Thermal Transfer Coding on Chub Packaging

ID Technology Thermal Transfer Coder for Wet Environments Meat packaging plants are tough on equipment. The environment is often chilled, damp and everything has to be washed down regularly.

To avoid contamination of meat products, the hygiene in any packaging area is very thorough and can include some aggressive cleaning solutions, used to wash equipment at high pressure.

All in all, this is not a happy environment for coding equipment, such as thermal transfer overprinters. Because the delicate printheads need to be in direct contact with the packaging, it is difficult to protect the printers from the environment.

Here at ID Technology, we have installed a lot of our Communicator II overprinters into KartridgPak Chub packaging machines.

The Communicator II is a great printer for printing onto the film, before the chubs are formed. With its 5inch wide print area (2 inch wide is available as well), this digital printer is idea for printing text (lot and date codes, EST Numbers, etc) into the packages, as well as nutritional information, barcodes and graphics.

While the Communicator II is robustly designed, it certainly isn’t intended to be washed using chemicals and high pressure hoses. ID Technology’s solution is to build the Communicator II printer into a stainless steel enclosure that can be completely sealed at washdown time.

Thermal Transfer Overprinter & Enclosure on Chub Packaging Machine

Thermal Transfer Overprinter & Enclosure on Chub Packaging Machine

The stainless steel enclosure protects the printer at all times, the printer being enclosed completely, other than small openings for the packaging film to pass over the printer’s platen roller.

Coding text, barcodes and graphics on chub packaging

The printer (and its controller) snug in the enclosure

ID Technology’s hardware includes the enclosure and brackets to mount the printer and its controller as well as to guide the packaging film through the printer system and back to the parent machine.

Thermal Transfer Coder on  KartridgPak Chub Packaging Machine

Enclosure and Thermal Transfer Overprinter on K-Pack Machine

Doors on either side of the enclosure allow for easy access for replenishing printing ribbon and for any preventive maintenance. They are kept closed while the equipment is running.

When it is time to washdown the packaging line, the two doors that cover the film route are closed and the entire printing system is totally sealed, keeping the printer and touch screen controller happy and dry.

ID Technology specializes in labeling and coding systems for harsh environments and we have a range of solutions for coding and traceability in the meat and poultry industry.

Do you need to improve your coding and traceability systems? Contact us today to get started – 888-438-3242 Option#3 or you can contact me directly at We’ll get you in touch with one of our ID Technology specialists right in your area.

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