There is a difference in the printing and packaging world when it comes to products. While a limited number of manufacturers still choose to produce, print, and package their product from production to the point of delivery, many brand owners use contract packaging to cut costs in order to invest their capital in further R&D, branding, marketing, and new products.
Contract packagers are manufacturer operations that are set up to run for other brand owners and sometimes for their own brand as well. For example, a big box store will typically use a contract packager to produce any number of their products. Let’s say it’s window cleaner under the brand owner’s name, but the entire production, packaging, and logistical points are served by a contract packager. This approach saves the brand owner selling multiple products time, energy, capital, facility investment, and other resources that they can invest elsewhere in their company.
Contract packagers still have to meet rigorous proprietary, safety, and government regulations in addition to brand owner oversight just as if they were the brand owner manufacturing and producing the product directly
. At certain times the brand owner has clear expectations and wants things done a certain way. Other times the contract packager is free to make decisions and demands of the label or printing company with a great deal of freedom on behalf of the brand. Navigating the difference requires an experienced printing, packaging, and label company. Contract packagers may say the brand owner always makes the decision but that is not always the case.
If you are talking to a brand owner who may not have the expertise for the size of the rolls the applicators can handle, how the labels need to be packaged or the film needs to be labeled. The contract packer is going to be more familiar with any special labeling and ensure that it is applied to the right product.
There are several considerations the brand owner must make when using a contract packager. Are they experienced? Are they ISO certified and require a significant amount of paperwork for each shipment because they understand the universal shipping and certification requirements and goals? Do the labels need eye marks for the specific application?
When are labels required to be at the manufacturer? Is the contract packager able to deliver on time per the brand owner’s demands? If you want labels applied the best possible way and you are a brand owner you need to facilitate the communication between the label products and contract packager. You don’t want to get caught trying to protect your packager, instead, look at your label provider as a partnership between the three of you to ensure you get the best-looking product you can.
The brand owner and contract packager need to be in partnership with the label provider to ensure a smooth transition as the product progresses through each step.
Century Printing & Packaging has been helping brands and contract packagers produce labels and packaging that stand out from the competition for years. We understand what it means to make a first impression. At Century Printing and Packaging we design and print labels that stick and stand out!
Ben Waldrop, President
Greer, SC 29651