Swedish printing company Rotakett has won a national label contest arranged by the local label association, with its entry for Pernod Ricard Nordic’s Aalborg Jule Akvavit. The label, printed on labelstock from UPM Raflatac, was chosen to represent Sweden in FINAT’s international label competition.
“Because this involved a very exclusive label, very high demands were placed on the material,” explains Jim Bågesjö, Head of Sales at Rotakett. “We tested various suppliers and were happiest with UPM Raflatac.”
The label was printed on FSC-certified Castgloss WSA paper. The printing techniques used to create the label include UV flexo, screen, cold foil and embossing.
“A high-gloss stock is needed to ensure a thoroughly even black colour on the label. The embossing also placed high demands on material quality, as did the application of gold foil,” says Bågesjö.
Lisa Lindén, Package Developer at Pernod Ricard Nordic, explains that Aalborg Jule Akvavit celebrated its 30th anniversary last year. The product concept includes changing the both the bottle’s shape and its label every three years. For the 30th anniversary, a premium look was decided on for both the bottle and the label. A black colour and matt surface that accentuates a premium experience were chosen.
“The label plays an extremely important role for our products. It has to be an eye-catcher that attracts the viewer, and it’s an important part of the overall impression when customers are in stores making their decisions,” says Lindén.
Three parties in collaboration
Pernod Ricard’s labels are designed in close collaboration with various design agencies. The award-winning label was designed in cooperation with Danish design agency Loop Associates.
“Aalborg Jule Akvavit has a long history with the Danes. We wanted to work with an agency that understands the product’s value,” says Lindén.
Of the many factors considered when designing a label, she says, “The shape of the bottle sets limitations, as does the production process. The choice between wet glue and self-adhesive labels also determines a different set of possibilities.”
The package developers, label designers and printer work collaboratively.
“As a package developer, I act as the link between the printer and the design agency,” explains Lindén. “The designer often doesn’t have a technical knowledge of all the available options. I have some knowledge of the printer’s possibilities and limitations, but I also know which possibilities and limitations we have regarding our own production department and on our own production lines.”
As in other fields, new technologies and possibilities are under continuous development in the package industry.
“There are many different trends in printing; everything from special effects to more minimalist designs, where the seemingly simple becomes a winning concept. I think the JULE label is a combination of these. For inspiration we take a look at other industries,” explains Lindén.
Also now of high importance is good environmental choice.
“Here at Pernod Ricard Nordic we stick to our eco-handbook, which acts as our ‘environmental Bible’. We comply with it as closely as we can when choosing designs. It’s all about the best way to choose methods and inks that have the lowest possible environmental impact. Naturally, our suppliers are completely in tune with using the most environmentally friendly products on the market.”