With conventional self-adhesive labels, up to 40 percent of the total material goes into the trash. As soon as the label is removed, the paper or plastic backing material is no longer required. The result is mountains of waste. In Europe alone, up to 300,000 metric tons of paper and plastic liners end in landfill and incineration plants. Evonik TEGO® RC Silicones were the key for an innovative label systems that needs no liners at all.
The Evonik product from the Interface & Performance Business Line is applied invisibly to the upper surface of the print label over the printed surface. Then the labels can even be rolled up without sticking to each other. This not only saves 40 percent of the overall weight and the associated material costs but also conserves resources.
Efficient curing through ultraviolet radiation instead of heat
But how does it work? After all, the labels need to stick well at the intended point ofapplication. This is where ultraviolet light comes in: The Evonik silicones form a network when subjected to UV radiation and then cure. This way they adhere to the intended surface in fractions of a second. With conventional self-adhesive labels, this effect is achieved through heat. This means that the Evonik technology not only reduces waste. It also saves energy consumption compared to label systems with thermally cured silicones and it protects the label itself. This is referred to as “radiation cured” - in the market - this is the “RC” in the brand name of Evonik’s TEGO® RC Silicones.
Examples in daily life are packages of delivery services or in the supermarket at the cheese counter; in both cases, linerless labels are applied for printing the information about the goods on a thermal paper. For such heat sensitive thermal paper Evonik launched a special product TEGO® RC 730. Even extremely cost-effective thermal paper can now be used. A further economic advantage for Evonik’s RC technology in addition to the ecological benefit.