Clear codes on gin and whisky bottles

Wednesday, 29 August, 2018 | Supplied by: Linx Printing Technologies


Bruichladdich Distillery has reduced downtime on its whisky and gin lines with two laser coders from Linx Printing Technologies.

Based on the Isle of Islay, Bruichladdich installed the first Linx CSL30 laser coder on its Botanist gin production line last year, and following positive results, another has been installed on its malt whisky line.

“We installed our first Linx CSL30 during a period which saw a 47% growth in our Botanist sales in the previous year,” explained Jonathan Carmichael, Bottling Hall Manager at Bruichladdich. “In order to adapt and keep up with this unprecedented demand, we took the opportunity to reconfigure our line in another warehouse, adding some new machinery — and the Linx CSL30 was an extremely important addition to our line.”

Installed in the bottle labeller, the CSL30 codes two lines, 5 mm in height, onto the bottom of the glass gin bottles. The codes comprise a line number and a batch code, including a unique bottle number and the bottle’s production date and time. Running at 2100 bottles/hour for nine hours per day, the line produces 1.2 million bottles per year.

The laser coder can apply codes from a wide range of distances and on a variety of colours. Despite the fact the laser head sits further away from its gin bottles and many of its whisky bottles are black, it produces a visible code for Bruichladdich.

The codes are clear and always appear in the same position on the bottle, which is key due to the premium nature of Bruichladdich's products.

Another benefit of using laser coders is that it removes the need for printhead cleaning and maintenance, which ensures minimal downtime.

“As a producer of premium spirits, it’s vitally important that the codes on our bottles are clear and sharp and in keeping with the brand’s expectations,” said Carmichael. “Another key factor in the decision to install a laser coder was the low maintenance required, meaning less downtime in production. For these reasons we’ve not hesitated to install a CSL30 on our whisky line as well.”

Bruichladdich was founded in 1881 and reopened as a progressive distiller in 2001. Its whisky is distilled using much of the original Victorian machinery, and it has recently expanded into gin under the brand name The Botanist.

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