Applying Legible Date Codes to Thin Flexible Packaging

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Applying Legible Date Codes to Thin Flexible Packaging

Flexible packaging has become highly popular today for the packaging of foods, dog treats, and many other consumer goods. As this type of packaging becomes thinner in an effort to achieve greater sustainability, many manufacturers find that applying legible date codes and other information is more challenging than ever. Below, we have included some key points to help manufacturers include date codes on packaging that are clearly legible and easy for both consumers and retailers to read. TTO, or thermal transfer overprinting, makes it possible to print easily readable date codes on flexible packaging while reducing the risk of material waste or film perforation. With digital TTO systems, codes can be printed directly onto labels and flexible film packaging using a precision ceramic printhead; no need to use hot stamps, roller printers, or other analog printers which can result in perforation of packaging and undesirable levels of rework and/or waste. Because thermal transfer overprinting is a digital technology, a real-time clock computer chip is contained in the printer, which makes it possible to print lot codes, dates, time, even graphics. When new codes are required, no need to bring production lines to a halt. This type of coding also enhances traceability, an important factor given the increasing number of recalls today. Printing applications vary, as do the ribbons necessary for exceptional coding. At Markem-Imaje, we work closely with clients to determine not only your application needs, but ribbon type as well. Ribbons are not all alike; some are designed to sustain extremely hot temperatures used in hot-fill applications, such as fresh-made soups, while others would not hold up under these conditions. Maximum coding results, in regards to the ribbon used, also depend on factors such as chemical resistance, line speeds, and label/film type. A simple cassette design makes the changeover of TTO ribbons easy and quick. Total cost of ownership and marketing value are important factors when making the best coding decision for your company. Consumers want a clear "purchase by" date, and TTO systems help ensure that consumers and retailers will enjoy legible, clear codes on every package. This helps brands in terms of how consumers think about freshness, and also increases brand trust. For legible codes, protection against counterfeiting, and improved traceability, consider TTO coding for thin flexible packaging. At Markem-Imaje, we provide quality solutions to the very real issues manufacturers face today.

January 10, 2014
Markem-Imaje Announces Acquisition of CSAT

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