Doc’s Tea Prints On-Demand With Their Kiaro! Label Printer

Doc’s Tea is a handcrafted, small-batch beverage brewed by a family of dental health professionals dedicated to a healthy lifestyle. Recently, Dr. Ken Banks, owner of Doc’s Teas, began printing his own labels with the Kiaro! inkjet label printer in order to increase productivity, reduce cost, and dramatically improve label quality on all of their products.

“When I first saw the Kiaro! print I was amazed,” said Dr. Ken Banks, “I was impressed with the application process of the labels with our bottles and the look of the labels.”

We traveled to the home of Doc’s Tea, Inwood, West Virginia, to document how the maker of healthy, low-sugar, bottled sweet teas has increased their production speed, reduced their costs, and enhanced the look of their labels by using a Kiaro! label printer to print their own labels.

“We make our product on demand so that we can deliver a fresh product, not one that’s brewed, bottled and then stored,” said Dr. Ken Banks. Because Doc’s Tea doesn’t allow their teas to sit on shelves, they needed a solution that allowed them to print labels instantly, which eliminated the waiting time and inventory difficulties that come with ordering outside labels.

“The Kiaro! label printer fits in so well for us because it is allowing us to do small batches, to have high quality labels, not to have a large inventory,” says Dr. Ken Banks, “it allows us to brew on demand and to print on demand.”

See for yourself! 

Doc’s Tea, and countless others, have found that printing labels on-demand and in house just makes sense. Schedule a demonstration of a Kiaro! label printer with one of our regional sales managers, who will take a Kiaro! to your facility, and show you what an in-house label printer can bring to your business.


EU Produced Wines Can Now Be Labeled Organic

The European Union has now officially decided on a definition for organic wine and will allow organic wine producers to identify their wines as organic, rather than the former vague “wine issued from organic grapes” label. The new terminology for the wine labels will state “Organic Wine” or “Vin Biologique.” Gwenaelle le Guillous, the director of Syndicat des Vignerons Bio D’ Aquitaine, told that these is an official logo for organic wines just like other organic products have the right to carry.

The new organic wine-making rules introduce a “technical definition” of organic wine.  One of the rules regarding organic wine is that the wine inlcudes 30-50% less added sulphur than conventional wines, also no use of additives such as sorbic acid, and a full traceability processes for organic verification.

This long awaited change to organic wines comes on the hells of the EU’s new quality charter. Wines are now deemed to be organic by practice at both the vineyards and the wine cellars. According to, a total of 3,945 vineyards in France are organic, a number that has doubled in three years and now represents 6% of France’s total vineyards. also reports that The market itself is worth €359m in France, a growth of 11% since 2010, and 90% over the past six years. Ninety-two percent of hypermarkets and supermarkets across the country sell organic wine, offering on average 12 different labels.

To learn more about the EU’s decision on officially labeling organic wine, check out their press release.

EU Organic Labeling Deadline Approaches

Did you know that putting the EU Organic Logo on organic products sold in Europe will soon be mandatory? If not, now you do! This is key information for food producers in Europe, and also for food producers here in the US who ship their organic products overseas.

The Europe-wide symbol for certified organic products, known as the “Euro Leaf,” was first introduced in 2010 as part of a broader effort to support organic farming. Since then, Europe has been in a period of transition before adoption. But come the end of June 2012, the transition period will be over and products claiming to be organic that do not bear the correct EU organic logo and associated wording will be illegal.

Some of the Rules for Organic Labeling in the EU:

  • For products to be legally marketed as organic, they must be inspected by an accredited agency
  • Officially organic products must be made of at least 95% organically produced ingredients
  • The organic label cannot be used for a product that contains GMOs
  • If products are NOT “officially organic” under EU regulation, it is illegal to use label claims such as “organic,” “bio,” “eco,” etc.

For European products to be legally approved as organic, they must be inspected by an accredited association such as the Organic Farmers and Growers (OFG). The OFG inspects and certifies organic food and farming procedures across the UK. The OFG announced this week the risks that producers will face if the choose to not comply with the new packaging and labeling requirements.

OFG certification manager, Steve Clarkson, stated, “We have been pushing this message out to our licensees and ensuring all new labels we check and approve are compliant.” Clarkson continues, “But based on the feedback we are getting, we have concerns that the deadline hasn’t reached the ears of everyone who needs to know.”

So what does this mean for producers who have neglected to get certified or have yet to hear of the deadline? Well, not much according to Clarkson, “There has been no central alert or notification from the EU or Defra, but that doesn’t provide a defense for anyone who falls foul of the regulation.”

Your Organic Labels Must be Compliant by 1 July 2012

Come July 1, 2012 any product that is pre-packaged as “organic” in a EU member state that fails to carry the correct approved EU symbol will essentially be breaking the law. For more info on the EU’s guidelines for organic labeling you can check out the EU Organic Labelling website.

If you need to make a change to your label claims as a result of this regulation, you can easily update and print your own labels with a QuickLabel printer. If you believe you comply with EU standards, click here to download a printable version of the EU organic logo.

How To Get A Certified Organic Product Label (in the USA)

Are you thinking about having your naturally-grown food or beverage products labeled as certified organic?

We get a lot of questions about organic labeling, so QuickLabel Systems put together these FAQs to explain the steps involved in getting a Certified USDA Organic label on your products.

What Does it Mean if a Product is Labeled as “Organic”?

In the United States, if a food or beverage product is labeled as “organic,” that means that the product has been grown, produced, inspected, and certified to be in compliance with the organic standards of the National Organic Program (NOP), a program of the US Department of Agriculture (USDA).

Only the USDA can authorize a company to market and label its food or beverage as organic. If a company is authorized to label a product as USDA Organic, it has met USDA National Organic Program standards including:

  • Pesticides: Foods are produced without using most conventional pesticides
  • Fertilizer: Foods are produced without using fertilizers made with synthetic ingredients or sewage sludge
  • Bioengineering and Radiation: Foods are produced without the use of bioengineering or ionizing radiation
  • Antibiotics and Growth Hormone: Organic meat, poultry, eggs,and dairy products must come from animals that are not antibiotics or growth hormones
  • Sustainable Practices: The production process must use renewable resources and conserve soil and water to enhance environmental quality for future generations

Are There Different Organic Label Statements for Different Levels of Organic?

Yes, and you must label your product with the correct organic statement.

  • 100% Organic: 100% of ingredients are organic, processing is 100% organic.  
  • Organic: 95% or more of ingredients are organic, some USDA-approved chemical additives may be used in processing.  
  • Made with Organic Ingredients: Certain ingredients are organic. This label statement is not a USDA standard labeling statement and cannot be used outside of the Ingredients Panel on the label. However, it can be made if a USDA-approved certifying agent has verified the claim that some ingredients are organic.

How Can My Company Get a Certified Organic Product Label?

Before you use the term “organic” on a product label sold in the United States, you must be given official certification and approval by the USDA.

Although the USDA sets organic standards, they do not directly certify farmers and processors. Organic Certifying Agents, who are accredited by the USDA, are responsible for the certification process.

USDA Organic Seal

You must hire an Organic Certifying Agent to verify that your production process meets USDA organic standards. Check out this list on the USDA website to find an accredited USDA organic certifying agency (PDF).

Is it OK to Use an Organic Label without USDA Approval?

No, it is not legal to market foods, beverages, or other agricultural products as “organic” if they are not USDA certified organic.You may face a fine of $11,000 if you do!

The label term “organic” is regulated, and can’t be used without official approval from the USDA and USDA Organic certification. US companies have been given large fines, up to thousands of dollars, from the USDA when organic labeling is improperly used.

Are Small Farms Exempt from USDA Organic Standards?

Yes. Farms and processors with $5,000 or less in gross income from organic sales are exempt USDA NOP standards and may label products as organic without USDA organic certification.

Can I rotate the USDA Organic Logo on My Label?

No, the USDA organic logo must be used in read direction only.

Can I Change the Color of the USDA Organic Logo on My Label?

No, the USDA Organic seal can only be represented in white, green (PMS 348), and brown (PMS 175), or in black-and-white. Many label designers wonder whether it’s OK to print the USDA Organic Seal in a different color because they want it to match their label design, but it’s important to adhere to USDA standards for use of the official organic seal. If you print your own labels, you will need a full color label printer to produce the organic logo in color, or at least a monochrome barcode label printer to produce the USDA organic logo in black and white.

What is the Marketing Value of an Organic Label?

The decision to certify and label your products as organic will involve time and cost. You may ask yourself: “will an organic label help me to sell more products to consumers?”

In an interview, we asked Curtis Johnson, General Manager of Woodstock Farms Manufacturing, whether he thought having an organic seal makes a product more marketable.

“You have to have it. It’s not a luxury these days. People really want and ask for and demand the organic certification. The actual certification on the package is a requirement, but it is also advertising, saying ‘our product is organic certified, so you know what you’re getting is good, and it’s tested,” said Johnson.

Woodstock Farms USDA Organic Flax Seed

 Mushroom farmer Eric Rose, who maintained organic standards even before applying for official USDA Organic certification, recently told the New York Times that he expected to be able to sell his produce for $1 per pound more when he gets the USDA Organic label.

Rosemary Quinn of the California Certified Organic Farmers Association (CCOF) underscored the importance of the USDA certified organic label, saying “the USDA organic seal allows for consumer trust in the organic integrity of a product. For consumers who want foods produced without pesticides or genetic engineering, the organic seal ensures this from farm to table.”

What Kind of Products Can Be Labeled with the USDA Organic Seal?

Only agricultural products that achieve organic certification can be labeled organic. This includes foods and beverages such as cheese, chocolate, cookies, juices, meats, milk, pasta, poultry, prepared sauces, soups, wines and alcoholic beverages, and more. Fiber products such as clothing, bedding, and tablecloths can also be labeled organic if they are made of organically grown natural fibers.

Personal care products and cosmetic products can only be labeled USDA Organic if they are made up of agricultural products. Otherwise, the FDA does not define the use of the term “organic” and does not regulate organic labeling for cosmetic products. Because of this, makers of personal care and cosmetics products are adopting their own voluntary, private organic standard, through the National Sanitation Foundation (NSF).

What is the Process to Get My Products Certified Organic?

You must familiarize yourself with USDA organic production requirements, and write an “organic system plan” that outlines your own production practices and verifies your compliance with USDA organic standards. Each processing plant and each company that handles your product before it is packaged must complete its own organic system plan. Then, submit your organic system plan to your certifying agent and prepare to be visited by your certifying agent for a site inspection. During your site inspection, your plan will be referenced to confirm that your actual practices following your plan.

To get an idea of how to prepare for an organic inspection, check out this preparation article from National Sustainable Agricultural Information Center.

 How Much Does Organic Certification Cost?

Certification costs vary depending on the size of your production operation and on the accredited agency you choose to use. In general, organic certification costs run between $200 – $1500.

Your costs will include an application fee, site inspection fee, and an annual certification fee. Of course, your total costs will also include any expense you must make to bring your growing and production processes into compliance with National Organic Program standards.

We asked Rosemary Quinn, marketing specialist at the California Certified  Organic Farmers Certification Service, to give us an idea of what it would cost to become certified organic with the CCOF as a certifying agent. She gave us these rules of thumb:

  • Initial Application Fee: $275.
  • Site Inspection Fee: depends on time and materials, usually less than $500.
  • Expedited Certification Service: $1,475
  • Annual Certification Fee: based on the Gross Organic Production Value, usually between $400 and $1,500 for a small farm or small processor

Are There Any Discounts Available for Organic Certification?

Yes. The USDA offers a “Cost Sharing Program” on a state by state basis that can save your business up to 75% of the costs associated with the organic certification process, not to exceed $750 per year.

Visit the USDA for more information about the USDA Organic Cost Share Program.

When Will I be Approved for Organic Labeling?

After your site inspection is complete, the USDA approval process may take anywhere from 6 to 10 weeks. Once certification is granted, you will officially receive the right to label your products with the USDA organic seal.

After you are approved, you will be responsible for putting your organic system plan into action. You must update your plan annually in order to keep your current practices consistent with USDA organic regulations.

Will My Organic Certification Expire?

No, your organic certification will not expire. You will continue to be able to use organic labels on your products until you no longer want to maintain your certification.

However, your organic certifying agency may revoke or suspend your right to label products as organic if it determines that you are not following your organic system plan or that you are out of compliance with organic standards.

If you fail to follow organic standards, you are not legally allowed to continue to use an organic statement on your label, or an organic seal or agency certification logo. If you use organic statements on your labels without the right to do so, you will face large fines from the USDA.

How Can I Get an Organic Logo on My Label?

After your organic certification is approved and you receive the right to print an USDA Organic seal on your labels, you can either buy new printed labels which feature the USDA organic seal, or you can use an in-house digital label printer to change your labels and make your own labels with the organic seal.

QuickLabel Systems offers several solutions for putting the organic logo on your label. By printing your own organic labels with a QuickLabel printer you have the ability to change your label design and print new product labels with your organic logo or certification seal, at your finger tips. You can also print private label versions of organic product labels at any time, changing the logo branding and name on the label and retaining the organic seal and statement.

More Resources About Organic Labeling:

USDA – Organic Labeling and Marketing Claims

“About Organic” – California Certified Organic Farmers

List of US Agencies That Can Certify you to Label Your Products as Organic

Link to Download the Official USDA Organic Seal

QuickLabel Digital Color Label Printers