In earlier years, small manufacturers used a rubber stamp, ticket price gun, hot foil coding, contract packer or preordered their labels with information pre-printed onto the labels such as ‘used by dates’ and ‘batch numbers’.
Today, food and regulatory bodies are restricting the way coding products are done to prevent fraud and maintain a higher standard of information and safety provided to the consumer. There are two ways that Packserv promote this task, Print-Apply and Ink Jet Coding.
Date stamping, batch numbering or coding of any nature can be achieved through several methods depending on the product, information required to print and the containers.
The Print Apply solution involves a printer connected to a labeller and is used for low scale/small manufacturers aiming to achieve the same effect as an automated process.
The other more automated technology is Ink Jet Coding, which is used with large volume manufacturing and involves inputting the data into the coder using a computer interface through touch screen pad and shooting the information at the container while in motion. Information such as date, time, batch, barcodes and julian dating are a few variable data forms.
Packserv observe that if users choose the Print-Apply solution, then they should inform their label manufacturers that they will do a thermal transfer print as some protective coatings might prohibit marking the label.