(Editor’s Note: This is an online-only article attributed to the August/September 2018 issue.)
Get Paid For Your Thoughts!
- Wiley (Food Quality & Safety’s publisher) is offering $200 to qualified food scientists who participate in research interviews about challenges facing the food industry.
Take the survey >
While they may be among the last considerations in a liquid filling line, labeling machines are also one of the most important. If one of your goals as a business is to appeal to your audience with high-quality labels featuring original logos, graphics, and text, a labeler is crucial for your production line. In many cases, liquid products will need unique packaging and labeling designs to stand out on the shelves and attract consumers.
Benefits of Installing Labeling Equipment
There are several benefits that a packaging line will experience with high-quality labeling machines. One of these is increased efficiency, since today’s labeling equipment is designed to print complex graphics and text at a faster rate and with better quality than older models. The demands of a high-speed bulk production line can be easily met with the use of one or more labelers.
Money can also be saved through labeling machines combined with cost-effective printing materials. With the right labeling machine from the right manufacturer and seller, frequent repairs and breakdowns can be avoided that might be experienced with low-quality labeling systems. Many of today’s labelers also can print on a variety of materials, including paper and mylar, helping determine which material is best to maintain both quality and affordability.
Automation of production lines is another benefit of using labelers, in addition to automatic liquid fillers, conveyors, and other packaging equipment that can keep processes moving along at the most productive rate.
Types of Labeling Systems
There are several types of labelers available for production lines based on their specific needs.
Horizontal wrap labelers. These are typically utilized for labeling unstable round containers such as vials with rounded bottoms. Items are placed on a horizontal roller, which then runs them through a wrap station.
Vertical wrap labelers. Vertical labelers are normally used for a variety of bottles, including slightly tapered bottles and stable square or rectangular bottles that won’t easily trip during transfers.Partial and full labels are available for these labeling machines. It’s among the most popular options.
Front and back labelers. Use these labelers to place labels on one or two sides, or in some cases with some modification, three sides of either oval, flat, round, or rectangular bottles. However, like vertical wrap labelers, bottles need to be stable enough to avoid tripping while being transported on conveyors.
Top labelers. This type of labeler is suitable for a variety of applications, including everything from electronics to edibles. It works by placing a panel or spot label on the top of a product that passes, such as a wide round jar lid.
Top and bottom labelers. These are used to label flat containers that require both a top and bottom label, such as a tray with a UPC label on the bottom and a product label on the top.
Print and apply labelers. Configurations for these may be used for a variety of containers including bottles, cartons, and cases.
Custom labeling equipment. In some cases, companies may be able to create a custom configuration for a labeler if needs aren’t compatible with standard labelers.
How to Select the Right Labeler
When trying to find the best filler to install in the filling line, it’s important to consider the different factors that go into a purchase.
Sizes and shapes. One of the first things to consider is the size and shape of the containers and the corresponding parameters of the label, which help determine which type of labeler can meet these criteria. While some labelers may be more versatile and accommodate for a variety of widths, lengths, and shapes, others may only be suitable for handling specific sizes and shapes.