By Maria Hoffman
Newhouse, Lanarkshire-based Insignia Technologies will be launching their color-changing labels in the UK with the purpose of decreasing food waste and boosting food safety.
Their first product that is set to launch this Spring, is called the Novas Embedded Label, which is integrated into the food packaging film. When the package is opened the color-changing label is triggered due to the exposure to carbon dioxide. With the timer activated, this shows the consumer how long the package has been opened.
“Our color-changing labels will give a clear indication as to how long the packet has been opened and if it’s still fit for consumption,” said Stephen Currie, chief operating officer of Insignia Technologies.
But will these new labels impact the cost on the food product? – The answer is yes, but not by much. “We are proposing an additional 3 to 4 (US) cents per pack,” said Currie. “We feel that this is an extremely good value given the functionality the label will provide.”
Initially, the Novas Embedded Label will be sold to the existing supply chain and will be launched through one of the leading UK supermarkets.
“We will be adding innovation to the already established supply chain and incorporating the label into the finished pack,” said Currie. “From a shopper point of view, there’s nothing different other than extra functionality on their packaging.”
After Insignia Technologies initial launch phase, standalone color-changing labels will more than likely be supplied by supermarkets, which consumers can use at home.
Future Plans for the US Market
Once Insignia Technologies complete their launch phase within the UK market, the US will be its next priority.
“We’ve been over to America three times in the past year and have started to build solid relationships with several of the leading retailers as well as a few of the branded food manufacturers,” said Currie. “We are very keen to further develop additional relationships with key players within the American food industry.”
Currie encountered a different dynamic within the American food market: cooked meat seems to last longer in the US than it does in the UK due to the size of the market in America.
“Certain preservatives have to be added to the food so that it retains its life throughout the supply chain, but the UK being a much smaller place, we don’t use those preservatives to the same extent,” Currie stated. “The impact for us is that we have to adapt our products to the specific markets we’re launching in and we have the capability to do that.”
Insignia Technologies has plans to roll out their products to the rest of the UK market, then will be focusing in on the US, Germany and France.