A linerless label is basically a (pre-printed) Pressure Sensitive label. Before being processed, these labels are equipped with an adhesive layer and a liner so they don’t stick to each other on the roll. The underside of the label is made up of the liner. This is the sheet that forms the underside of the label and ensures that the self-adhesive label does not stick to the other labels. The topside of this liner has a release coating that ensures that the adhesive layer on the basic material does not remain stuck to the liner. On the release coating is the label. This comprises a basic material of paper or foil equipped on the underside with a self-adhesive layer of glue and on the topside with a top coating that serves as either protection or decoration. A linerless label has the same properties as a Pressure Sensitive label, but the release coating and the liner are eliminated. This saves on material and space, as can be seen in the overview below.
What are the sustainability benefits of the linerless label?
Worldwide nearly 52 billion m2 of label material are used every year. Roughly 30% of these labels are used in Europe. This amounts to 15 billion m2 of label material. In the label market, there are five distinct categories of label, namely pressure sensitive labels, sleeves, glue applied labels and in-mold labels. Linerless labels fall under the category Pressure Sensitive labels, and this category makes up 40% of all labels. This amounts to 7 billion m2 pressure sensitive labels per year in Europe. And that means 7 billion m2 pointless liner (waste) material that is disposed of every year. What’s more, the label chain is a fairly complex chain with many intermediate links. And there are countless hours of transport between these links from basic material to waste processing. The chain for linerless labels is half the length of the traditional label chain which means major reductions in gas emissions.
What are the product-specific benefits of the linerless label?
Linerless labels are pre-perforated at production as they are produced together on a roll. If the labels are unprinted or have a continual print, this means that each label could have a unique length. The length of the label is modified to the information to be printed. This results in a reduction in the materials used, but also in fewer different labels that have to be held in stock. And because the rolls contain 40% more labels storing labels is much more efficient.Further due to the absence of a liner, the roll requires changing 40% less of the time. This results in a more efficient process.
What are the financial benefits of the linerless label?
To produce linerless material, the label printer must invest in coating equipment. The processor of linerless labels must also invest in applicator technology to apply the linerless labels. Nevertheless, at the right volumes, linerless labels are also a very financially attractive proposition. The printer saves on liner that is no longer required and on paper that would normally be cut away at the punching stage. However, he then has to apply silicones and hotmelt. In practice this results in a cost reduction of up to 15%. But to that you can add the lower costs of storage and logistics, too.
What are the limitations of linerless labels?
Beyond the many benefits of linerless labels, there is actually only one real limitation. And that is freedom of form. Because the labels are joined together on the rolls, there is only a limited potential to create other shapes. Various parties are currently trying to design techniques for creating linerless form labels. But we strongly suspect that creating form linerless labels will actually negatively impact the major benefit of linerless label – variable label height.
How do I apply linerless labels to my product?
To process linerless labels, your current applicator must be modified or you need to invest in a new applicator. There are now tested applicators for various applications available on the market. For industrial, print & apply, scales and portable applications.