Adhesive Smart Labels Records Supply Chain Treatment

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Adhesive Smart Labels Records Supply Chain Treatment

May 18
09:22 2013

When it comes to new label technology, thin is definitely in.

By the end of 2014, labels featuring built-in temperature recording aptitudes, that are also as thin as human hair, will transform into a commercial reality, claims a firm based in Norway.

Labels Monitor Supply Chain Treatment

Adhesive “smart labels” that can monitor how products such as fresh produce, which is sensitive to temperature, has been treated during the supply chain will be obtainable for the sector in 2014, says Thin Film Electronics ASA’s director of global sales and business development activities, Jennifer Ernst. This could provide major safeguards for food safety, she said.

The Norway-based firm also has offices in Japan, Sweden and San Francisco. Thin Film’s smart label will be printed using electricity-conductive inks on polymers and can be positioned on packaging, the company’s news release stated. The labels can be fabricated in layers that include batteries, sensors and memory onto a film that is slimmer even than a human hair and thus can easily be applied to packaging.

Recording temperature via the labels placed on packages containing fresh produce would allow much more determined data, compared to a silicon-based temperature/time recorder situated in a truck. Therefore, the label could then be applied to any package type, according to Ernst.

These truck recorders cost somewhere between $11 and $25, so for economical purposes, only a few of these recorders can be placed in a single shipment.

Adhesive ‘Smart Labels’

Thin Film aims to price their labels, incorporated with a capability to sense electronic temperature, at around 50 cents per unit. With increased production, this price could drop down to 30 or even 20 cents, Ernst said.

“We would be looking to adding temperature monitoring at much closer to an object level, the individual case of produce,” said Ernst.

She said it was the customer’s decision whether the label was required on every case of fresh produce.

Thin Film already produces a label with printed memory, and the capability for temperature monitoring will be added by the end of 2014, said Ernst.

She said the label would be marketed on a global scale to fresh produce industries, and the product itself would probably be about the dimensions of a business card.

The labels do not contain any toxic compounds and they are completely disposable.

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