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The ITL Group, an international apparel label solutions company, has partnered with Applied DNA to marry SigNature DNA forensic marking system with their printed fabric care labels to support global apparel and footwear brands and retailers in their ongoing battle against product counterfeiters.

Applied DNA has demonstrated feasibility of SigNature DNA forensic authentication and Beacon® optical screening technology integrated with ITL’s wet ink solution for fabric care labels, creating a multi-layer anti-counterfeit solution. The technology is intended to be applied to printed fabric labels (PFL), either via the supply of a stand-alone PFL or through integration of their existing washcare labels.  Further testing and development is required to validate through the product lifecycle prior to general market availability, with an interest by ITL to conduct further trials on their range of heat transfer labels.  A solution is expected to launch in the near future.

Applied DNA designs and formulates the DNA with Beacon-encrypted fluorescence in ITL ink at their US Laboratories. The DNA delivers 100% individuality, forming the basis of unquestionable evidence of authenticity for any brand seeking to bring a prosecution against a found counterfeiter of labels.

Whilst the SigNature DNA authenticity tests can be verified forensically in the field or on site or in the Applied DNA laboratories, the integration of Beacon technology provides the means for brands to conduct their own ‘rapid read’ checks on suspected items in the field.

A proprietary chemical compound placed within the ink, which is completely invisible under normal or ultraviolet lighting conditions illuminates only when rubbed with a specific swab device that will be supplied by ITL to the brands. This reaction produces the ‘Beacon’ illumination effect on the end of the swab which is then detected when shone with a UV torch. In effect, a ‘lock and key’ solution is created for field screening of the SigNature DNA mark to support forensic DNA authentication conducted remotely.

“Counterfeiting continues to be one of the most significant problems within our industry and accounts for around 10% of global GDP.  The growth of on-line pop-up’s selling full price fakes has only exacerbated the issue in recent years and new research has shown that now for every one consumer who knowingly buys a counterfeit product, there are another 30 or so who purchase unwittingly.”

Simon Phelps, ITL’s European Sales and Marketing Director

“We have perfected the capabilities of our SigNature® DNA and Beacon™ technologies for a wide range of authentication applications in print and packaging and we are delighted to partner with ITL on this project as it adds yet one more tool to help protect consumer goods in a cost-effective, globally available solution. ITL’s capabilities in that regard are class leading”.

Tony Benson, Managing Director, EMEA, Applied DNA Sciences

“What excites us most about our solution is that whilst the application of Applied DNA’s SigNature DNA makes it completely secure and uniquely identifiable, the breakthrough is in the Beacon which is completely hidden until it’s unlocked by the reaction to the chemicals built into the swab.
As a result, brand inspectors are able to make quick checks without receiving unwanted attention and can tell instantly if the product is marked with SigNature DNA. The beauty of the solution is that whilst the science behind it makes it the most credible anti-counterfeit application available, the cost of integrating it into a printing process is relatively low and therefore makes it immediately affordable for a brand to implement.”

Simon Phelps, ITL’s European Sales and Marketing Director

About ITL

ITL is a global provider of Apparel Label Solutions, supporting brands, retailers and manufacturers all around the world with a comprehensive range of products and services aimed at optimising brand identity and supply chain performance.

The group owns widespread printing and weaving operations across a number of key needlepoint locations including China, Bangladesh, India, Sri Lanka, Vietnam, Turkey, Mexico and South Africa.

With over 30 years’ experience, the company supplies some of the best known names in the industry with a wide range of products including wash-care labels, woven labels, variable data tags and stickers, promotional hang tags and packaging, heat transfers, brand protection and RFID solutions.