Mylar Bag Labeling Machines | InkJet Product Spotlight

In recent years, the world of flexible packaging has exploded in popularity across a range of industries. Sustainable, eye-catching, and capable of extending product shelf lives, flexible packaging is widely used to house food products, beverages, pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, and more. Today, one of the most popular forms of flexible packaging is the mylar bag. 

Mylar bags are constructed from a material called BoPET, short for Biaxially-oriented polyethylene terephthalate. BoPET is a type of polyester film that is produced by stretching heated PET (polyethylene terephthalate) resin. The main reason mylar bags are so popular is that they are capable of preserving products for extended periods of time thanks to their thick outer layers of foil laminate. 

This thick laminate layer protects the bag’s contents from exposure to moisture, light, and oxygen transmissions, allowing the product to last longer than average. Naturally, these properties make mylar bags a natural fit for the food packaging industry and pharmaceutical developers. But of course, these industries are also subject to strict traceability standards and date coding requirements. If a company doesn’t label its bags with the required information and codes, there can be costly consequences. 

Fortunately, it isn’t difficult to achieve code compliance when you have a well-built mylar bag labeling machine on your production line. If you use mylar bags in your operation, here’s how you can ensure that they’re outfitted with the necessary markings:

The Importance of a Quality Mylar Bag Labeling Machine

Whether your operation is using mylar bags to house medicine, snacks, beverages, or other types of consumer goods, it’s essential to mark the bag according to state/federal laws and distributor policies. Although these requirements naturally vary based on location, industry, and contract details, packaging companies across the board often must place the following markings on their products to achieve code compliance:

  • Title and location of the manufacturer
  • Statement of product identity
  • Net quantity of the contained product
  • Barcode
  • Expiration date
  • Product batch code

While information like manufacturer title/location is often pre-printed on the mylar bag, variable data markings like date codes and product batch codes change so often that they can’t come pre-printed. 

To apply these markings, companies need to install coding hardware on their production lines. Some of the most common coding technologies used today include continuous inkjet printers (CIJ), thermal inkjet printers (TIJ), and thermal transfer overprinters (TTO). See the table below to compare these machines:



Continuous Inkjet Printers

Thermal Inkjet Printers

  • Lightweight and highly portable
  • Available at accessible upfront costs (model dependent)
  • Capable of producing codes at high DPI resolutions (generally up to 600 x 600 DPI)
  • Can print at speeds ranging from 120 m/min (Anser Pro-S) to 300m/min (Anser X1)





Thermal Transfer Overprinter

  • Can create long-lasting, durable markings
  • Capable of producing vibrant images (up to 300 DPI)
  • Ideal for producing text-heavy passages on plastic substrates

Which Mylar Bag Labeling Machine Is Right for Your Needs?

Although looking at hardware specs can help give you an idea of what machine will work for your operation, there are a lot of other factors to consider when using a mylar bag labeling machine. For example, you need to think about:

  • Where the machine will fit in your existing line operation
  • What information needs to be printed on the bag
  • Where the information will be placed on the bag
  • Whether the bag will be premade or form-fill sealed

Broadly speaking, if you need to mark the front face of your package, a thermal transfer overprinter will be your best choice. TTO systems can produce graphic-like images and highly legible text information on mylar material. For these reasons, TTO is the go-to technology for items like frozen food bags and meat products.

Conversely, CIJ printers excel in situations where operators need to print low-resolution text codes on fast-moving bags. Typically, CIJ printers will be used to mark premade bags because they are well-suited for marking curved surfaces. However, it’s essential to be diligent about both printhead positioning and ink choice in these cases. If the printhead is angled poorly, the code is likely to appear unreadable. Similarly, certain inks won’t be able to adhere to the mylar substrate. 

In general, TIJ printers will work well in the same contexts as CIJ printers. It’s important to note, however, that while TIJ printers often print more slowly than CIJ machines, they are capable of making higher DPI images and codes. TIJ printers also work in some instances where TTO or CIJ printers are a fit—they can be mounted to the brackets that are used traditionally for TTOs. 

Accordingly, TIJ and CIJ printers are often chosen for very different reasons. For these reasons, we recommend speaking at length with an expert before investing in a mylar bag labeling machine.

Ready To Find a Mylar Bag Labeling Machine for Your Company? Contact InkJet, Inc. Today

In today’s world of complex supply chains and wide distribution networks, full product traceability is key. As such, packaging companies are tasked with ensuring that their products are outfitted with traceable codes and informative markings. If you’re unsure of the best way to apply this information to your products, InkJet, Inc. is here to help. 

Offering durable CIJ printers, innovative TIJ solutions, and a range of printing consumables for TTO machines, InkJet, Inc. has the products and expertise necessary to guide you to marking success. Contact us today to learn more. 


For more information on industrial inkjet printers, inks, software, and label applicators, contact InkJet, Inc. online or by phone at 1(800) 280-3245.