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Marking & Labeling Systems - Label Adoption

What is a Label Adoption?

The label adoption process allows label printers and converters to gain fast market access, greater product acceptance, faster return on investment, and to quickly demonstrate that their labels have been evaluated to meet UL safety requirements.  The label adoption process is the most convenient option for printers and converters to establish UL Recognition indicating that their labels meet the requirements of UL's Marking & Labeling Systems Program

The label adoption process is designed for label printers and converters who use Recognized label materials.  Customers who use (adopt) Recognized label materials (e.g. label stocks, laminating adhesives, overlaminations) can receive the benefit of the Recognition established for the label material when establishing Recognition for their printed labels made from those materials. The Conditions of Acceptability of the materials used, as indicated on the Online Certifications Directory, are passed along to the label converter. This reduces the cost and time to market of the Recognized label by eliminating redundant testing and reduces follow-up service costs.

UL has significantly revised its pricing schedule to make label adoptions and additional evaluation testing (e.g. print testing, application surface testing) more affordable to provide a much quicker return on investment for customers who wish to use the label adoption process. 

How to Submit to UL:

Once you have defined the label construction you want to submit to UL, contact Customer Service (IMDQuotes@us.ul.com) to request a quote or complete the online Request for Quote form.  UL also recommends completing a submission form for the desired products. A detailed flow chart of the Submittal Process is available here.

Printing Inks:

Printed labels made from Recognized label materials are not automatically considered Recognized printed labels. To establish Recognition for a printed label, the label converter/printer must submit the complete printed label system for evaluation. Depending on several factors such as the Conditions of Acceptability desired for the label and the label materials used, testing of representative samples usually is necessary.

Some label material manufacturers have submitted their materials to UL with printing to determine the compatibility of specific flexographic, screen printing, etc. inks with their label materials. The benefit of such print testing can be passed along to the label printer during the initial label certification if so requested. The list of inks that have been evaluated with specific label materials, and the ink colors that have met UL requirements, are not published on UL's website.  Therefore, the label printer must work with the label material supplier to determine which inks, if any, and ink colors have been previously investigated and found compatible with their label materials.  Converters who wish to adopt a label stock that has been evaluated with several inks that have different color limitations are encouraged to contact UL to discuss options.

Additional Resources:

UL is ready to help you with the label adoption process.  Customer Service advisors are available world-wide to answer questions, provide information, and assist you before and during the product submittal process.  A free thirty minute "UL 101: Getting the UL Mark" webinar is available through UL Knowledge Services that addresses the most common questions customers ask when submitting their product to obtain the UL Mark.

Label printers who also wish to reproduce and distribute the UL Certification Mark for customers, must be part of the Authorized Label Supplier Program.

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