Talking wine labeling with All4Labels' Ayhan Uslu

Ahead of Labelexpo Europe 2023, Uslu shares expertise on wine labeling technology, tackling counterfeiting and the future of brand protection

Wine labeling with All4Labels' Ayhan Uslu

Wine labeling with All4Labels' Ayhan Uslu

Ahead of his Labelexpo Europe 2023 wine labeling technology master class session, L&L caught up with Ayhan Uslu, incoming sales director for Smart and Secure at All4Labels. Here, he reveals what he’ll be covering.

L&L: Hello Ayhan, can you tell us a bit about your role at All4Labels, particularly when it comes to brand protection?

In the context of a company like All4Labels, which is a global leader in label solutions, brand protection becomes crucial. All4Labels offers a range of security features and technologies embedded in their labels to help clients protect their products and brands from counterfeiters and unauthorized distribution. These security features might include unique identification codes, holograms, tamper-evident seals and other anti-counterfeiting measures.

Additionally, All4Labels can provide clients with brand monitoring services to detect and combat instances of brand infringement online and offline. This could involve tracking websites, social media platforms, marketplaces, and other channels for counterfeit products or unauthorized usage of their clients' brands.

In my position at Smart and Secure, I take on a key leadership role within a dynamic corporate setting, enabling me to efficiently lead and motivate sales managers as well as operational managers. Leveraging my profound comprehension of sales challenges and operational complexities, I guide my team with a well-defined vision and strategic focus.

L&L: It’s great to have you join us at the Label Academy-hosted master class dedicated to wine labeling technology. Tell us a bit about what you will be presenting in your session.

I am planning to give you an overview about:

1. Smart Labelling Solutions: Smart labels, equipped with technologies like RFID and NFC, offer exciting possibilities for the wine industry. I would delve into the potential benefits of using smart labels for inventory management, anti-counterfeiting measures, and enhancing consumer engagement through interactive experiences.

2. Anti-Counterfeiting Solutions: Counterfeit wines pose a significant threat to wine brands. Converters can develop innovative packaging solutions that incorporate anti-counterfeiting features like holographic labels, QR codes, RFID tags, or tamper-evident seals to help consumers and authorities verify the authenticity of the product easily.

3. To be determined.

L&L: Counterfeiting in wine is something we are increasingly hearing about. How big is the scale of the challenge for the industry, and can you give any examples from your own experience as a major label converter working with wine brands?

Counterfeiting in the wine industry is indeed a significant challenge and has been a growing concern for wine producers and consumers alike. The scale of the problem can be quite substantial, and it impacts both high-end luxury wines and more affordable ones. Counterfeiters attempt to imitate popular and prestigious wine brands, making it difficult for consumers to distinguish between authentic and fake products.

The challenges posed by counterfeiting in the wine industry include:

1. Reputation: Counterfeit wines can damage the reputation of established wine brands, affecting consumer trust and loyalty.

2. Lost revenue: Counterfeiting can result in financial losses for wine producers as sales and revenue are diverted to counterfeit products.

3. Quality and safety concerns: Counterfeit wines might not meet the quality and safety standards of genuine products, potentially posing health risks to consumers.

4. Legal and regulatory issues: Dealing with counterfeit products involves legal complexities and may require significant resources to combat.

As a major label converter working with wine brands, companies like All4Labels may play a critical role in assisting wine producers in their brand protection efforts. They may offer various security features to integrate into wine labels, helping to deter counterfeiters and allowing consumers to verify product authenticity. Some of these features may include holographic elements, unique serialization, QR codes, or other anti-counterfeiting technologies.

By using these security measures, wine brands can enhance their product's traceability and build trust with consumers. Additionally, label converters may also collaborate with their clients to develop custom-designed labels that are harder to replicate, further discouraging counterfeiters.

It's important to note that the battle against counterfeiting requires a multi-pronged approach involving collaboration between wine producers, labeling companies, regulatory authorities, and technology experts. Continual advancements in anti-counterfeiting technologies and increased awareness among consumers are essential to mitigate the impact of counterfeiting in the wine industry.

L&L: In what ways do you think advancements in wine labeling and packaging technology have helped tackle wine counterfeiting? How might further advancements such as AI, AR, and smart labels help protect wine brands in the next five years?

Advancements in wine labeling and packaging technology have played a crucial role in tackling wine counterfeiting by incorporating various security features and innovations that make it more challenging for counterfeiters to replicate or tamper with wine labels. Some ways these advancements have helped combat counterfeiting include:

1. Anti-counterfeiting features: Modern labeling technologies offer a wide range of anti-counterfeiting features, such as holographic foils, specialty inks, micro printing, and hidden security codes. These features are difficult for counterfeiters to replicate, making it easier for consumers and authorities to identify genuine products.

2. Serialization and track-and-trace systems: Wine producers can use unique serialization codes on labels to create a track-and-trace system. This system allows products to be traced throughout the supply chain, from production to distribution, making it easier to detect and prevent the circulation of counterfeit products.

3. QR codes and NFC technology: Labels with QR codes or Near Field Communication (NFC) chips can be scanned using smartphones to verify the authenticity of the wine. Consumers can access information about the wine's origin, production, and other details, helping them to distinguish genuine products from counterfeits.

4. Tamper-evident seals: Packaging technologies now include tamper-evident seals, which provide visible evidence if a wine bottle has been opened or tampered with. This enhances consumer confidence and prevents the refilling of genuine bottles with counterfeit wine.

5. Holographic labels and foils: Holographic labels and foils are visually striking and challenging to replicate, making them an effective deterrent against counterfeiters.

6. Smart packaging solutions: Innovative packaging technologies may include temperature-sensitive labels that change color if the wine has been exposed to adverse conditions during transportation or storage. This helps ensure the product's quality and authenticity.

7. Online authentication systems: Wine producers can implement online authentication systems that allow consumers to verify the authenticity of their purchased products by entering unique codes on a website or mobile app.

8. Blockchain technology: Some companies are exploring the use of blockchain technology to create an immutable record of the wine's journey, from vineyard to bottle. This technology ensures transparency and helps prevent the creation of counterfeit products within the supply chain.

By adopting these advancements in wine labeling and packaging technology, wine producers can significantly reduce the risk of counterfeiting, protect their brand reputation, and provide consumers with greater confidence in the authenticity and quality of their products. Additionally, these technologies also enable better supply chain management and product verification, helping the industry as a whole tackle the global issue of wine counterfeiting.

L&L: Where do you think are the main wine brand protection growth areas for converters?

1. Anti-counterfeiting solutions

2. Sustainable packaging

3. Smart packaging

4. Innovative design and labeling

5. Supply chain transparency

L&L: What single piece of advice would you give to converters considering moving into wine labeling?

In the case converters are considering moving into wine labeling, my single piece of advice would be to prioritize quality and attention to detail. Wine labels play a crucial role in establishing a brand's identity, communicating product information, and influencing consumer purchasing decisions. The wine industry often values aesthetics, elegance, and craftsmanship and labels can significantly impact the perception of the wine's quality.

By prioritizing quality, attention to detail, and customer-centric solutions, converters can position themselves as trusted partners in the wine labeling process and build long-term relationships with wine producers. The wine industry thrives on craftsmanship, aesthetics, and brand perception, so converters who understand and deliver on these elements are more likely to succeed in this market.

L&L: What are you most looking forward to seeing at Labelexpo Europe 2023?

Personally, I am most looking forward to meeting good old friends, industry and innovation drivers to develop existing and new ideas. Additionally, I am looking forward to gaining new insights in:

1. New labeling technologies

2. Sustainable labeling solutions

3. Label design and branding trends

4. Networking opportunities

Labelexpo Europe is an excellent platform for networking with industry peers, potential customers, and technology providers. Attendees might look forward to connecting with like-minded professionals and forging new partnerships.

Hear Ayhan present “Brand protection for wine labels” from 1:05 to 1:30 pm on September 14. For the full program, click here.

Helen Stoddart - Labelexpo conference manager

Helen Stoddart

  • Labelexpo conference manager