Case Study: Pack Ready for Labels Solution Improves Scuff-Resistance

Phenix Label in Olathe, Kan., has been printing labels for tubs of The Curse! Pre-workout supplement for a few years, and chose digital printing for the job. The team at Phenix, who have been in business since 1896, has printed digitally for 10 years using HP Indigo for all of its benefits, including easier printing for shorter runs, multiple SKUs, and when they need a quick turnaround for projects like The Curse.

A common problem for label producers arises when, once applied, the labels are exposed to extreme heat, chemicals, water, or friction during packing and transport. Phenix’s copacker noticed some scuffing with the finished tubs on the production line. That set Todd Fatino, VP of Innovation at Phenix, on the hunt for a more durable finish to protect the indigo inks.

“We tried several iterations of primers and varnishes and coatings … we saw some minor improvements, but not major,” Fatino says. “We continued to look for ways to improve the product, and I asked Andrew Kalina at S-OneLP if there were any new products that would enhance the label performance.”

That’s when the Phenix team discovered the preferred solution for HP Pack Ready for Labels, which includes Michelman DigiGuard 901 OPV Strengthener mixed with S-OneLP KustomLP 405 Matte OPV.

“The process was very straight forward and worked great for us,” Fatino says. “I think it’s important to note that every day the performance [of the label durability] improved. At 48 hours we saw better resistance than at 24 hours. And at 72 hours, we saw better performance than at 48.”

Fatino says the team also used the Sutherland rub test and tape tests to ensure the quality of the finish.

“The matte varnish with the 901 has improved the durability of the label from scuffing and now meets the customers' expectation,” he says. “We now have had two successful production runs.”

To see how easy it is to use Michelman DigiGuard 901 and KustomLP 405, check out the video below.