Single Pack Tracking using Data Matrix

Accurately read codes on cigarette packs on high-speed conveyers

Image-based barcode reader decoding 2D Data Matrix codes on cigarette packs

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Strict industry regulations require cigarette manufacturers to ensure end-to-end tobacco traceability. Each cigarette or e-cigarette pack must contain a unique code that includes manufacturer, date and lot information, and contents. This information is stored in a database for regulatory compliance and authentication, and to track and trace the product from production line to retail distribution.

Laser printed DotCode or Data Matrix symbologies are typically located on the side of the cigarette packs, which are moving along a conveyer at high speed. These codes contain between 30 and 50 digits that must be read at close range. The code print quality can become degraded over time affecting readability. Cigarette packs with codes that cannot be read are rejected from the line and either scrapped or manually reworked, impacting the manufacturer with additional labor costs or reduced revenue.

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Cognex’s barcode readers provide optimal traceability for single cigarette packages and are cost-effective, and easy to install and maintain. DataMan 280 and 370 series readers process up to 1,000 packs per minute without the need for an external PC. The high-powered integrated lighting delivers optimal image formation in the dimly lit production environments and advanced barcode reading algorithms reliably read even the most degraded codes maximizing read rates. DataMan readers also handle codes at various working distances easily thanks to high resolution liquid lens technology for quick and reliable autofocusing.

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