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Water-Activated Glue versus Self-Adhesive Labels


Printed Labels

For some time now we’ve produced solid, waterproof labels; light sticky labels and durable freezer labels. Our range is as extensive as our customers’ ideas. This week we would like to take a closer look at what we intentionally do not include in our assortiment: Water-Activated Labels. What are water-activated labels? What is the difference with self-adhesive labels? Why do we not have it in our collection and which alternative do we offer with an added value?

Not for everyone: Water-Activated labels

Water-activated labels are almost exclusively found on glass products and bottles. These types of labels are applied with the help of labeling machines with a sponge. The glue is activated by water through a damp moistened sponge. As a result, the wet tacky adhesive labels stick on smooth surfaces. However, the adhesion of the moistened glue is delayed. Adhesion is only optimal as soon as the solvents are evaporated.

Although the wet adhesive labels stick well, the process is expensive and labor intensive. Because the correct fiber direction must be taken into account, placing the label is quite error-sensitive. An error can quickly lead to high costs and unusable material. Small businesses, in particular, can not afford the purchase and maintenance costs of such errors. A high quality, yet affordable solution are self-adhesive labels.

Self adhesive labels: Always sticks

Depending on the type of adhesive, self-adhesive labels adhere to (almost) all surfaces. The fields of application are very wide and unlimited by their own creativity. Our labels are etched by lasers and are perfectly suited for further machining. However, users may choose to place the labels on the product without the purchase of a costly labeling machine. This ease of use ensures that adhesive labels are accessible to all: big companies with a pragmatic approach, and as well as growing companies with a limited budget.

The choice is yours

We believe in Zolemba with their versatile power of adhesive labels. The user-friendliness of our products gives our customers the assurance of receiving the perfect result every time!

The purchase cost of a labeling machine for self-adhesive labels are considerably lower, as well as its usability. Especially as a startup entrepreneur, it is often a quickly made choice.

Maarten Nijhof from ‘Rigtersbier’ about Water-Activated Labels

“In our search for a suitable labeling system, we soon came across self-adhesive labels on rolls. As a small brewer, we don’t have the budget to purchase a complete water-activated installation/ labeling machine. We work with batches of maximal 10HL per type. As a result, it is too expensive to pay the startup costs for a printer. Furthermore, we found that paper labels with the wet glue on most bottles of small brewers look often sloppy. Often the labels are either slanted on the bottles or the glue has seeped out onto the exposed bottle. In addition, when a bottle comes out of the fridge, the labels easily release and begin to wrinkle.

The labels we now order at Zolemba are of a type of plastic, aka PP, and does not release away from the bottle, nor what it is wet. In the beginning, we labeled the labels by hand, after 3,000 bottles gets very boring. As a resolution, a semi-automatic label maker from China was bought. The device of not more than $650, makes up to 30 bottles per minute and ensures that the labels are neatly tight and evenly placed on the bottles. Many of our fellow brewers made the transition after seeing our labels in conjunction with the label machine. The flexibility and low start up costs make it  very attractive to the little brewer.”