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NAStar Provides Savings Through Sustainability

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The pressure sensitive adhesive coating company helps retailers curb costs and eliminate waste. 
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Companies are always on the lookout for ways to curb their spending and reduce their environmental footprint. NAStar Inc. can help retailers do both with its liner-free label solutions, Marketing Director John Short says.

“We’re a specialty manufacturer,” he says, noting that one of its solutions is the company’s TwoFer® Shelf Talker product, which has two unique, usable tags for marking prices on a retail shelf edge — but in a single sheet.

Short explains that each side of the sheet features a tag that can easily be peeled off and placed on the shelf. After the first side has been applied, simply flip the sheet over and rotate to begin applying the other half of the Shelf Talkers. 

It also is delivered without a liner between the tags, which allows the user to cut costs and the amount of environmental waste that they would have if a liner were present. As for the paper-based tags themselves, “They can be recycled,” Short says.

Making it Easy

NAStar recently started the rollout of its Shelf Talker product, which also is available in its FastFoldZ format. In this incarnation, multiple tags are fan folded into a single stack.

FastFoldZ also provides retail workers with more convenience by keeping all the labels together in a single bundle. Instead of having to take additional time to flip and rotate the sheet to locate the next tag, the employee merely needs to turn to the next one in the sequence of folded tags. “It makes it easier,” Short says.

After NAStar launched the TwoFer Shelf Talker tag, opportunities developed from several superstore, pharmacy and grocery chains, with the main criteria of having the paper-based tags succeed with film-like performance, even in refrigerated or freezer environments. The company also generated interest for the FastFoldZ product at February’s National Grocers Association Show.

So far, the products have earned an enthusiastic response. “It’s been very positive, because the bottom-line cost savings is what drives a lot of things,” Short says, adding that users also appreciate that it is a green product. “It has surprised us in how important and attractive that is for them.”

For example, if a grocery chain with 1,200 stores used the Shelf Talker or FastFoldZ products for one year, “That would eliminate 20 truckloads of silicone-coated liner that would need to get landfilled,” he estimates.

Exciting Times

Spreading the word about NAStar’s TwoFer products has been difficult during the coronavirus pandemic. The company planned to exhibit the Shelf Talker and FastFoldZ products at this year’s Groceryshop show, but the in-person event was cancelled due to the pandemic. 

But NAStar remains optimistic as it grows its level of exposure and continues to look at new ways to do business, including helping clients make the TwoFer Shelf Talkers and FastFoldZ products on their own. “That’s where we’ve had the most interest,” he says.

Many grocers have their own in-plant facilities where they can realize the entirety of the cost savings. “That’s one of the things that we’re excited about,” Short says. 

“Bringing the product in-house allows the retailer to save on the material cost and throughput at their print facility because the TwoFer product, can be duplex printed in one pass,” he continues. “Transportation and fuel costs are decreased with half the amount of material to ship to the individual stores and with the TwoFer FastFoldZ, store labor costs are also reduced.”

NAStar also offers its liner-free concept in other products, including its TwoFer Twin Signage and Graphics, which feature two signs that can be easily peeled off and used for store graphics. It also has its TwoFer E-Commerce Labels, which feature a shipping label, return label and packing list on a single integrated form.

It also offers Print’N Stick Linerless receipt paper with adhesive that convenience store retailers or quick-serve restaurants can stick to beverages or sandwich wrappers to aid in order accuracy for takeout, delivery or modified orders. “That has been [another area] where we’ve seen opportunities and growth,” he says.

Distinguished by Innovation

Based in Middleton, Wis., NAStar started operations in in 1988. With its start in Laser Pressure Sensitive Materials, the pressure-sensitive adhesive coatings company has set itself apart by concentrating on removable, repositionable adhesives that were repulpable and even recyclable, as opposed to focusing on the prime label market.

NAStar has earned patents for its Dual-Faced Labeling Systems TwoFer Linerless Labels Solutions (U.S. Patents 9,613,547 and 10,217,385) and it continues to set itself apart with innovation and performance, Short says. “We do things in the industry that others don’t want to do or don’t know how to do,” he declares.

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