That Hungry Chef
Pratap Chahal founded his company, That Hungry Chef, in 2013 to bring a new range of food products to the market. With a background in cooking in Michelin-starred restaurants, he wanted to build on his Indian heritage to introduce a range of specialist sauces and dips to the UK food market.
“Labels were not the first thing I thought about when I decided to become a high-quality specialist food manufacturer, but I quickly realised that they are vital to explain visually what my products are all about,” explained Pratap.
“Accurate colour printing, clear descriptions, and barcodes were all part of what I needed. Having agreed my brand image and product range, I found suppliers who could produce the packaging and labelling I required.”
“What I hadn’t realised, is that all label suppliers are not the same. We are, at the moment, a small company, with a product range that is changing and growing, and ideally we need suppliers that can easily handle short and long production runs. Axicon is brilliant when it comes to making new and revised labels and we can call off the labels we need at the right time for us.”
With a range of products sold individually or in sets of three sold in small window gift packs, That Hungry Chef uses labels for the lids, the jars themselves, and for the cardboard packaging. They also include barcodes for use at the point of sale. With a range of customers varying from specialist food shops and delicatessens to Selfridges, Pratap relies upon perfect packaging to market his products and grow his company.
“Using Axicon means that our labelling costs have been reduced by over 50%, with even better quality labels, and our packaging is now as good as the products themselves. We are delighted, and just as importantly, so are our customers. We can meet changing demand more easily, and the labels are supplied exactly as we need them for either machine or hand labelling,” added Pratap.
Margaret Hall is a family owned and run craft bakery, based in Warwick, which specialises in handmade cakes, tartlets and biscuits for a wide customer base. The firm began in 1963 as a retailer of high quality bread and cakes, and had 14 shops in the Midlands before deciding to concentrate solely on manufacturing after 1998.
With a wide range of artisan confectionery products, supplied either in an ambient or frozen format, Margaret Hall supplies to a wide variety of national customers from their BRC A-grade bakery, and of course clear and attractive labelling is essential.
“We supply over 80 lines,” explained Jonathan Walsh, managing director of Margaret Hall, “using a combination of colour and black and white labels. We had been using a mixture of outsourced labels and labels printed in-house, but we were interested to find out if a specialist label company could offer us any improvements.”
“Axicon Labels has exceeded our expectations, as we thought we were already pretty good at labelling, after doing it for over 50 years. We now realise that baking is our specialist subject, while Axicon’s is labelling and barcoding.”
Adam Carey of Axicon Labels realised that the balance of in-house and outsourced label production could be changed, and that by using digital and flexographic printing options Margaret Hall could be given more flexible options. “By changing how the labels are sourced and over-printed at Margaret Hall, we have freed up a member of staff for additional sales and marketing tasks, and made the process of printing date labels more straightforward. We have also improved the ease of scanning barcodes on some labels, helped meet the latest EU 1169 food information regulations, and are here to help with any unusual requirements”.
Axicon Labels has configured an in-house standalone printer to work from barcoded instructions so that no mistakes can be made when matching the product with the correct label. The labels cannot be altered accidentally so they always conform to both legal and customers’ requirements. Any barcodes required on labels are verified to ensure they comply with international ISO/IEC standards, and never cause a problem in the supply chain.
“The advice on how to re-plan our label production, and use our in-house equipment more efficiently alongside Axicon printed stock has been a major help,” added Jonathan Walsh. “We no longer spend much time thinking about labelling and this gives us even more time to focus on the products we produce.”
“If you are considering a review of the barcoding and labelling within your business, I would highly recommend Adam and the team at Axicon Labels.”
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