Date coding using a Continuous Inkjet Printer is the industry standard. It's the dot-matrix style date/batch coding that you see on pretty much every mass produced bottle in the UK.
The text you see here is applied using the type of machine you see to the right. As the bottles move down a conveyor belt the silver wand sprays mico-fine ink on to the bottle which instantly dries due to the solvent used.
This process can be used to put the bar-code pretty much anywhere on the bottle, or cap/shrink capsule etc as long as the face is visible to the coder-wand.
Here's our problem - these machines are scarily expensive for a small producer - you won't get much change out of £5,000 plus lots of consumable costs (ink/solvent) and ongoing maintenance.
Most of our customers have the dates pre-printed on to the labels by their label suppliers (talk to us about this), but for customers that DO wish to date code (due to purchasing labels in bulk to take advantage of heavy discounts), using the CIJ coder we can offer this option!
We have teamed up with a company based out of Winchester who will rent the machine to us for a cost of £300 per week. No Vat is added. They can also code directly on to the caps at a cost of £84.00 per thousand with a decreasing cost based on a sliding scale. The costs are passed on to you directly with no mark-up. If we can get more than one customer using the system in any week then we can share the costs across those customers.
We can run very small runs (from a single label) of full digitally printed, full CMYK processed labels. They must be a single patch or wraparound label and must be either automaticallt applied wet glue, or self-adhesive hand-applied. Design work can be made