In-Line, Pressure Sensitive Labeling
We use a Meheen bottling machine feeding an In-Line 1000 labeling machine to place pressure sensitive labels on just filled cold, wet bottles of beer. I have experienced everything from 100% adhesion to less than 25% adhesion. I would like to talk to anyone with a similar setup. Chuck Haines. 757 254 2654
PS labels and cold, wet bottles have never been very compatible. I did some work on the problem and you might want to get your label supplier to get you some samples done with freezer adhesive. I have seen it work well but not all versions are the same.
If your labeling on the out-feed your gonna have to get the bottles rinsed and dried before they hit the labler. Ive seen setups as simple as pvc pipe, with slits to produce a spray, hooked to a pump and reservoir (with sani) and then AG style live stock dryer/blower positioned just after to remove water. The other option is to label before you fill, but your labels have to be able to handle getting wet. Either way I would be rinsing and drying the over-foam off of the bottles. The only way to consistently apply labels on wet bottles is in a glue-applied label machine setup.
Thanks for the input. I have freezer coming.
Originally Posted by Rob Creighton
We have been using pressure sensitive labels post-fill since 1999. We have had successful label glue from three different companies, so I think your current provider either has the appropriate adhesive or can get it. We have a Meheen bottling line and the In-Line labeler as well so I know it can work. We have the stock rinser on the filler and do not use a dryer - it's a matter of having the right adhesive. Keep asking for samples until you find the one that works.
What temperature is your beer at bottling?
Originally Posted by Lake Superior B
If we come from a uni-tank the beer is around 30 degrees. If we come from the single-wall tanks in the cold room it can run up to 38 degrees (a bit high but we will add more cooling by summer). We had some difficulties this summer/fall with label adhesion on a very frustratingly irregular basis. Our label provider (Orion) did the research and determined that our (and others) problems stemmed from the bottles being very fresh from the manufacturer. The coating that allows the bottle to release from the mold is designed to dissipate but if it comes right from the manufacturer to the labeler the release coating will inhibit label adhesion.
This explanation made sense to me why the same roll of labels wouldn't stick at all one day but stick fine a week later or why it varied from pallet to pallet. Our labels had always been bullet proof up until this late summer/fall so it was very puzzling why they were so erratic. Our space is limited but we will try to have a few extra pallets in stock to act as a buffer for a new shipment. We will also pay attention to the date on the pallet when we get in to a new shipment.
I appreciated Orion's diligence in researching and finding a probable cause. Thanks also to the other brewer's who keep records of their shipments.