Attractive packaging and labeling are marketing techniques used to sell products to the target buyer. Labels on a product provide all the decision-making information about the contents, the ingredients used, their weight percentage, regulatory declarations, and other mandates. Specialized automated machines called label applicators glue pressure-sensitive labels on all surface types and products like bottles, pipes, and more. These have replaced manual applicators mainly for bulk orders and in industries such as F&B. The market for labels has been growing steadily in recent years. The market value for labels was $1.79 billion in 2019 and will grow to a market size of $2.38 billion by 2027.
But changes are happening in the label applicator markets. Most manufacturers and packaging industry giants are sensitive to the changing perceptions of consumers. The cry for sustainable packaging has been long-drawn, and the impact of this has been the increasing demand for green labeling products. And label machine manufacturers have been responding to this demand. The producers of label applicators have already introduced a new labeling head which is modular in structure. It enables the manufacturers to replace the labeling head with an upgraded label applicator. Secondly, the applicator works at a very high speed due to the enabling technology and its faster performance and capabilities.
Why is green labeling important?
Green labeling practices are a subtle communication to consumers and buyers that the manufacturer has followed environment-friendly production practices and that the packaging can be disposed of sustainably. Most countries have various regulations that mandate sustainable production practices. Manufacturers need to indicate the energy efficiency of their electronic appliances and vehicles in North America, while European manufacturers have to prove the energy efficiency of electrical appliances. Addressing all of these needs are automatic labeling machines. Label applicators are becoming popular as they meet the needs of online retailers.
Another key contributor to the development of the green labeling trend is the availability of high-quality materials for labels. The launch of new adhesive materials is changing the ways in which label applicators are in use. Some adhesive solutions are freezer adhesives, peeling adhesives/ removable adhesives. The food and beverages industry uses freezer adhesives. Since these labels can tolerate extreme cold, these adhesives are ideal for labeling frozen foods. Besides, the labels are easy to remove at higher temperatures.
Labels that use peeling adhesives last a long time. But if the user intentionally wants to remove the label, the address peels away easily and does not damage the surface. Hence both of these adhesive solutions are proving to be extremely effective in practicing green labeling processes. They are easy to remove ensuring that consumers have the option to recycle sustainably.
Automatic label applicators for efficiency
Automatic label applicator machines meet the requirements of sustainable labeling solutions with novel adhesives. These types of label applicators can be categorized into shrink sleeves, self-adhesive, or pressure-sensitive types. The third is the glue-based variety. Another categorization method of the automatic label applicators is - configuration. This applicator machine can be a stand-alone, independent labeling solution or manufacturers can integrate it with the process and ease the assembly-line production. The third categorization method is by the industry - label applicators are popularly used in the food and beverages industry. Labels play a very critical role in the healthcare industry since pharmaceuticals have to carry the necessary labeling. Labels are important for consumer goods and automotive industries since they are required by the law to carry such information. Hence, label applicators are highly-valued productivity multiplying machines. Most industries use semiautomatic, or fully automatic label applicators depending on the products they manufacture.