Compostable Labels

Consumers are increasingly becoming concerned about sustainability, and as a result, companies are experiencing immense pressure to ensure their packaging and labeling solutions and practices are environmentally conscious. For instance, 68% of highly empowered consumers surveyed in a Forrester study “plan to step up their efforts to identify brands that reduce environmental impact,” and 61% look for brands using energy-efficient labels when making purchase decisions.

Many companies have already begun exploring different sustainable packaging solutions, and using compostable labels has recently gained traction. These labels come with numerous environmental advantages and meet the demands of eco-conscious consumers.

Understanding Compostable Labels

Compostable labels utilize organic materials, like cornstarch, potato starch, or sugarcane. They are designed to break down and turn into nutrients in a composting environment, returning to nature. Compostable labels are different from biodegradable labels, which may decompose but don’t provide the additional nutrients that compostable products do. After decomposition, compostable labels can act as a fertilizer to improve the health of the soil in the area.

Benefits of Compostable Labels

Compostable Labels

Below are some of the environmental advantages compostable labels offer:

  • Elimination of Forever Chemicals (PFAS): Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAs) are harmful “forever chemicals” widely used in various industries for their water and grease-resistant properties. Compostable labels offer an eco-friendly alternative, eliminating PFAs and promoting a more sustainable approach to packaging.
  • Minimizes Landfill Waste: Compostable labels break down into organic matter, helping reduce landfill waste.
  • Reduces Greenhouse Gas Emissions: Unlike traditional labels, which emit substantial amounts of greenhouse gas into the environment, compostable shipping labels are made from renewable resources, reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
  • Conserving Natural Resources: The use of renewable materials in compostable labels helps conserve the use of natural resources.
  • Sustainable Packaging: Compostable labels are inherently sustainable due to the ability of their materials to decompose to natural elements or be recycled for further use.
  • Enhancing Brand Reputation: As previously mentioned, a large majority of consumers prioritize buying from eco-conscious brands. Compostable labels are an easy step to improve your brand image and meet the consumer demand for eco-friendly products while complying with enhanced sustainability regulations.

Compostable Labels in Various Industries

Some of the industries that benefit from using compostable labels include the following:

Food and Beverage Packaging & Labeling

Compostable labels are suitable for food packaging and labeling or branding fresh produce, bottled beverages, prepared meals, etc. They offer sustainable packaging and marketing solutions without compromising product integrity.

Cosmetics and Personal Care Products

The cosmetics and personal care industry uses compostable labels in cosmetics, bath and body care items, skin products, etc.

Key Considerations for Compostable Labels

Material Selection

When selecting a compostable label for your product, it is essential to choose one made of renewable materials, ensuring that the label can break down fully in the right environment.

Printing Techniques and Inks

The sustainability of compostable labels can be further enhanced by using environmentally friendly printing techniques and inks. Water-based and soy-based options are examples of eco-friendly options. Also, HP Indigo’s printing inks have a TUV Austria and DIN Certco certification for use on compostable labels and flexible packaging materials.

Compostable Labels from NADCO Tapes & Labels

At NADCO Tapes & Labels, Inc., we offer the following lines of compostable labels:

Facestock 6352

Our Facestock 6352 is suitable for various sustainable labels, including wine, spirits, food and beverage, and other retail products. Sugar cane fibers comprise approximately 95% of this label with hemp and linen comprising the remaining 5%. The uncoated, matte, wood-free printing paper has good adhesions on various substrates.


  • Basis Weight: N/A
  • Caliper: 0.00472 inches +/- 10%
  • Tensile: N/A
  • Tear: N/A
  • Stiffness: N/A
  • Adhesive: General-purpose acrylic


This product is suitable for all kinds of applications. However, it works best for applications that require direct food contact with dry foodstuff, e.g., vegetable and fruit labeling, and where the entire packaging needs to be compostable.

The adhesive has OK compost certification under the tracking number S259. Other compliance includes the European food regulation (1935/2004/EC) for direct food contact with non-fatty, dry food and DIN EN 13432 regulation on compostability.


  • 45#BG is a white, supercalendered glassine paper.
  • Basis Weight: N/A
  • Caliper: 0.00209 inches +/- 10%
  • Tensile: N/A
  • Tear: N/A
  • Total Construction Caliper (approximate): 0.00689 inches +/- 10%

NADCO Tapes & Labels’ Efforts Towards Sustainability

At Nadco Tapes & Labels, sustainability is our core value. As a LEED Silver certified building, we actively recycle and repurpose packaging materials. Collaborating with HP Indigo, we offer compostable inks for eco-friendly label options, and our cutting-edge HP-Indigo 6k digital press showcases our commitment to sustainable printing. Moreover, we prioritize partnering with like-minded vendors who share our vision of greener manufacturing processes. Our printing plate vendor’s shift from analog to digital plate making, supported by a solvent reclaim system, reflects our dedication to reducing environmental impact. Embracing a future of eco-conscious practices, we strive to lead the industry toward a more sustainable tomorrow.

Contact Our Experts for Compostable Labels

As consumers become more concerned about global sustainability, they are attracted to eco-conscious brands. Embracing compostable labels is an excellent move towards ensuring a more eco-friendly footprint. Since each of our customers has different branding requirements, custom printed tapes and labels are available to match your unique ideas and intended applications.

At NADCO Tapes & Labels, we are experts in customization and have the capacity to convert and print in-house. We have a wide array of equipment, such as our HP Indigo digital press, to help us complete your project under a single roof. Contact us to talk to one of our experts today or request a quote for more information.