The industry offers effective options to solve these problems such as self-adhesive labels.
There is nothing in the world that cannot be forged. Anything with high sales value, high demand and high perceived brand value is exposed to counterfeiting. Especially if the possibility, due to its production characteristics, makes it easier.
A quick look will reveal multiple markets at risk of counterfeiting, including pharmaceuticals, alcoholic beverages, watches, cigarettes and wines. However, the industry has created techniques that can be applied to prevent counterfeit products from being sold with products that have nothing to do with the original.
Packaging offers effective anti-counterfeiting options through self-adhesive labels, especially for products offered in bottles.
Alternatives for self-adhesive labels can be analyzed based on different combinations of materials or substrates used and printing systems; or from the goal they aim for: anti-infringement (obviously tampered) or anti-counterfeit labels.
The materials that can be used to avoid counterfeiting are different:
• Waterline papers, luminescent fibers, anti-rape chemicals
• Ultra-fragile materials (eggshell type) that burst when you try to remove the sticker
• Materials with strong adhesive and safety cuts, which break when trying to remove the sticker
• Materials with hidden messages (type of gap)
These materials can easily be found on the market, which compromises safety. Therefore, it is necessary to combine them with printing systems that, in addition to greater security, will also give the labels an original design that will distinguish the product from its imitations.
There are various options for printing security labels. These include the software used for the design, the printing system used and different alternatives to existing inks or varnishes.
The most prominent alternatives are thermochromic inks that change color depending on the exposure temperature, some reversibly and others irreversibly. It is possible to determine the turning temperature. Also striking is the work of biocodes, which are inks that react with a certain external chemical agent, changing color. In this way, the reagent acts like a lock that can only be opened with a key.
For its part, digital technology makes it possible to print texts or codes that are impossible to reproduce, both due to the size of the print and the use of colors in combination with variable data with sophisticated algorithms.
The options offered by the market to avoid counterfeit products vary depending on the needs of the individual. The options are increasingly complex and effective, although in many cases the consumer cannot detect this with the naked eye.
Knowing the premise of the inevitability of counterfeits – and the ingenuity applied by counterfeiters – the challenge is to continuously research to make these types of techniques more widely available so that consumers can also guarantee the quality of their purchase.
A- Used substrates
– Waterline papers, luminescent fibers, anti-rape chemicals (R).
– Ultradestructible materials (A).
– Materials with strong adhesive and safety cuts (A).
– Materials with a hidden message (invalid or otherwise) standard (A) or customized (R).
– Design with hidden graphics (invisible to the naked eye).
– Thermochromic inks (A).
– Varnish UV (A)
– Invisible inks (R).
– Biocodes (R).
– Hologram application
– Standard (A).
– Custom (R).
– Digital technology
– Microtexts (special numbering) (R).
– Microcodes (R).
– Color markings (R).
Sources of supply -restriction of use, distributors, etc.-
– Wide (A)
– Restricted (R)
Thermochromic inks are those that change color depending on the exposure temperature. There are those that vary reversibly and others that do so irreversibly. It is possible to determine the turning temperature.
Biocodes: Some inks contain elements that react with a certain external chemical agent and when both are in contact, a color change occurs. This reaction only occurs when meeting a certain reagent, which is why it acts like a lock that can only be opened with a key.
Digital technology today enables the printing of texts or codes that are impossible to reproduce with other printing systems, both due to the size of the print and the use of colors in combination with the use of variable data with sophisticated algorithms.
A combination of materials and printing systems
How do you know which alternative is suitable? The choice will depend not only on the cost of each alternative, but also on who or who conducts the verification.
The more hidden the security element, the more difficult it will be to counterfeit. But it will also be more difficult for the consumer to verify the authenticity of the product with the naked eye.
Conversely, the more visible security elements are, the easier they will be to check, but the possibility of counterfeiting will also increase.