For decades, traceable product markings have been an integral part of countless industries ranging from beer production to pharmaceutical development.
Food producers, for example, rely on product marking to ensure that their products are accounted for during transit and to trace problem products when performing recalls. Similarly, aerospace manufacturers use traceable markings for quality-assurance purposes and to ensure that the parts they’re using meet industry standards. In a more general sense, retailers across the country commonly require that all manufacturers of perishable products outfit their goods with expiration dates to communicate when a product’s shelf life is nearing an end.
Given these important functions that these markings play, numerous distribution networks, government authorities, and influential industry bodies maintain guidelines on how to properly label products for sale. If these standards are not met, companies can be faced with fines, recalls, negated contracts, and other expensive penalties. Fortunately, it isn’t hard to comply with labeling standards regulations with the aid of inkjet coding technology.
Capable of fulfilling the coding needs of both industrial-sized operations as well as upstart companies, inkjet printers come in a variety of makes and models to help users outfit products with required information like:
- Expiration dates
- Serial numbers
- Lot codes
- Data matrices
Diverse compatibility, affordability, and reliability are the top benefits of inkjet printers if you’re looking to get into inkjet coding for your operation’s needs.
Diverse Application Compatibility
One of the reasons that inkjet printers are popular in so many industries is that they can mark a wide range of materials and packaging shapes.
The diverse material compatibility stems from how continuous inkjet printers and many thermal inkjet printers can utilize both water-based and solvent-based ink formulas when marking packages. All packaging materials have their own unique surface properties that affect how well specific ink formulas will adhere to them. Accordingly, it is safe to assume one cannot use the same ink to mark both a porous material (e.g., cardboard) and a non-porous material (e.g., glass), as it can lead to issues like ink bleeding and unreadable codes.
Fortunately, the latest CIJ and TIJ printers are compatible with a large amount of water-based and solvent-based ink formulas, enabling them to mark a variety of substrates with sharp, highly-readable product codes. Compatible materials include:
- Rigid plastic
- Flexible plastic packaging and film
In addition to wide substrate compatibility, both CIJ and TIJ printers can print on a variety of surface types thanks to their non-contact printing methods. With their non-contact printheads, inkjet printers can print on curved surfaces (e.g., cans and bottles) as well as flat planes, making them capable of meeting all kinds of printing needs.
All coding technologies require a degree of capital investment and ongoing expenses. For example, laser marking systems can cost tens of thousands of dollars upfront and thermal transfer overprinters require users to replenish their often expensive ribbons on a regular basis.
In this context, inkjet technology offers numerous cost-effective options that fit the needs of differently sized operations. CIJ models, like the DuraCode Touchscreen, offer high-speed capabilities akin to a laser system but are available at a fraction of the cost. This allows users to acquire an industrial coding solution without breaking their budget.
Similarly, affordable TIJ models like Anser Pro-S are available for under $2,000. Although these printers can’t match the coding speed of a CIJ printer or a higher-end TIJ like the industrial speed Anser X1, they are a great fit for non-porous substrates and primary packing printing.
Reliability When You Need It Most
Well-made inkjet printers, whether they’re CIJ, TIJ, or high-resolution case coding models, are known for creating codes with consistent quality. As any line operator knows, consistent quality is a must when performing product coding because these codes must be applied with accuracy to comply with regulations and keep production moving along smoothly.
With the aid of consistent code quality, companies can perform all date coding and variable data printing in-house to reduce physical labeling needs. Additionally, in-house coding aids just-in-time production by allowing companies to perform required coding applications themselves rather than have to wait for preprinted labels to arrive. Accordingly, companies can both gain more control over the manufacturing process and improve operational efficiency.
Need an Inkjet Printer for Your Business? InkJet, Inc. Has You Covered
When it comes to industrial coding, markings solutions don’t come much more versatile than inkjet printers. From high-speed CIJ machines to portable TIJ units, the world of inkjet printing is diverse enough to offer a solution for nearly any application, and here at InkJet, Inc., we help companies of all sizes and industries find the perfect solution to fit their needs.
Staffed by a team of coding and marking experts, InkJet, Inc. has been developing ink formulas and selling inkjet printer solutions for over 40 years. With our industry experience and diverse product selection, we can help you improve your coding process for higher overall efficiency. Contact us today to learn more.
To find an inkjet coding machine for your operation, contact us online today or call 1(800) 280-3245.