Hub Labels Celebrates The 10 Year Anniversary of Linerless Labels

Celebrating 10 Years in Linerless

Hub Labels, Inc was the first to introduce the Ravenwood Packaging Linerless Label Solution to the United States in 2009. Ten years later, Hub Labels has seen tremendous growth in the linerless market as companies seek ways to increase sustainability and efficiency advantages.

When Hub Labels, Inc decided to incorporate linerless labels into their portfolio, the label was unproven in the North American market but was a great success in Europe for years. Thomas Dahbura, president of Hub Labels, Inc, saw the potential for the technology and its ability to provide a “green” label solution, as linerless labels produce zero waste during the die cutting process and there is no liner backing to end up in a landfill. Linerless labels are made by strategically placed adhesive strips on the underside of the label. To ensure the labels do not stick together when placed on a roll, the label face has a release coating that prevent the labels from sticking to one another. In the application line, the labels are guillotine-cut before being applied to the package.

No liner also equates to:
• Less reel weight
• Reduced shipping costs
• Reduced inventory space
• Less materials needed when producing labels
• Reduced down-time due to roll changes
• Elimination of downtime due to troubleshoot liners breaking and tension points

Traditionally, a product may have multiple labels including a face label, a bottom ingredients labels, and additional store labels. These labels cover up what is being purchased and get plastered all over a package haphazardly. By going linerless, more of the product can shine through the packaging and can increases confidence that a product is fresh and healthy for consumption. Interestingly, this one label approach has also increased the marketing potential of a package. Labels are no longer restricted to the top and bottom of the package and can now wrap entirely around a product to create a 360° brand that can be seen on the shelf no matter how it is displayed. There is also the additional benefit of having the ability to print on both sides of the label (reverse-side printing) which increases the brand’s ability to connect to a consumer.

Some of the advantages of linerless labels include:
• Full color, high-end graphics
• Option to print on the back side of the label (reverse-side printing)
• Less waste due to no liner, no die cut waste and optimum adhesive placement
• No wet glue in production
• Less risk to slip-fall injury from liner waste
• Thermal transfer variable print ability (such as bar codes, weights, price and item name) at time of application

Linerless labels have proven to be a great solution for the protein sectors, including meat, chicken and fish but as consumers demands has shifted towards more healthier options and on-the-go packaging, linerless has seen a boom in produce and bakery goods. Linerless labels are now found in every supermarket across the United States and Hub Labels, Inc continues to be at the forefront of the linerless revolution.

Download our whitepaper on GOING LINERLESS.

Hub Hosts MWCC

Hub Labels Hosts MWCC Quarterly Conference

Hub Labels hosted the Quarterly Conference of the Maryland World Class Consortia (MWCC) on March 6th at their facility in Hagerstown, Maryland. The MWCC is a non‐profit organization built and sustained through the involvement of state and local government, expert practitioners and service providers, and a diverse collection of member companies (manufacturing, aerospace and defense, engineering, financial service firms, health care providers, commercial and food products, and many others). With a focus on lean business practices, participation in the MWCC enables businesses to share experiences, leverage the power of support networks, learn from peers and accelerate cultural transformation.

Jesse Hood, Hub Labels’ Continuous Improvement Manager, talked to the attendees about a project initiated to boost employee engagement – the Shingo Insight Assessment – a tool that measures an organization’s culture. Michael Myers of the Business Improvement Group presented on his experience with Toyota Kata. The presentations provided great insight into the challenges and exciting growth in the manufacturing industry. By coming together and sharing experiences, members are able to find innovative solutions to common problems that they can use when they go back to their facilities. The goal is to change the culture and perception of how companies do business from an old, antiquated thinking to a modern, lean and green approach.

After the presentations, attendees of the MWCC meeting were invited to take a tour of Hub Labels’ 110,000 square foot facility. Hub Labels takes great pride in embracing lean manufacturing through the use of eco‐friendly water‐based and UV inks, recycling of a liner paper waste and decreasing their environmental impact and carbon footprint.

To learn more about the Maryland World Class Consortia, please visit their website.

Linerless & Pressure Sensitive Label MPS EF 430 Press

Hub Labels installs a MPS press for Linerless Labels

Hub Labels installed a MPS EF 430 printing press, which is mainly used for linerless labels application, in the spring of 2018. Only two companies in the United States are offering this more environmentally friendly label solution to their customers.

Hub Labels, Inc. introduced linerless labels to the US Markets in the 2009. Linerless provides many of the same benefits as self-adhesive labeling but with many additional benefits including improved efficiencies, volume applications and environmental advantages because they do not use label liners.

Standard linerless labels are available in silicone coated paper, board or synthetic materials. The semi-adhesive label format partially adheres to a pack through a series of strategically placed glue strips. Label facestocks are then supplied without liners. This leads to a reduction of reel weight by up to 40%, which means less weight waste, storage area and fewer reel changeovers.

In February 2018, the family-owned company decided to invest in a MPS EF 430 for printing linerless labels and ps labels and since installation, the company has seen significant improvements in quality and speed when running linerless on the press. The MPS EF is an automated multi-substrate flexographic press, specially designed to print labels and flexible packaging on a range of substrates. The addition of the EF will provide Hub Labels, Inc. with flexibility through its ability to print a range of substrates including thin film, paper, shrink sleeves and flexible packaging.

“MPS and the Hub Labels teams collaborated months before the actual installation of the press. We reviewed out timelines and clearly communicated our expectations to each other”, comments Hub Labels president Thomas Dahbura on the cooperation with the press manufacturer. “We had the press shipped to us from overseas and ran into some delays caused by a winter storm, but both MPS and Hub Labels were flexible and reacted professionally to the delay. MPS worked more than 12 hours a day to get back on track and finish on schedule.”

The sale was led by Michael Weyermann, area sales manager at MPS Systems North America. Weyermann comments: “We are glad to see that Hub Labels was convinced by the MPS quality and the flexibility of the EF press. This press offers them new capabilities in the high-speed production of various substrates, especially the production of sustainable, environmentally friendly linerless labels.”

Thomas Dahbura sees further growth potential on the newer applications. “Linerless is not only more sustainable due to the overall packaging savings. It can also be used for products such as poultry, meat, seafood, produce, bakery items and more. We are very excited to offer this new option to our customers to help them grow their brand with us” states Dahbura. “The addition of this press complements the current full service, one-stop solution to existing customers as well as nurturing new customers, especially in the linerless label market by offering a wider web and unsupported film printing solutions.”

Hub Labels, Inc., manufacturer of pressure-sensitive and linerless labels is located in Hagerstown, Maryland. On February 21st of 2018, Hub Labels celebrated the new MPS EF press with a ribbon cutting ceremony at their facility that featured the MPS EF 430 printing press running local business, Perdue Farms’, linerless labels. Hub Labels‘ pressure sensitive labels manufacture many regional and national brand names and can be found in over 70% of households mid-atlantic region.

Hub Labels Hosts International Visitors

We hosted some of Heidelberg’s customers from Japan to showcase the Gallus Labelfire 340! The customers really enjoyed seeing the latest digital printing technology and learning how it’s raising the bar in label printing with best-in-class 1200 dpi image quality, digital white, color enhanced cold foil, variable printing and much more!

Watch this video to learn more about HUB Labels and our Labelfire at Heildelberg Connect.

Hub celebrates business with Perdue Farms

Representatives from Perdue Farms and Hub Labels gathered Wednesday for a ribbon-cutting ceremony celebrating their new business relationship. Written by Katiann Marshall, Originally Published:

Hub Labels of Hagerstown celebrated the addition of a new press Wednesday morning due to its new business with Perdue Farms.

Thomas Dahbura, president of Hub Labels, said the relationship between the company, a custom manufacturer of pressure-sensitive and linerless labels, and Perdue is part of its new business strategy of doing business with other Maryland companies.

“Perdue is a Maryland company and for years, we’ve wanted to do business with Perdue and this opportunity allows us to,” Dahbura said.

Hub Labels’ 110,000-square-foot facility is off Shawley Drive in Hagerstown.

Perdue Farms is the parent company of Perdue Foods and Perdue AgriBusiness, based in Salisbury, Maryland. Perdue Foods is a major chicken, turkey and pork processing company in the United States.

This launch from Hub Labels is known as the “Made in Maryland” campaign.

“Maryland businesses doing business with other Maryland businesses,” Dahbura said. “There’s a sense of pride about being a Maryland company. So instead of buying something from Indiana or Texas, why not do business locally.”

Linerless labels are pressure-sensitive labels that do not have a liner or backing paper. The labels are wound on a roll that has had a release coating applied to the front of the face stock to prevent the adhesive from sticking on the label below.

This technology is a new project for Perdue, according to Dahbura.

“It’s new packaging technology rollout for Perdue, so there’s a lot of cool pieces of innovation here with this. We’re using linerless labels and Perdue is using this technology called vacuum seal, vacuum pack. That preserves the product for a longer period of time. The only way to decorate it is by using linerless labels,” Dahbura said.

Hub Labels is one of two companies in the U.S. that produces linerless labels and was the first company in the country to use that technology, according to Dahbura. He said he is happy to see the new technology starting to take off.

“It has started to come to fruition. You’ve got companies like Perdue using it … a lot of fish companies, Blue Apron. … A lot of companies are starting to adopt it,” Dahbura said. “When you get a company like Perdue to adopt this technology, it’s legitimizing the technology. It’s mainstream now. It has taken us about seven years to line this sort of business up because not a lot of people knew about it.”

Dahbura said the partnership between his company and Perdue will allow Hub Labels to add additional presses.

“When we talked to Perdue about their growth strategy, they are looking at expanding this product line, expanding the use of linerless, so this is going to be one of three presses that we are able to justify the investment in because of Perdue,” Dahbura said.

Hub Labels, Inc. Wins Three Awards at Annual TLMI Competition  

Hub Labels, a custom manufacturer of pressure sensitive labels in Hagerstown, Maryland was recently presented with three awards from The Annual TLMI Competition held in Scottsdale, AZ. Hub Labels was recognized with the 2017 Environmental Leadership Award and two digital print awards.

The 2017 Environmental Leadership Award recognizes both a converter and a supplier member each year that consistently demonstrates a commitment to progressive environmental practices across a range of areas. These areas include solid waste reduction, recycling, waste or energy recovery, the implementation of new ‘clean’ technology and/or processes, and the implementation of an education program.
Hub Labels became Project L.I.F.E. certified in 2012 through TLMI and have been committed to finding cost effective ways to help reduce their environmental footprint since. As a result of the certification process, Hub Labels created a Project L.I.F.E. team that is charged with managing as well as implementing environmental projects and efforts. Hub Labels has since effectively targeted and reduced waste, water usage and vehicle gas emissions.

Hub Labels utilizes every employee in the organization to help work towards a more sustainable environmentally friendly company. Through Project L.I.F.E. and LEAN Manufacturing practices they strive to be an environmentally-friendly leader in the industry. They do this by believing that “We Think Differently” is more than just a motto, it is a way of life that their employees are committed to everyday.
In addition, to winning the Environmental Leadership Award at the 2017 TLMI Annual Meeting, Hub Labels was also presented with two label awards. They received a 1st place award in the Wine and Spirits category for Digital Printing/Ink Jet. The second award was 1st place in Digital Printing/Ink Jet – Color Process Prime. Both of these awards aim to recognize innovative printing and technical achievement. The competition recognizes and honors the finest efforts of their converter members throughout the previous 12-month period. ‘As an active leader in the industry, we are very excited to be recognized for our printing capabilities,’ said Thomas Dahbura, President of Hub Labels. ‘I am extremely proud of how well our team works together to produce our high-quality products, we wouldn’t be where we are today without each of our dedicated team members.  

2017 TLMI Annual Awards Competition

We are proud 1st place winners of the 2017 Annual TLMI Awards Competition! We placed 1st in the Wine & Spirits category and the digital printing category with our submissions from Coyote Moon and Grimm Ales.

The TLMI Annual Awards Competition aims to stimulate innovative printing and to recognize technical achievement in all areas of the narrow web industry, including tags and labels, cartons, flexible packaging, non-woven pressure-sensitives and more. The competition recognizes and honors the finest efforts of converter members throughout the previous12-month period.

TLMI Environmental Leadership Award

October 10, 2017, Hub Labels Inc. was presented with the TLMI Environmental Leadership at the 2017 Annual Meeting held in Scottsdale, AZ. This award recognizes both a converter and a supplier member each year that consistently demonstrates a commitment to progressive environmental practices across a range of areas. These areas include pollution prevention, environmental leadership, tangible benefits, relevance to others, and commitment to industry & TLMI environmental initiatives.

Gallus Labelfire Delivery!


We are excited to announce the arrival of the Gallus Labelfire DCS 340 Digital/Flexo Hybrid Press, which will be operational in March of this year. This is the second press in the U.S. and tenth worldwide, combining the latest in digital printing technology with the additional benefits of conventional printing.
On the digital side, it comes with the latest inkjet technology with 7+ colors and 1200 dpi resolution (best available in our industry), plus three flexo conventional print units. This new digital press is geared towards shorter runs and also has the ability for variable text and image personalization. The Gallus Labelfire will complement our full service, one-stop solution to existing customers as well as nurturing new customers, especially in the craft beer/spirits and food markets, where private branding and specialization are critical to their success. We are extremely excited to offer this new technology to our customers to help them grow their brand.
Check out the video for more information!
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gsRkDOTXyVU

When Work Works Nomination


Hub Labels has been selected as a finalist for the 2016-2017 When Work Works Award. When Work Works (WWW), is a research-based initiative, which highlights how effective and flexible workplaces can yield positive business results and help employees succeed at work and at home.
The award is unique for its rigorous criteria. To win, applicants must rank among the top 20% of U.S. employers in terms of their programs and practices for creating effective and flexible workplaces, based on nationally representative data from Families and Work Institute. Hub Labels has passed the first stage of the application process by scoring in the top 20% of employers nationally.
Also, two thirds of the overall score is derived from a confidential employee survey, ensuring that these programs and practices are having a real impact where the “rubber meets the road” on the employee experience. The survey needs to be completed by at least 40% of the company’s employees. The winners of the award will be announced in the upcoming weeks, wish us luck!