Companies rely on engineers or technicians to keep production lines up and running. Because these job functions are essential to hitting production targets, it is critically important that their skill level on equipment is proficient. The amount of time and money that will have to be invested in training production line workers should be a major deciding factor when deciding to replace product identification equipment.
Many manufacturers apply variable information such as lot, batch and expiration dates on their products with continuous inkjet (CIJ) technology for the following reasons:
The Linx 8900 series offered by Diagraph offers an additional benefit: minimal need for line operators to learn new procedures when the units are introduced to the production line.
Linx 8900 Service Features
Traditionally, CIJ printers require the attention of skilled labor to keep printers clean (which is critical to operation) or to tweak print quality at the printhead level. The industry leading Linx 8900 series printers can be operated and maintained with minimal touches due to the following features:
If you are considering replacing existing CIJ equipment and need it to operate with minimal intervention and training, the simple operation and maintenance of the Linx 8900 series printer makes it the right piece of equipment for you.
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by Michelle Chamberlain
Marking and coding products correctly is an essential part of the supply chain. Consumer packaged goods must meet packaging compliance to adhere to global and government regulations and retailer standards for product safety. Managing the printing of product codes remotely - with the right tools and software - not only eliminates waste associated with reduced time and motion along with reduced defects from key stroke errors, but also minimizes physical interaction risk to workers. You can monitor and manage your print production remotely by automating your marking, coding and labeling process. Centralized printer management software like NEXTConnect from Diagraph can help you with this.
Without NEXTConnect, each printer must be updated manually. However, with NEXTConnect software to monitor and manage your printers remotely, the need to physically touch the printers is removed - a huge benefit during Covid-19.
Common challenges manufacturers experience with production in normal circumstances are compounded during a disaster. These include:
4 major attributes of centralized printer management software, like NEXTConnect, that facilitate remote work
Some other benefits of centralized printer management software include:
With the NEXTConnect app, you can manage and monitor print production right from your smartphone, desktop or tablet. NEXTConnect works with iOS, Android and Windows.
Keeping production in essential industries is crucial and minimizing the risks of exposure to Covid-19 is equally important during this challenging time. Using a centralized printer management software suite that will allow you to control the process remotely is a vital tool to stay both safe and productive now and in the future.
Want to know more? Contact us to schedule a demonstration of NEXTConnect.
Learn more about Linx small character continuous inkjet coders.
It is estimated by the US Grocery Manufacturers Association that over half of recalls cost companies over $10M. In addition to the financial implications, recalls for defective products could be harmful to the health of your customers and ultimately damaging to your reputation. These two major factors support the necessity of product identification in the form of date codes, lot codes and batch codes to track and trace in the event of a recall.
Two common automated marking and coding solutions for food packaging are continuous inkjet and laser coding. Which solution best fits your application is dependent on a number of factors. To help you in this evaluation process, we have outlined a few consideration questions:
Continuous Inkjet Considerations
Continuous inkjet (CIJ) can mark onto virtually any substrate type, rounded or flat, ranging from plastic bags, glass jars, metal cans, paper cartons and more. Because of the variety of ink types and colors available, you can achieve a high-contrast mark on nearly any color packaging.
Laser Coding Considerations
Laser, by comparison, creates a permanent mark on most surfaces although not all packaging types will guarantee a high-contrast batch, lot or date code. The etched marks from laser will last, although on clear plastics and glass the coding may not be as easily visible as black ink from CIJ.
Continuous Inkjet & Laser Coding Considerations
Accurate batch, date and expiration codes are essential for customers and retailers alike. If your production lines perform multiple changeovers for different products each shift, this leaves room for errors. Leading CIJ and laser solutions have features for storing unique, variable messages and icon-based interfaces that can be operated without extensive training for message creation and retrieval. Reliable, accurate coding methods will keep your line running in uptime and ensure speedy recall of products in that event.
If your products have high retail value, they may be susceptible to counterfeiting. There are internal tracking and security codes that can be made on a product discreetly, that are only visible under certain circumstances by the manufacturer to verify authenticity and product origin. For CIJ, one option is security UV inks that are nearly invisible until exposed to UV light.
The low-contrast, permanent marks created from laser etching are a benefit in the case of anti-counterfeiting codes. Codes can be applied to packaging in an inconspicuous location without compromising the appeal of the packaging design.
These are only a few considerations to keep in mind when selecting between continuous inkjet and laser coding for your food or beverage packaging line. For more information on how coding ties into food safety and traceability, download our full whitepaper.
Coding for Safety & Traceability in the Food Supply Chain: A Comparison of Continuous Inkjet & Laser Coding
Diagraph Marking & Coding focuses on partnering with customers in every aspect of their coding and labeling operations, including working closely to develop a unique supply strategy that ensures our customers have the appropriate coding and labeling supplies on hand for when they need them. This holistic approach to partnership allows Diagraph to maximize efficiencies for customers and drive tangible value throughout a long-term partnership.
When working with customers to develop a custom supply strategy, we take a close look at the following:
Many of our customers prefer to opt-in to our annual supply strategy service to receive regular deliveries tailored to their production. Supplies are routinely sent at a specified interval utilizing this service and are eligible for special Diagraph Insider Predictability Discounts. Other customers with more seasonality to their business often enjoy a standing order arrangement that allows them to call in a pre-determined order on-demand. Both of these programs have their perks.
Interested in working with Diagraph to keep your marking, coding, and labeling operations running as easily and efficiently as possible? Speak with a Diagraph representative today by calling 1.800.722.1125 or contacting us through the website.