Kiaro! Grows Eastern Shore Tea Sales by 40%

The hallmarks of Eastern Shore Tea are their quality and packaging, and when we traveled to Baltimore, MD, that’s exactly what we came to find.

Baltimore Photographers

But first: a little about the owner.

Stanley Constantine, owner of Eastern Shore Tea Company and its parent company Baltimore Coffee & Tea, drinks 10 cups of tea every day.

He’s deliberate and engaged and speaks with a low-end sort of rumble that peaks half an octave higher when he reaches points of interest.

At the mention of his new labels, and the boon in sales since acquiring his new Kiaro! label printer, that octave jumps.

“It’s interesting,” Constantine says, “since we installed the Kiaro! our tea sales have increased an average of about 40%.” 

Then he takes a shallow breath, prepping for the big reveal, “Actually, one of our largest grocery chain customers told me that Eastern Shore Tea sales have increased 40% since we installed the Kiaro!.”

Eastern Shore Tea Company’s quality is unmatched, its process of making tea painstaking, and its customer service superior.

 “We haven’t changed anything – except the label quality,” says Constantine, when talking about the enormous and sustained 40% jump in tea sales, “I’m pretty convinced that the Kiaro! is responsible.”  

How the Kiaro! Did it

Baltimore Photographers

 “As I said before we’ve changed nothing else. We’ve changed none of our recipes, none of the other elements of our packaging,  save for the increased quality of the Kiaro!,” says Constantine.

“It has  improved our packaging ten-fold, and that’s really supported by the increase in sales that we’ve experienced.”

So the labels look good?

Linda Lang, manager of Eastern Shore Tea Company, and 11-year-employee thinks so. 

“It’s just amazing how good the Kiaro! can make the labels look,” she says, “the colors are rich and bright – it’s just completely changed the way the artwork on the labels looks.”

A Different Approach to Tea

“Eastern Shore teas differ from most national brands in a couple of different areas,” says Constantine. All of their teas are flavored naturally: they use real spices in their teas, not liquid flavorings, so in their teas, you’ll find real clove, real cinnamon, real ginger, real lemongrass.

 Eastern Shore Tea starts with full leaf tea, and then to increase surface exposure they use a hammer-mill to cut the leaves down to tea-bag size.

The Kiaro! Joins the Eastern Shore

“We brought a Kiaro! in, set it up, and we printed some logos and some of our graphics. I was astounded with the quality. With the Kiaro! printing at 1200dpi,” says Constantine, “we were blown away by the quality.”

“I was thrilled when I saw the Kiaro! labels for the first time,” says Linda Lang, “ it was pretty exciting. It even will reproduce photographs which are really amazing!”

tea labels

Private Labeling with the Kiaro!

Eastern Shore Tea has seen a large growth in customers requesting private label services, which they are uniquely set up to do because they’re totally vertically integrated.

“The Kiaro! has helped us with that goal,” explains Constantine, “because it’s so easy and effortless for us to create private labels for all of our customers.”

Eastern Shore Tea creates private label teas for major museums, grocers, and gourmet food stores around the country, but also for private functions and smaller parties.

“It’s effortless,” says Constantine, “one of our strong points is that our private label minimum is only 24 pieces. The reason it’s so low is that the Kiaro! is just effortless. We can easily print and go to production and it’s out the door the same day. It’s made our life a lot easier.”

Printing Tea Labels on Demand

Eastern Shore Tea went with the Kiaro! because they needed to print labels on-demand, and as needed.  “In the past, we would have to order 10,000 of every single label. Now,” says Constantine, “we print over 300 SKUs on the Kiaro!. The ability to print on demand has saved us an incredible amount of money because we’re stocking only blank labels and we print as we need.”

Linda Lang loves how the Kiaro! has eliminated their inventory of pre-printed labels, “The labels aren’t sitting on the shelf for long periods of time. It’s just so easy to go and print a few labels with the Kiaro!.” With the Kiaro! Eastern Shore Tea Company prints large or small runs, at 8inches per second, for immediate, on-demand label printing.

“As much as I like the Kiaro!, I like the people at QuickLabel Systems even more. Of all the vendors we deal with, and we deal with vendors all over the world, the people at QuickLabel comprise the best vendor that we have,” says Constantine.

See How They Do It!

We even traveled down to Baltimore and shot some video in the Eastern Shore Tea facility! We watched them print labels, cut tea, package their products, and even visited their beautiful store-front. Check it out!

Quick Fitting Prints Their Plumbing Labels

AstroNova visited a company called Quick Fitting nearby headquarters in Warwick, Rhode Island. Quick Fitting manufactures a “quick connection” plumbing and heating technology.

Their “Push to Connect” products provide a simple, safe, and cost-effective solution for connecting copper, stainless steel, PEX, and CPVC piping in plumbing and heating applications.

We were greeted by the CEO of Quick Fitting, David Crompton, Walter Tavares, Production Coordinator, and also Eric Sanches, Quick Fitting’s Production Manager. They immediately made us feel welcome and toured us around their entire building.

It was neat to see their facility and how the packaging process was completed. All of the employees working in the packaging room were playing their music loud, singing, and having fun while they got their jobs done. Definitely a great way to help the workday go by!

David led us to one of Quick Fitting’s nicely decorated board rooms, where Charles would conduct the first interview with him. I felt like I was on the set of a movie with so many hot lights, the microphone, and camera set up. Their interview went remarkably well, and then it was my turn to put my interviewing skills to the test. I had the pleasure of interviewing Walter, followed by Eric, and the outcome was very successful!

Quick Fitting supplies their connection products to retailers across the nation, which is where the Kiaro! (now the QL-120X) comes into play most. With so many different connections and products, Quick Fitting needs plumbing labels printed for each different product. Therefore, Quick Fitting needed to find a durable label such as the Kiaro! to provide the quality, consistency, and durability that for which they were looking.

Prior to finding the Kiaro!, Quick Fitting ordered their plumbing labels pre-printed, and that didn’t always work for them. Retailer customers were always changing their label designs, they would run out of stock, or packaging standards would change; leaving them with wasted labels. With the Kiaro!, Quick Fitting is able to print the correct plumbing labels that they need, when they need them.

Before Quick Fitting began using the Kiaro!, if they were short labels for an order, they could not send the shipment out that day. So, they would need to expedite the pre-printed labels to their facility and wait until their arrival in order to ship out the products. Now, if they are even a few labels short, the Kiaro! will print as many or few labels necessary to complete the order.

Eric said, “When using the Kiaro! we actually get to see the labels printed right in front of us. If there are any mistakes in the label design, you get to fix them, right then and there… It cut our time by more than 80%.”

Walter printed some labels for us, showing just how simple and easy it is for him to produce labels on his Kiaro! printer. You will be able to see just how he does it, along with the interviews, in our Quick Fitting video that will be released later this month.

The Kiaro! has saved Quick Fitting a substantial amount of time and money, cutting costs by about 40%, according to CEO David Crompton. They are no longer waiting around for shipments, never waste labels, and the outcome is always exactly what they need. Watch the video below.

Check out Quick Fitting’s website to learn more about their Push-to-Connect technology and how you can utilize their products for your own plumbing and heating needs!

Great Cosmetic Labels for CJ’s Unique Boutique

AstroNova had the pleasure of visiting CJ’s Unique Boutique in June to interview them for a video. We got to meet everyone behind the brand, see their extensive line of scented and unscented “BUTTer” products, and watch their Kiaro! label printer (also known as “Kiki” around their office) in action.

Check out the video for yourself, and see just how CJ’s creates its own beautiful cosmetic labels!

Have you ever tried every product imaginable to find a solution to your problem? CJ Miller has.

She was simply trying to find a product to cure her son’s terrible diaper rash, but nothing worked. So, she decided to take matters into her own hands and stood over her stove until she created her own diaper cream to help relieve her son.

CJs_Unique_Boutique_Downtown_Colorado_Springs

CJ’s Unique Boutique, located in Colorado Springs, Colorado, and has been producing its all-natural BUTTer since 2008. CJ and her husband Mark Miller, CEO of CJ’s Unique Boutique, use only the finest, all-natural ingredients in their products. Except now, they are no longer limited to diaper cream – but also offer lotions, body sprays, lip balms, and bug spray, among many other products.

Their company grew so fast that in no time they went from their kitchen to a fully equipped facility in the city. Last year, CJ stood in her new production facility, with hundreds of bottles, tubes, and tubs surrounding her. Although she had expanded far beyond her original kitchen, she knew that there was one big component missing from her amazing products: an equally amazing label.

So, what did CJ do? She brought on the Kiaro! inkjet label printer (now the QL-120X).

As their business grew, so had the demand for labels. CJ and Mark realized that they needed a label printer capable of meeting their high standards and complementing their wonderful products.

The importance of packaging and labeling is just one of the lessons that CJ and Mark have learned since starting their business.

Because CJ’s has so many products and over 30 fragrance options, they needed to find a label printer capable of printing cosmetic labels in large batch volumes, in a variety of sizes, in any color, and with astonishing detail. The durable, quality labels that the Kiaro! produced for CJ’s was everything that the company was searching for.

Ryan Flynt, Webmaster and Social Media Coordinator at CJ’s works with the Kiaro! often. So often, in fact, that he even began calling his Kiaro! by the affectionate nickname of “Kiki.” Ryan designs the label artwork, prints labels daily, and handles everything concerning his printer, Kiki.

Ryan loves his Kiaro! and says that “It’s a cost-effective time-saving printer. It creates excellent quality labels for our packaging, and I couldn’t be happier.”

cosmetic labels

As the Kiaro! prints quickly (at 1200 dpi) it never fails to print beautifully, without any wasted labels. The Kiaro! has saved CJ’s a great amount of time and money, especially because of their need for moisture-resistant and scratch-resistant labels that look great no matter what they may encounter.

After CJ’s began printing their own labels for each of their products, Heather Hodge, general manager of CJ’s Unique Boutique, immediately noticed a difference in the durability and overall look of their labels. The Kiaro! labels don’t wash off CJ’s products when wet, don’t scratch off, and stay intact throughout daily travel and wear and tear.  “We no longer have people calling and saying I think this might have been your product- can you help me try and figure it out?” Heather said.

Hodge said that one of the best qualities of the Kiaro! is how simple it is to use. The software is easy to learn, and any adjustments are easy to make. Training staff members is a breeze, according to Flynt. “It doesn’t take a long time even to show someone how to load the labels into the printer,” Webmaster Flynt said.

“If time is money, and you want to spend less time working with what needs to get produced,” Flynt said, “this is the printer for you.”

If you would like to check out CJ’s products and try some BUTTer yourself, visit CJ’s Unique Boutique’s website!

To keep up with the latest CJ’s Unique Boutique news and product announcements, follow their Facebook and Twitter pages!

For any direct questions or inquiries about CJ’s and their products, you may contact them by email at cjsuniqueboutique@gmail.com

We had an excellent experience visiting CJ’s Unique Boutique and look forward to seeing all of their coming success!

O&H Danish Bakery Adds to Their Sweet Success

O&H Bakery Loves the Kiaro! Inkjet Label Printer

AstroNova visited O&H Danish Bakery in Racine, Wisconsin. This family bakery is a tradition in the area, and all over the world. Their most well-known product is the traditional Danish kringle. This labor-intensive flakey buttery pastry with delicious filling is popular not only in all of their Racine retail locations but also all over the world.  O&H ships their melt-in-your-mouth kringles globally.

bakery labelsO&H loves working with QuickLabel for many reasons O&H President and Owner Eric Olesen said, “Our bakery was founded on a principle of if we are going to do something let’s do it well. Knowing that we can do something well still isn’t good enough, we want to continue to get better at what we do. For instance, one of the reasons that we chose Kiaro! (now the QL-120X) for a label printer is that we really like the quality. I’m a firm believer that people eat with their eyes. Part of the experience of shopping for bakery is not looking just at the bakery but the first thing they are going to see many times it the label that’s on the bakery product. So we really want good detail, one that’s well representing that image that we are trying to portray on the label and I think that the Kiaro! label printer does just that for us.”

O&H Danish kringles come in a wide variety of flavors. Personally, I loved the one with cherry filling. We were also lucky enough to sample some of their other baked goods which include pies, cookies, bread, cakes, and much more. I highly recommend all of the flavors though, so go ahead and order a kringle today!

O&H loves the possibilities that the Kiaro! provides. They value the savings they get and being able to keep up with FDA label requirements and ever-changing ingredients without ever wasting a roll of bakery labels.

Of course, they also love the quality of the printer and labels Wendy Xavier, Administrative Quality Control Manager explained. “The most impressive feature of the Kiaro! is the quality of the picture. The round labels that we do, those are my favorite because it has a picture of the bakery on it. It’s very clear and it’s just really good quality.

If you would like to see for yourself how the Kiaro! inkjet label printer will help you gain more customers to schedule a virtual demonstration in your office or factory.

La Crema Coffee’s Prints Artistic Coffee Labels

La Crema Coffee Loves Printing Their Coffee Labels In-House

As I walked through the front doors of the pink and green painted building, I was enveloped in the smell of butterscotch, vanilla, and caramel coffee. This heavenly scent is otherwise known as freshly brewed Grumpy Grog from La Crema Coffee Company. One look at the colorful coffee labels and bright green packaging and I was sold.

La Crema Coffee Company in Hamilton, Ohio is a wonderful boutique coffee roaster with a wide variety of seasonal roasts and specialized packaging. Actually, they are rapidly outgrowing the “boutique” title since they roasted and sold over 500,000 pounds of coffee beans last year.

I had a great time meeting La Crema owner Melissa Flohn in person (finally!) and seeing for myself just how well La Crema Coffee is doing with their Kiaro! label printer (now the QL-120X). I was in awe of their unique, well thought out coffee product lines that make the perfect gift item, and had a chance to admire their seasonal coffee label designs for all of next year!

Melissa told me that the packaging of La Crema coffee is just as important as its taste because the packaging draws the customer in while the taste and quality keep the customer coming back. “The most important thing for packaging at retail is design and color. When I do a trade show, the first thing I hear when my customers say when they walk up to the booth is ‘oh my goodness I love all the color and look at the beautiful labels on that package,’” she said.

Their coffee label artwork is just that – artwork. That is why La Crema Coffee collaborates with artist Amy Gantt of Lula Bell Art and Designs. Amy loves knowing that her label artwork will be printed by the Kiaro! with nothing to hinder her creativity. She exclaimed that, “I know with the Kiaro! printer, I don’t have to think about it. I know I can create artwork that I truly believe in and the Kiaro! printer will print it as I create it.”

Another benefit of owning the Kiaro! is its ability to print labels on-demand, as needed to fulfill orders. La Crema loves that they don’t end up over-purchasing coffee labels that will sit on a shelf for months, or waste labels if they change the artwork or product information.

Melissa explained that shipping fresh coffee and printing labels on-demand go together, saying, “We think it’s very important that coffee doesn’t sit on a warehouse shelf. Everything is roasted to order, when a customer orders their coffee we actually roast it, flavor it, and package it when the order is taken. The labels are even created when that customer orders.”

Not only does this keep them from having a stock of labels sitting around, but it also saves them money.

Melissa told us that the Kiaro! label printer is a winning combination of time and money savings. “The Kiaro! has saved us a lot of time and a lot of money. This is a really important thing for me: it doesn’t waste labels which is very very important.”

The ability of the Kiaro! to print without wasting even one label between batches makes Kiaro! owners happy because they know their savings will add up!

Melissa likes “the fact that QuickLabel has taken care of all of our needs. It’s actually a one-stop for us and when you’re running a business that’s very important. We make one call, whether it be a service call or to order supplies and it’s finished.”

I was thrilled to hear Melissa say that because as QuickLabel employees, we’re proud that QuickLabel  Systems is here to support Kiaro! owners in everything from hands-on product training to ordering labels and inks, to getting technical support assistance if needed.

Melissa sums up her 7 months of experience with the Kiaro! label printer this way: “We love the Kiaro! It is worth the investment. It’s going to save you time. It’s going to save you money. It’s going to achieve the colors you are looking for in your packaging. With beautiful packaging, your sales will definitely increase.”

If you like 100% Colombian coffee that looks as good as it tastes, you’ll love La Crema Coffee Company. To find out where you can buy La Crema coffee gifts, contact Melissa by email at Melissa@LaCremaCoffeeCompany.com, or by telephone at 513-779-6278.  You’ll love Lulla Bell Designs by Amy Gantt. Check out her design store here: http://www.lulabellart.com/gifts.html

If you would like to enjoy the same sweet success that La Crema Coffee Company has, then contact us today to schedule an in-person demonstration of the Kiaro! in your factory or office!

How Progressive Labs Prints their Own Supplement Labels

AstroNova visited Progressive Labs in Irving, Texas. It was so fascinating to visit another of our Kiaro! customers and to see the process of manufacturing high-quality dietary supplements, from the mixing to the encapsulating and tableting to the supplement bottle labeling.

Progressive Labs is a family-owned and operated company located in Irving, Texas that manufactures professional-grade dietary supplements. The company is GMP compliant, registered with the FDA, and licensed by the Texas Department of Health.

When we spoke, Progressive Labs’ employees surprised us by highlighting the simplicity of using the Kiaro! label printer (now the QL-120X), and its consistency and reliability. “With the Kiaro!, you hit the print button and it prints – first time, every time. And, you have a roll of finished labels that you don’t have to worry about,” said Ronald Labelle, Creative Director of Progressive Labs.

We were thrilled to see how excited they were about being able to make their own labels for dietary supplements and being able to offer special private label supplements for doctors and chiropractors.

Labelle told us how, along with some amazing mixing and encapsulating equipment they have for manufacturing supplements, they are very thankful to have the high-speed Kiaro! as their in-house labeling tool.

“The Kiaro! color label system really is a phenomenal system. It produces labels at a rate that I’ve never seen before,” said Labelle.

About Progressive Labs

Progressive Labs subjects all incoming raw materials to quality testing so they can ensure customers of the high quality of all of their ingredients. I was so impressed with how thorough they are in testing all of their raw ingredients to ensure the highest quality products going out to customers.

It was SO clean there too! I noticed employees in the manufacturing areas changing gloves after touching anything and not even touching doors with their hands as they walkthrough. It definitely topped my OCD housekeeping skills, and I don’t let people wear shoes in the house!

That is why you get to see this lovely picture of us getting ready to tour their facility. I especially like the beard covers that the guys had to wear! Do you think they look a bit like Santa or surgeons?

The people at Progressive Labs really care about helping others to be as healthy as possible. Larry Thompson, Progressive Labs President, said, “Our products are manufactured to help the body heal itself. We make sure we are always sourcing the highest quality, the highest grade of raw material possible, so we know that the finished product is of the highest quality we can possibly get.”

“We want our customers to understand that our products have been formulated by – and for – healthcare practitioners and they are designed to help their bodies without the side effects associated with pharmaceuticals.”

Why Progressive Labs Chose the Kiaro! to Print Supplement Labels

supplement labels

Progressive Labs has been a loyal QuickLabel customer, and have found success in owning a Zeo! color label printer and QLS-4100 Xe thermal label printer. This is why they were so excited to get the Kiaro! when it became available.

Greg Dragna, Director of Label Production at Progressive Labs, emphasized the productivity of the Kiaro!. “In the five months that we’ve had the Kiaro!, we’ve printed around 250,000 labels. When I first saw the Kiaro! running, I was pretty amazed by the speed of it,” he said.

The Kiaro! label printer is fantastic for printing a variety of labels quickly, making things much easier for companies with many different products that need to be labeled.

“We have 270 products we manufacture under our own label, and we print those labels in-house. The Kiaro! label printer allows us the flexibility to manufacture our products on the schedule we need,” said Thompson.

Now is your chance to see for yourself a tour of their fascinating vitamin manufacturing facility and their label printers and applicators hard at work getting labeled products ready to ship!

Are you interested in printing your own supplement labels? Schedule a virtual demonstration 

Personalized Seasoning Labels Add Flavor for J.O. Spice

Considering that it’s the state’s official crustacean, it’s safe to say that Maryland is known for its love of the blue crab. For the past 67 years, one company has been in the business of making this local delicacy even more delicious: J.O. Spice. “J.O. Spice is the flavor of Maryland!” said Kathleen Duncan, one of the company’s enthusiastic employees. “When you enjoy seafood in our state, especially crabs, I can almost guarantee that you are tasting J.O. Spice.”

People in the Chesapeake Bay area ask for J.O. Spice crab seasoning by name. One of Maryland’s best kept secrets, J.O. Spice’s seafood seasonings, spices, batters, breading, and soups are also used in virtually every crab house and seafood restaurant along the East Coast – pretty impressive!

Cracking Into Custom Label Printing …

Whenever there is a special event going on in the Baltimore area, crab lovers want to incorporate their favorite meal into the event. J.O. Spice’s custom-labeled spices and seasonings have become popular wedding favors and are often paired with their personalized crab mallets.

Printing Custom Spice Labels Since 1945

Since their opening in 1945, J.O. has been custom blending and custom labeling their line of spices for restaurants. “We’ve always offered custom labeled seasoning and spices,” explains Duncan, “but as technology has advanced so has the demand for custom seasoning labels.”

When J.O. Spice realized they needed to seasoning labelsbring label printing in-house in order to keep up with the demand for custom labels, they had some decisions to make. One was to find an in-house label printer capable of printing the kind of seasoning labels they wanted to offer to their customers.

When they discovered QuickLabel Systems, J.O. settled on two of our color label printers: the Zeo! light-duty inkjet label printer and the Vivo! Touch production-capacity label printer. “The Vivo! Touch and the Zeo! label printers have advanced the quality of our label printing needs,” said Duncan.

J.O. Spice’s local sales engineer, Tony Bucci, explains, “the Vivo! Touch was a solution that provided J.O. Spice high quality, full-color labels like their Zeo! but is much faster & less expensive (per label).”  Bucci gave an on-site demonstration of the Vivo! Touch at J.O. Spice and they were pleased with what they saw, “as soon as I was able to demonstrate the Vivo! Touch and show them the productivity there was no looking back.”

Old-Fashioned Customer Service

If you’re interested in ordering seasonings or spices with personalized labels or custom-engraved mallets, J.O. Spice makes buying as easy and personalized as their products. All you have to do is make an old-fashioned phone call to 1-800-537-5714 or send an email to Ginger (jospiceginger@yahoo.com), Marketing and Sales Manager, and tell her what you want on your personalized product.

Kathleen Duncan will then come up with a seasoning labelsdesign based on what you’re looking for and send you a proof. Duncan is a seasoned (no pun intended!) graphic artist who loves what she does. “Most customers approve their proofs the first time around and are very happy!”  Once the custom label proof is approved, payment can be made by mail or over the phone. “It’s old-fashioned personalized customer service throughout the whole ordering process all the way up to the arrival of your products!” Duncan proudly explained.

Duncan loves hearing the customers’ expressions of appreciation when they see the finished product. “The emails and referrals I receive from happy customers is overwhelming and makes my job very rewarding.”

seasoning labelsAs far as picking her favorite label, Duncan said she can’t – every label she designs is unique in its own right. Duncan strives to tailor each personalized spice label especially for each wedding couple or for each special event. “It’s always fun to let your imagination run wild while designing,” she said. “Seeing the finished product is rewarding. Most times it comes out better than I imagined!”

“It’s amazing how much personality you can bring out in a label by the use of design and color. Now that we have our Vivo! Touch and Zeo!, our color selection is endless.” With “vivid and bold” label colors, Duncan said that she can create label designs from “bold and sassy to simple and understated.”

Luckily, the fact that her QuickLabel printers really deliver makes the time spent designing custom labels for her customers well worth it. “Printing our own labels in-house has allowed us to print a quality label at an affordable price which allows us to offer custom seasoning labeling with a smaller minimum requirement.”

Eat Like a Local, Talk like a Local

Although J.O. Spice has always specialized in seasoning labelsspices and seasonings, they are “more than just a spice company, for sure!” said Duncan. The products in their store range from spices and seasonings to crab mallets and apparel.

I took a lesson in crab lingo when talking to Duncan about the personalized crab mallets. I referred to them as hammers, which gave her a giggle. She shared, “You can always tell when someone is from out of town with inquiries about custom mallets.” How? Just like me, J.O.’s out of town customers will refer to the mallets as “mallets,” “hammers,” “crab crackers,” and “knockers.” “The term we use in Maryland is ‘mallets,’” Duncan said, “but we enjoy hearing all the other terms that are used!”

JO Spice’s Old Fashioned Customer Service Meets QuickLabel’s Customer Support

Being such passionate advocates for customer service, J.O. Spice has high expectations for the service they receive – just as they should! Luckily for us, we have met those expectations.

“The customer service and support from QuickLabel have been great,” Duncan shared with us. “If we ever have a troubleshooting problem everyone at QuickLabel has been great at getting us the support that we need. Our QuickLabel printers have proved to be a great business investment!”

Want A Taste of What J.O. Spice Has to Offer?

You can check out their website and online store at store.jospices.com. Or call Ginger at 1-800-537-5714.

Adelbert’s Brewery Taps Into Austin’s Craft Beer Market

A Hoppy Sighting In Austin…beer labels

While traveling in the Austin, TX area, our Product Manager Kevin Brisson spotted some very unique-looking craft beer on the shelf at the flagship Whole Foods Store. Kevin saw Adelbert’s  Brewery Triple B, Scratchin’ Hippo, and Dancin’ Monk at Whole Foods  – wow that’s HUGE for Adelbert’s! He took a quick photo and sent it home for all of us to see – he knew how excited we would be because Adelbert’s Brewery prints beer labels with the Vivo! Touch color label printer (now obsolete, see our updated toner printer the QL-300).

Adelbert’s Brewery is an Austin-based microbrewery that just released its first round of bottle-conditioned Belgian-style beers to stores in December and opened its doors to the public in March with a Grand Opening that featured beer sampling and live music.

How Does Adelbert’s Make Their Delicious Brews?

Adelbert’s Brewery has committed themselves to brew Belgian-style bottle-conditioned ales.  For those who aren’t sure exactly what “bottle conditioned” means, it is a process of unfiltering the beers so that the final “conditioning” takes place in the bottle itself, or the beer is filtered and then “reseeded” with yeast so that additional fermentation may take place in the bottle. It is Adelbert’s belief that such conditioning with quality ingredients and attention to detail during the brewing process makes for the best-brewed beers.

Adelbert’s uses Bohemian old-world floor malted barley – say that ten times fast after 2 or 3 of their Rambler Ales! They also use low alpha Noble Czech hops and fresh yeast that is produced onsite at the brewery. Adelbert has a five vessel brewhouse. Each batch of beer is conditioned for a minimum of six weeks, and three of the six weeks are spent in the fermentation vessels. During the next three weeks, the beer is conditioned in bottles or kegs, which allows natural carbonation and flavor development. Is your mouth watering yet?

What’s Brewin’ Now?beer labels

Right now Adelbert has five Belgian brews for your enjoyment:  Rambler Ale, Scratchin’ Hippo, Dancin Monks, Tripel B, and Naked Nun. Adelbert’s is also planning to release 2 more brews in May and June:  Black Rhino (Dark Ale) and Philosophizer (Saison Ale.) You can try these delicious brews in 750ml bottles, kegs, or on draft in Austin, Dallas, Houston, and other areas throughout Texas – keep your eyes peeled!

Congratulations Adelbert’s Brewery on successful product launch and a very bright future. We’re happy to provide a labeling solution to a great company with such unique products. Your beer labels, just like your beer, came out great! Cheers!

Philabundance: Re-Packaging Food Donations to Phil-Up the Delaware Valley Region

The holiday season is a time for giving. Lucky for me, I had a golden opportunity to give just before the holidays this year when our customer, my friend Jonathan Miller of the hunger-relief organization Philabundance,  extended an offer for me and the rest of the QuickLabel team to go down to Philadelphia and volunteer our time packaging food donations.

Philabundance is the Delaware Valley’s leading hunger-relief organization. AstroNova is proud to have such a world-class charitable organization using the QuickLabel Pronto! 486 (now the QL-30) to help repack and distribute donated food items.

How Philabundance Squashes Hunger

Philabundance feeds approximately 65,000 people per week. You might think because of its name that it only works to fight hunger in Philadelphia, but that isn’t the case: “Philabundance serves nine counties across Pennsylvania and New Jersey.” Beneficiaries might not be who you imagine either: “23% … are children, 16% are senior citizens, and the rest are families and single adults that are homeless, mentally disabled, or receive support from other social programs,” explained Senior Re-pack Manager Jonathan Miller.

In 2005, Philabundance integrated with the Philadelphia Food Bank and has since worked with more than 500 member agencies to contribute to food cupboards, emergency kitchens, shelters, daycares, and senior centers across the Delaware Valley Region in PA and NJ. “Our food acquisition team works very hard to solicit donations from corporations and from individuals,” said Miller. With contributions from food drives, food manufacturers, wholesale retailers, farmers, and financial donations, they have created a strong supply chain that provides hunger relief to Delaware Valley communities.

Once Philabundance receives these donations, it works quickly to repurpose them in the community. “From [acquisition], the repack and warehouse teams process the food and get it ready for distribution. Once the food is ready for distribution, our fleet of 13 trucks deliver the food to our network of 500 agencies, and to our direct service programs: Fresh For All and our Community Food Center.

Printing Labels … Pronto!

Philabundance has relied on the Pronto! 486 barcode label printer to streamline its re-packaging operation. Philabundance has such a high volume of donations coming in that they needed a quick solution to up the ante in their packaging process. “Primarily for high-volume labeling, the Pronto! helps us keep up. The operation goes pretty fast, it’s pretty big, so we needed a high demand, high volume label printer. The way the food comes of the line, the way the boxes get packed, we need something that keeps up and the Pronto! 486 has been a great help in fulfilling our production and keeping our volume high,” said Miller. “We love using it. We’re using the Pronto! to package our individual goods and bulk items.”

Re-Packing Donations to Beet Hunger

Each day Miller and his team use their QuickLabel Pronto! barcode printer to print an average of 2,500 labels. The Pronto! labels are then placed on the sides of repacked food boxes in the “repacking phase” of the Philabundance production line.

Food that is donated to Philabundance goes through a production line where it is sorted by food type (i.e. baking goods vs. crackers). Once the food is sorted by type, it is packed into boxes, weighed, and labeled with a Pronto!-printed label.

While we were there volunteering, I repacked bulk boxes of baking goods. Each bulk box had to contain 15 pounds worth of baking goods, no less and no more. Once I packed and weighed each box, it was sealed with packing tape. Next, we gave it a label printed by the Pronto! 486 which stated the food type and weight.

Philabundance also packages smaller, individual boxes with foods such as packages of pasta. In this scenario, Miller creates box labels with nutritional facts panels and the Philabundance logo by using the intuitive NiceLabel® labeling software that was purchased to drive the Pronto! 486 label printer. (show image of scanned labels here) This repacking system makes the shipping, packaging, and inventory process much easier and more efficient for Philabundance. “The Pronto! definitely has been a lifesaver for our organization,” said Miller. “If you want to streamline your operation, cut down on your downtime, and really be able to improve the look of your product, then a Pronto! 486 is the printer for you.”

Feeling the FulPHILment

After working at Philabundance for six-year, Miller said that his favorite part of the job is still “Knowing when I walk out the door at the end of the day that I helped someone in need get food – I helped someone eat.” After spending just a day at Philabundance, we at QuickLabel are also proud to have been a small part of a bigger effort and happy that our products have been able to contribute to Philabundance.

Food Insecurity Rose by 26% From 2010-2011

Unfortunately, the Delaware Valley is growing in food insecurity. Over the last year, Philabundance has seen a 26% increase in the size of the population it serves – and this increase comes on the heels of a prior increase of 22% between 2009-2010. “There are almost 900,000 people in need in the Delaware Valley,” said Miller.

“Can You Peas Help?”

Philabundance is working hard to end food insecurity. “It’s unacceptable,” said Miller simply.  If you would like to help Philabundance fight hunger by volunteering your time, by donating food items, or by contributing money, you can do so by visiting their website: www.Philabundance.org

“Together We Can …” in Social Media

The use of social media has had an outstanding impact on Philabundance’s reach to the community. Having a number of public platforms has helped Philabundance accomplish its mission. Philabundance currently has 11,000 Facebook friends and over 2,500 Twitter followers who are “There to find out whether we have a big event planned for the week and also if we need volunteers for a shift,” explained Miller. On top of keeping followers and friends up-to-date with posts, Philabundance also has a YouTube channel where you can go to get a look into its day-to-day activities.

I am personally thrilled about what Phialbundance is doing to fight hunger and am so happy my coworkers and I were welcomed to their home with open arms to donate our time not only to help a customer of ours but to also help the food insecure of the Delaware Valley region. It is amazing what Philabundance is able to accomplish and the outpouring of volunteers they see day after day. Although our part was a small piece compared to what they do each and every day, it was very meaningful to us. It feels great to be able to say you were even a small part of Philabundance’s work. Thank you to Jonathan, Anthony, David, and the rest of the Philabundance team for giving us an experience we’ll remember for a lifetime!

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