Century Label Earns Recognition from PEAK Awards

The Print Services and Distribution Association (PSDA) announced that Century Label’s cold foil label for Strongman Whey Protein has been named as an Honorable Mention in the 2017 PEAK Awards competition, marking the fourth consecutive year that Century has been recognized by the awards.

This was Century Label’s first label to employ the cold foil technique, wherein the foil is pressed through a nip roller onto the substrate where a UV-curable adhesive has been printed and the product is exposed to UV light. The metallic foil, along with the bold red and black colors, gives the label a powerful, striking look.   

The pressure-sensitive label, which fits a 34.9 oz. container, was also created using HD Flexo printing, four-color process, and approximately 30,000 ft. of material (60,000 labels).

PSDA’s PEAK Awards, held in partnership with the Print Education & Research Foundation (PERF), recognize excellence in the print industry, promoting projects that display innovation, excellent quality, and produce high return on investment. Since 1995, the program has awarded teams that make bold decisions, connect with customers in new ways and deliver benefits to end users.

Century Label Wins Pewter Awards In the Annual Gold Ink Awards Competition

Both winning shrink sleeves were printed using the HP Indigo 8000.

Printing Impressions, the publication that produces the annual Gold Ink Awards, announced that Century Label has won two Pewter Awards in the Digital Printing, Labels & Packaging category. Both winning entries were shrink sleeves for craft beer cans.

The shrink sleeve for Great North Aleworks Tie Dyed pale ale is an eye catching piece that contrasts a variety of colors with a stark white. The sleeves accommodate the customer's intricate white plating without registration issues, and a frosted look on the clear areas was created using the HP Indigo varnish.

Sun King Brewing created The Eighteenth Sun imperial wheat IPA in collaboration with 18th Street Brewery for the CANvitational, a special annual event that Sun King holds along with dozens of breweries across the country in celebration of canned beer. The sleeve couples an intricate design with vibrant colors to create a visually stunning look.

The Gold Ink Awards competition is open to all creators and producers of printed materials, and encompasses nearly 50 categories within commercial printing, magazines, books, catalogs, digital printing and packaging. This year’s Gold Ink Award winners were chosen from nearly 1000 entries; winning pieces were chosen based on print quality, technical difficulty and overall visual effect.

A full list of this year’s winners can be found here.

Does your beer label tell the right story?

A recent packaging industry survey of U.S. craft beer consumers revealed some surprising statistics on what impact packaging—and specifically, the label—can have on a craft beer. Here is a look at some of those numbers and what they mean:

31% of consumers are influenced by packages or labels that features appealing, understandable descriptors. Craft beer is still a relatively new phenomenon, which means that a plethora of consumers are entering the market every day. These interested-yet-unfamiliar consumers greatly benefit from being informed—at a high level—what type of beer they are considering.

30% of consumers are looking for a package or label that includes familiar beer terms that keep them informed. Conversely, the experienced beer drinker will be looking for labels that convey more technical information. This can include anything from hop and malt characteristics to IBU and ABV percentages and allows them to make more discerning purchasing decisions. 

29% of consumers consider whether or not a craft beer comes from a brewery with a long history in the industry. With the wave of breweries that have opened across the country in the past 15 years, older breweries such as Anchor Brewing and Sierra Nevada Brewing boast a longevity that translates into quality in the eyes of the consumer. Both breweries embrace this point by utilizing a label design with a classic feel.

27% of consumers take into account the type of packaging when deciding to try a new product. Picture yourself as a beer consumer who is just deciding to get their feet wet in the world of craft. You love hops and find yourself standing in a bottle shop faced with dozens of IPAs you know nothing about, and not a lot of time to research your decision. How do you select your beer? In this instance, nothing is more persuasive than the label. 

22% of consumers are interested in craft beers that are produced either locally or from their own state. A common strategy for craft brewers is to identify their location in their branding. Great Lakes Brewing in Cleveland, OH named themselves after the region in which they are located and name their beers after local events and icons (Lake Erie Monster, Burning River Pale Ale, etc.) Incorporating local elements creates a sense of pride among consumers in the brewery’s community.  

The label on a craft beer bottle or can is far more than just an attractive logo on a piece of paper—it serves as a brand identifier, tells the story of the beer inside the bottle or can and, at times, is the only thing that influences consumer purchasing decisions. Learn more at centurylabel.com/craft-beer.

Cold Foil, Hot Stamp: Which Foil Process Works For You?

The Strongman Whey Protein Powder label was created using HD Flexo printing, four-color process, silver cold foil, and approximately 30,000 ft. of material (60,000 labels).

Congratulations! You’ve made the decision to give your product a glamorous new look by incorporating a metallic foil into your label design.

Only one question: do you plan on using cold foil or hot stamp?

If you haven’t considered this question, don’t feel bad—most who venture into the same territory haven’t either. While difficult to spot with the naked eye, there are many differences between the two processes and brand owners should familiarize themselves with the advantages to each before entering the world of foil.

Various wine labels printed multi-process, including hot stamp embellishments

How does Hot stamp work?

During the hot stamp process, a metal stamp of the soon-to-be-foiled design is created and mounted on a stamping machine above the paper. After heating the stamp, the sheet of foil runs between stamp and paper so that when pressure from the stamp is applied to the paper, the foil is affixed to the surface. This pressure, in turn, creates a noticeable, distinct feel.


Hot stamp creates a true metallic that has a distinctively lustrous look. Colors are deeper and brighter than cold foiled materials, and the number of shades available is constantly growing.

Big takeaways

While not ideal for designs utilizing heavy ink coverage or reverse print, hot stamp is most effective when adding highlights to a label or packaging. It can produce more dramatic results when paired with digital printing. The process better lends itself to shorter runs, which generally equates to less than 20,000 ft. of material.

How does Cold foil work?

Cold foil uses a Flexographic printing press and takes place when an adhesive that is UV-curable is printed on the paper, film or shrink sleeve in a specific shape or design. Foil is then pressed through a nip roller onto the substrate and the product is exposed to UV light. Finally, to finish the process, the foil is removed where no adhesive is present.


Cold foil’s fine detail and consistency make it ideal for situations where greater accuracy is required, such as small text. Additionally, cold foil offers the broadest range of colors because different color inks can be applied after the foil is on the paper.

Big takeaways

While hot stamp provides a high quality result, cold foil has its own set of advantages. Due to the inline nature of the process, as well as the fact that only a Flexographic plate—instead of a stamp or die—needs to be created, cold foil is a faster, more efficient process than hot stamp. It is best suited for long-run jobs, with a starting point of around 20,000-30,000 ft. of material, and can be used with a variety of substrates.

Hot or cold?

The choice of process boils down to a just a few factors. Brand owners working with a large inventory or looking for finer detail may want to consider cold foil, while hot stamp could be a more suitable option for those who place a premium on higher quality or are keeping a smaller inventory.

Regardless, both cold foil and hot stamp can add a shine and shelf appeal to your label that will give your product an elegant, sophisticated appearance.