Published5th January, 2015
Health Aid is one of the UK’s premier manufacturers of nutritional supplements. Its portfolio of more than 500 products are sold in the UK and exported globally. Of these 500 products, 450 are supplied in cartons. All of which are printed with the batch code and expiry date and most with date of manufacture.
“We like to take our time when buying new equipment”
Health Aid first approached PrintSafe in 2007. With the business growing and increasing numbers going through production, it needed to increase coding capacity as well as ensure print quality. General Manager, Anant Patel, says: “We like to take our time when buying new equipment. We looked at the market for the best solution and eventually opted for a carton feeder with continuous inkjet from PrintSafe.”
Seven years later, this system is still going strong. Mr Patel says: “Having the offline coding system in place has meant big cost savings. Just as importantly, the printed code looks good and maintains the quality of our packaging.”
Rapid growth puts pressure on production
In 2014, with sales growing rapidly, Health Aid urgently needed additional capacity. PrintSafe supplied a second offline coding system to handle new product lines as well as a continuous inkjet printer for coding onto bottle caps.
The new offline coding system, an updated version of the system installed in 2007, can code around 50% faster. This time the carton feeder was fitted with a thermal transfer printer. Colin Hogg, PrintSafe Service Manager, said: “Because of the carton shape and the position of the print area we couldn’t use continuous inkjet. Thermal transfer was an ideal alternative. We could mount it on the FORMAXX in the correct orientation and the print quality is excellent. With modern thermal transfer technology, operators can still pre-program the messages and achieve the same levels of throughput and flexibility.”
Online bottle printing
While the majority of Health Aid’s products are cartoned, a number are sold in bottles that also require a code. PrintSafe installed an alphaJET mondo inkjet on Health Aid’s production line to print the codes after the bottles are filled and capped. Coline Hogg says: “The alphaJET mondo is the perfect printer for this kind of application. It prints a reliably clear code. It is simple to operate and very easy to maintain.”
“PrintSafe have always provided an excellent level of service”
Commenting on the relationship with PrintSafe, Mr Patel says: “PrintSafe have always provided an excellent level of service so it was an easy decision to source the extra coding equipment from them. We genuinely appreciate their responsiveness and the support that they have given us as we continue to drive our business forward.”