Self adhesive labels are manufactured in a wide array of formats and are used in an equally wide array of environments. Labels are often required to withstand a range of environmental conditions such as deep freeze (-50c) for some food labels, water submersion for maritime applications, scuffing from harsh environments like building material labelling, or heat from cooking or testing applications. Some labels are designed for aesthetic appeal, especially for high value goods or bottles of wines. A large amount of wine is reported to be bought by the label and for this reason wine makers are placing more importance on the aesthetic value of the labels on their bottles..
Others are designed for their functionality and are produced to convey important information like serialised numbers, tracking numbers and barcodes. There are also a wide range of security labels used to protect packaging, for brand protection and verification, or to protect environmental situations such as confirming aircraft doors are sealed, container doors for distribution.
There are many considerations when specifying the materials to be used in constructing a label such as adhesive type, face material type, backing or carrier type, finished form such as on roll, on sheets, in fan-folded packs. Permanent adhesives are used when the label is required to stay with the product it’s stuck to. Removal often requires use of a solvent or similar and generally will involve damaging the label in the process of removing it. Likewise there are extra fragile materials available designed specifically to fracture if removal is attempted. These are often seen used for high value asset protection where an issuing body wants to identify, protect and monitor its assets.
Some adhesives are re-positionable, and by their description they are designed to be removable for the first moments that come in to contact with a surface. Once they have been applied for a short while they begin to bond more permanently, until they eventually lose all of their removable properties.
Some applications call for a label that can be cleanly removed from a surface without leaving any residue or damage in the process and these are called removable adhesives. These are often used on clothing, packaging such as CD Jewel cases, or for applications where the end user may want to retain the label from the packaging and stick it in to a personal record or filing system. These adhesives generally have a removable life term though and can become permanently adhered after a couple of years.
Deep freeze adhesives are commonly used for labelling food and meat that are to be stored in deep freeze conditions (-50c). These are special adhesives and bond well to plastics particularly.
Label substrates, or face materials as they are also known are typically made of paper, polypropylene, polyester, polyethylene, BOPP (Biaxially orientated polypropylene). Other substrates are available for special applications and can be made to include certain security features such as micro particles for special reader verification, watermarks, fine threads and foils for aesthetic or security value.
Labels are often presented in rolls on cardboard cores and are suitable for hand or machine application. Labels can also be supplied in sheets for overprinting on laser and inkjet printers, or in fan-folded packs for special loaders on some industrial over printers.
For further advice and guidance about label printing, visit http://www.label-makers.com.au Australia’s experts in all things labels and tags.