The Label Makers profit from Durst Tau RSC platform

Platform powered by Durst Workflow Label software

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Durst
Recently Labmak won two major awards for a complicated illustrated label embellished and printed on to bottles of spiced and dark rum for Manchester-based brand Diablesse

Multi-award-winning company The Label Makers has expanded to higher-end markets and turned a major food brand prospect into one of its biggest accounts, thanks to the Durst Tau RSC platform and software capabilities.

“It’s unbelievable photographic quality,” said David Webster, managing director at the company known as Labmak. “The print quality meant that we could look for more sophisticated work, particularly as we found it far easier to hit everybody’s brand color. As one example, we were approached by a prospective customer who asked if we could reproduce its fluorescent green logo. Thanks to the fantastic quality from the RSC green ink, we were able to do this and won the new contract. Now that food brand is now one of the biggest customers.”

Recently Labmak won two major awards for a complicated illustrated label embellished and printed on to bottles of spiced and dark rum for Manchester-based brand Diablesse. One was for ‘Label of The Year’ at the UK Packaging Awards and the other was the ‘Special Effect in Labels and Packaging’ in the Digital Printer Awards. “The depth and vibrancy of the inks printed on the Durst Tau 330 RSC were crucial and I can’t think we’d have ever won without it,” said Webster. “Who would ever have thought we’d be printing rum labels digitally. What more can I say!

“Customer requirements are now changing constantly. In this market label delivery dates now typically get changed hourly, not even on a daily basis, so we have to have the flexibility of printing on either machine or even transferring work from flexo. Durst Workflow Label software enables us to manipulate files press side, so jobs can be tweaked immediately by press operators without sending the file back to the studio, which could easily take up to 20 minutes. Any changes are now done in five minutes – it’s a major time-saver. And it’s a gamechanger.”

Labmak, a family-owned company, was formed in 1963. Starting with letterpress, it moved into litho and flexo printing – and now increasingly uses digital. It has a reputation as a pioneer and supplies some of the UK’s leading brands covering markets such as food, beverages, personal care, petrochemical, and decorative coatings. “Whereas a decade ago, we would be running jobs regularly of 100,000 labels a time, customers started making increasing numbers of order but in smaller batches, perhaps 10,000 labels a time,” said Webster.

Labmark – beta testing site for Durst RSC platform

Labmak became the beta test site for the Durst RSC platform three years ago, working in partnership with Durst. It currently has two Durst Tau 330 RSC single-pass UV inkjet presses, with industrial-scale production possible at up to 80 linear meters/min.

“The future of label printing is here – and it’s digital inkjet production,” said Webster. “We now have supermarket chains requesting that the jobs be printed inkjet rather than flexo because of the vibrancy of the colors, the screen effect of the inks, and the perfect print registration. Our Tau RSC investments give us the opportunity to take on more clients and better serve our existing customers. Previously we were mainly using the Durst Tau presses for the personal care markets. Now, with the new capabilities, we are producing everything from food labels through to high-quality wines and spirits.”

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The capacity for flexible film manufacturing in India increased by 45% over the past four years. With orders in place, we expect another 20% capacity addition in 2024 and 2025. Capacities in monocartons, corrugation, aseptic liquid packaging, and labels are grown similarly. As the consumption story returns over the next six months, we expect demand to return and exceed the growth trajectory of previous years. The numbers are positive for most of the economies in the region – and as shown by our analytics, our platform increasingly reaches and influences these.

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– Naresh Khanna (25 October 2023)

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