After successfully refining and tinkering with wine making or brewing as a hobby, (and many tastings later), many passionate amateur vintners and home brewers are taking their beverages to market. Surprisingly, one of the biggest challenges boutique wine businesses must deal with is the labelling of their wine bottles. Many of them have to outsource the labelling to other companies, and this often comes at a high cost.
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In this story about how the Tumut River Co guys grew their fledgling business from the tiniest brewery in the southern hemisphere to a significant part of the Tumut River township and even a tourist destination. Finding the right solution for their labelling was a significant turning point.
The Tumut River Co made use of the innovative print and apply solution from Great Engineering, an Australian-based company that makes bottle label applicators and Epson Printers. With this set-up, boutique wine businesses can now print and apply high-quality labels onto their bottles themselves, reducing costs and increasing their ability to respond to the market.
If you are looking to expand your boutique business to the market, here’s what you need to know about the innovative bottle labelling equipment from Great Engineering.
Types of bottle label applicators
Great Engineering sells bottle label applicators under the “Bench” brand. There are both manual and electrical label applicators, and winery owners can select models of bottle label applicators based on their production capacities or their personal preferences. The various models of bottle label applicators include:
The BenchMATE label applicator- This is a manually operated entry-level label applicator. It’s very easy to set up and its operation is straightforward. With this applicator, you can apply labels to wine bottles up to ten times faster than if you do it by hand. It’s perfect for a small wine business that is just getting off the ground. This label applicator comes in 2 different models: the BenchMATE and BenchMATE+ (the latter can apply labels to tiny bottles as well, but as far as standard wine bottles are concerned, both applicators will do just fine).
The BenchMARK label applicator- This is an electrical entry-level label applicator. You can use the interface on this applicator to dial in the length of each label; this increases the accuracy of the applicator, so your wine bottle labels will always be perfectly aligned. This labelling machine comes with a 5-year warranty, so you will be well covered.
The BenchMAX and BenchDELUXE label applicators- These are top-of-the-line bottle labelling machines that are more suitable for growing boutique wine businesses or full-fledged wineries. They can label up to a million bottles of wine every year.
So which type of bottle label applicator should you get? Well, you should go with the one that matches your current production capacity. In case you increase your capacity as your wine-making business grows, Great Engineering has a great offer for you; you can trade in your label applicator for a discount on a more advanced model.
Bottle label applicator with label printer integration
Great Engineering partnered with Epson to come up with an innovative design that allows boutique wine businesses to print and apply labels on their wine bottles at the same time. The labelling machines are fully integrated with Epson label printers, and the two can be combined in such a way that freshly printed labels coming out of the printer are feed into the label applicator and then applied to the bottles straight away. This innovation gives boutique wine businesses a number of advantages. For starters, business owners can print the labels on demand, which means that they don’t have to spend a lot of money pre-ordering and stockpiling labels. Secondly, wine businesses are now able to make adjustments to the design of their labels whenever they need to; this level of flexibility and responsiveness allows winemakers to adjust promptly to any changes in the market, and this makes their products more competitive.
Epson printers that can make wine bottle labels
There are 3 Epson label printers that you can use alongside your label applicator; The Epson ColorWorks® C3500, C7500, and C7500G. The C3500 is the entry-level model, and it’s an inkjet printer that can produce high-quality full-colour labels. It has a daily output of 2000 labels. The C7500 can print all types of product labels, although Epson specifically created it for use in microbreweries and wineries. The C7500G is unique because it can print full-colour labels with glossy finishes. It also has a very high capacity, so it can be used in larger wineries. If you want to be able to print and apply your own wine bottle labels, you’ll have to purchase one of these printers and set it up together with your applicator.