographic label converters are moving to HD Flexo printing to produce the boldest and sharpest label images possible on a flexo press.

When you hear HD quality you're probably thinking high-definition television. Much like high-def TV technology increased the clarity of our TV picture, HD Flexo plates are vastly improving print quality in labels. 

What is HD Flexo?

Using Esko's plate making software, the plate making process essentially creates flexographic printing plates that print at the same quality as gravure and offset printing. You'll get more vibrant colors, stronger solids and smoother vignettes. The labels will print sharper images and text with better definition of the screening dots.

We've see the biggest benefit of this type of printing with cosmetic and health & beauty labels because they usually include human faces which can be difficult to print with flexo plates.  It also makes a big difference in image quality for food designs and other labels that contain detailed artwork.

Let's take a look at the difference between the old flexo process and the new HD system below. Notice the smooth edges on the letters and the rounder and clearer dots on the HD Flexo? 

 Here's an example of the difference you'll see with artwork that shows faces. 

 

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Topics: Labels


A New Way to Purchase Blank Labels Online

Posted by Margaret O'Leary

May 7, 2015 9:00:00 AM

When we need information about a product we want to purchase, most of us instinctively reach for Google and do a quick search on our computer, or more often, our smart phone or tablet. Google serves up more results than any other search engine and companies need to be found in searches to be successful.

Recently Google put a lot of websites in a bit of a panic when they announced that they were changing their search algorithms, that mathematical formula they use to decide which sites are more relevant to your search and are then served up in your results. Google uses these to decide whether your company shows up on page 1 or page 100.

The new algorithms measure a web site's mobile responsiveness or how it is viewed on a mobile device.  If it meets the new guidelines, it will be ranked higher and be found sooner. If not, you probably move down.  Basically, if your site didn't adjust for mobile it could be harder for customers to find your business online.

The trend towards mobile browsing and shopping has been on the rise for years now and recently has reached a point where you can't ignore it. Today more people use search engines on their mobile devies than they do on PCs. We wanted to share this information with you because a lot of our label customers are small businesses with eCommerce websites and it's something we're experiencing first hand. 

Almost exactly five years ago we started our eCommerce site, Go-Label.com, to sell our stock blank labels, printers and other labeling accessories. This gave our customers a way to order labels right when they needed them, and with a credit card which sped up the transaction. At the time Weber was just excited to give people the option to purchase labels online, but now we're finding more and more of our visitors are using mobile devices to browse the Go-Label site. People are making better use of their time by doing their product research while on public transportation or getting quick answers while in a meeting by jumping online.

And now we're responding to the way they want to shop and the way they now browse by launching a more responsive, mobile-friendly Go-Label.com

Be sure to take a look at our newly redesigned site! It changes it's design depending on the device or type of computer you are using.

And to celebrate our fifth birthday and the launch of this new site, we're have a special offer. Use the code newsite10 to get 10% off your next labeling supplies order. Go-Label has great products, it's easy to use, and it has the best prices for hundreds of items. Use the promo code to buy labels, printers or accessories now through May 31st 2015.

 

 

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Topics: Labels


6 Ways to Make Your Juice Label Stick Out

Posted by Margaret O'Leary

Jul 24, 2014 11:08:00 AM

 

If you enjoy fresh juice like I do, then you've probably noticed a lot more options lately. From the crowded shelves at Whole Foods to the new juice bars popping up around town there seem to be new companies with new flavors every day.

The local juice bars are starting to venture into bottling and distribution while established brands are growing beyond their regional Whole Foods locations and becoming available nationally. As the competition grows between juice brands, the question asked is how do you make your product stand above the others? We thought you'd be interested in a few ways to make your juice label stick out in the crowd.

Here are 6 tips for juice labels and packaging.

 

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Topics: Labels, Digital Labels


Why does an unwind direction matter when ordering labels?

Posted by Margaret O'Leary

Jul 3, 2014 8:44:55 AM

It's time to order a batch of labels for my new product. I need to get this label order right the first time so production goes smoothly. What information does my label printer need from me?

There are a lot of specs you need to give to your printing company when it's time to order new pressure-sensitive labels. These usually include:

  • Label material
  • Label adhesive
  • Final label size
  • Number of colors
  • Special label features (like booklet, coupon, extended text, etc.)
  • And the Unwind direction

What is the unwind direction?

The unwind direction is the orientation of the label as it will feed out of a label printer or label applicator. There are eight different directions you could choose from for your unwind direction. Depending on whether you are applying them by hand or using automated machinery, this can be a critical factor.

 

Why it matters

If your labels are to be fed out of a label printer or label applicator, then it is very likely that the label orientation is critical to the application. If you don't pick the correct unwind direction, you risk printing your barcode or other variable data in the wrong spot or even over your artwork. Selecting the correct direction also means you won't need to adjust your applicator because the labels are applying upside down!

 

Check out this handy guide to the various rewind directions.

Next time you are near your labeling operation, see if you can use this chart to figure out your current label orientation. Maybe you need to adjust it on your next order to improve labeling efficiency?

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Topics: Labels


What is a pressure-sensitive label?

Posted by Margaret O'Leary

May 27, 2014 9:45:00 AM

What is a pressure sensitive label? Are they stickers, product identifiers, decals or a component of decorative packaging? Yes!  Pressure-sensitive labels are used everywhere from toys, food bottles, medical devices, and corrugated boxes, to plastic pouches and so much more.

But what are they?

Let's break it down...

A pressure-sensitive label, or self-adhesive label, is made up of three layers: a face stock, an adhesive and a release liner. We refer to this as the "label sandwich." When a label is manufactured, these three components are sandwiched together to create a label material that can be printed on, laminated, die-cut, and finally peeled off and applied to your product.

Facestock

The facestock is the main part of the label. The material could be paper, film, or metallic foil. This is the layer where the ink is applied on press. For specific applications, a topcoat or laminate may be applied to protect the label artwork or enhance certain areas of the design.

Adhesive

The adhesive is what makes the label stick to the surface of the product or packaging. For glue-applied (cut & stack) labels, this process happens as the label is being applied. A pressure-sensitive label is manufactured to have the adhesive already applied to the face stock when you receive your roll or sheet of labels.

The adhesive type will depend on your application and environment in which the label will be used. Many different types of adhesive are available including versions that stick under cold and wet conditions, some that release easily, some that stick permanently and others that are resealable.

For example, a label that is applied to a durable good, like an air conditioner, will require an adhesive that sticks to metal in an outdoor environment and can last for years. If the label is only going to be used once, say for a shipping carton label, a strong adhesive isn't necessary. You might even select an adhesive that is re-positionable for a peel and redeem coupon.

Liner

The liner is the paper or film that makes up the backing web material. There are options that range from semi-bleached paper or craft paper, to a stronger clear film liner. The liner is coated with a special material that makes it possible to remove the label no matter how strong the adhesive you select.

And there you have it - our label sandwich explained!

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Topics: Labels