2020 will go down in history as a challenging time for food producers. While it is vital that food supplies to supermarkets are uninterrupted and rigorous hygiene is maintained, we should not forget the importance of the printed information that is provided to the consumer when it is on the shelf. There are heavy fines for batch and date codes that do not meet required legislation, and the printed codes must meet stringent traceability requirements should any recall be needed. What to research How do you go about ensuring you have the best possible coding equipment for the job in hand? As with any purchase, it always pays to do research and you may want to consider the following: Substrate – think of the range of different materials on which you will need to print. It’s a good idea to ask for samples coded by the printer you are considering. Line speed – can the printer keep up with your line speed? If not, what will the degradation be to the code? Also, make sure you future-proof your printer for a potential increase in output. No-one likes to buy twice! Factory environment – this can be tricky for coding onto food products. You need to ensure your printer and ink can cope with greasy environments, plastic film and the cooking process to name but a few. (Check out our ink blog for the latest ink developments at Linx, specifically developed for the food industry). Budget – don’t be swayed to purchase based on the printer price alone. Consider the total cost of ownership and factor in reliability–there is nothing more costly than a breakdown and we all know they never occur at a convenient time. Why Linx is a good choice for the food industry Linx’s continuous inkjet (CIJ) printers, with a minimum IP55 rating to withstand washdown, are an excellent choice for the food industry. They deliver quality coding with exceptional reliability, ease of use and efficient operations. Simple user interfaces with built-in mistake proofing help keep uptime to a maximum. Touch screens are solvent and alcohol resistant so they can be operated while wearing plastic or rubber gloves, and operators can use hand sanitizers to stay healthy and still operate the printer. Linx CIJs are the optimum coders for the harsh environment of food production, and reduce stoppages through: extended service intervals three monthly printhead cleans fluid refills during printing and eight-hour fluid reserve Linx’s extensive experience in the food industry translates into coders that are perfectly suited to challenging environments.