J. Rieger in partnership with the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum releases Fielder's ChoiceBy Kat McDaniel, Principal at MEDiAHEAD

This was such a fun project to work on. The limited edition of spirits celebrate two of our country’s favorite pastimes: sipping fine spirits and enjoying the game of baseball.

Who isn’t ready for some spring weather and baseball?

If you aren’t familiar with the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum: In 1920, an organized league structure was formed under the guidance of Andrew “Rube” Foster—a former player, manager, and owner for the Chicago American Giants. In a meeting held at the Paseo YMCA in Kansas City, Mo., Foster, and a few other Midwestern team owners joined to form the Negro National League.

Soon, rival leagues formed in Eastern and Southern states, bringing the thrills and innovative play of black baseball to major urban centers and rural country sides in the U.S., Canada, and Latin America. The Leagues maintained a high level of professional skill and became centerpieces for economic development in many black communities.

The Lineup

Each bottle features a retro label inspired by Negro Leagues teams with their logo on the inside of the label. All the spirits include Kansas City whiskey and three components that make that whiskey: bourbon, rye, and light corn whiskey.

J. Rieger in partnership with the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum releases Fielder's Choice

KANSAS CITY MONARCHS is a Kansas City whiskey finished in KC Bier Co barrels. Beer and baseball have always gone together, and these beer casks add a uniquely malty flavor to their whiskey.

HOMESTEAD GRAYS with a rye whiskey, like that of Pennsylvania’s traditional ryes, but this spirit has spice, with well-balanced and complex aromas and rich flavors.

LOUIS STARS is a limited-edition small batch straight bourbon whiskey. It is a variation of their classis bourbon distillation of corn, rye and malted barley, it’s rich, malty and buttery.

CHICAGO AMERICAN GIANTS is a limited-edition light corn whiskey that tastes like your favorite baseball snack Cracker Jacks! This delicious spirit delivers notes of popcorn, caramel, and peanut brittle.

A portion of the proceeds will benefit The Negro Leagues Baseball Museum, a true Kansas City treasure.

Need help getting your labels printed? Give us a call!

By Kat McDaniel, Principal at MEDiAHEAD

With our new equipment, we have the capabilities to print a wide range of embellishments and effects.

  • Hot Foil – this method of foiling can achieve finer and higher quality detail. Hot foil has a premium, luxurious effect to communicate quality.
  • Cold Foil – an alternative method of foiling that is more cost effective than hot foil due to lower set up costs.
  • Emboss – an effect created by raising a design or image from the label surface to give it a tactile feel or highlight certain design elements or patterns.
  • Lamination – the entire label can be finished in either gloss or matt coating.
  • Metallic Ink – metallic inks are used to create a similar effect to foil, via the shine of the metallic particles found in the ink.
  • Specialty Inks:
    • Scratch n Sniff – a wide range of custom and stock scents.
    • Glitter – glitter infused coatings.
    • Black light – the effect is revealed under UV or black light.
    • Glow in the dark – used for security or novelty.

Why Embellishments?

Embellishment and Effects in LabelingLabel embellishments can help differentiate a brand from competitors.

Research has shown that when brands implement packaging that can involve 2 or more of the human senses, sales of that product go up. The goal of any package design is to a consumer to pick up a product, turn it over in their hands, and to promote positive feelings. An effective package is creative, looks great on the shelf, and effectively communicates to a consumer in under 7 seconds.

Our team has extensive expertise in all things related to labels. We would love to meet with you to discuss your needs, share our knowledge and develop a solution designed specially for you! Please give us a call.

Meet the ‘Inverted Jenny.’

Inverted Jenny

The Inverted Jenny was a misprint of a stamp created in 1918 to commemorate the start of regular airmail service. In the early 1900’s printing was done one color at a time and in a rush to print the stamps before the inaugural flight the printer made a batch with the ‘Jenny” biplane flying upside down.

Once the Post Office discovered the mistake, they stopped circulation of nearly all the misprints, except for a sheet of 100 that was sold to the public. In the last 200 years, those stamps have become the most famous and sought after treasure in the stamp world.

Printing mistakes happen all the time.

If you realize that you have made a mistake on a printed job – call the printer and ask for suggestions. We are always willing to reprint a portion of the job or reprint the job at a discount.

Any printer who tells you – “too bad, you signed the proof” will not be in business very long. Having a long relationship with the person who made a mistake is the goal in offering a solution. Years ago, one of the designers at HNTB made a mistake on a big brochure because she didn’t run spell check – we fixed it at no cost, and I have now enjoyed a 25-year relationship with that company.

But sometimes it’s just not possible. Sometimes the cost is too high, and the customer too irate for any kind of recovery. It happens.

One final word of advice: Always run spell check. Always.

HP 6800, 7-color digital packaging pressReady to take your brand to the next level? Our new HP 6800, 7-color digital packaging press has the most versatile finisher on the market. Our state-of-the-art technology can perform multiple finishing processes in one run, allowing you to receive high-end labels without the high cost associated with complex setups.

Our “Rolls Royce” of label and packaging solutions produces a wide array of premium finishes like foil stamping, embossing, shrink films for packaging and beverages, and die-cutting. Even fine lines and detailed elements come off the press beautifully.

Our eye-catching packaging and labels will help your brand stand out in a crowded market and leave a lasting impression. Our team of experts will work with you to create a label that is tailored to your brand’s unique identity and messaging.

HP 6800, 7-color digital packaging press HP 6800, 7-color digital packaging press HP 6800, 7-color digital packaging press

BECAUSE WE’RE LOCAL your high-quality labels are delivered on-time, so you don’t have to worry about delays in your process.

HP 6800, 7-color digital packaging pressOur labels are not only visually stunning, but they are also durable and functional. We use high-quality materials that can withstand various environmental conditions, ensuring that your label stays looking great from production to consumption. Plus, our quick turnaround times guarantee smooth production processes – no delays or waiting around for shipments. We are local, so you can even come and watch them run or press okay the batch.

Our goal is to provide you with a premium label solution that will help you increase brand awareness, drive sales, and ultimately grow their business.

Our labels are an investment in your brand’s success, and we are confident that our product will exceed your expectations.

Time for an upgrade? Give Kat a call at 816.621.2451.

HP 6800, 7-color digital packaging press HP 6800, 7-color digital packaging press HP 6800, 7-color digital packaging press

By Kat McDaniel, Principal at MEDiAHEAD

A New Standard for Sustainability with a Warming PlanetWe understand the importance of sustainability and have been committed to reducing our environmental impact for many years.

Digital Printing

Digital printing allows you to print exactly what you need when you need it. This reduces unnecessary printing and minimizes resource consumption. Additionally, printing shorter runs locally reduces transportation costs, lowering your carbon footprint.

We are also focusing on local and using sustainable products to ship in. Not using UPS or FedEx can drastically reduce your carbon footprint. We’re hoping to add an electric vehicle to our fleet to make deliveries soon!

Paper companies that we use must be deforestation free… as well as the materials that we buy from the mills. They also must commit to improve the livelihood of their workers and areas that they timber in.

A New Standard for Sustainability with a Warming Planet A New Standard for Sustainability with a Warming Planet

Zero Waste

For over fifteen years we have committed to zero waste to the landfill and using environmentally friendly inks without solvents.

Too much of packaging is plastic. We are also working with companies to use more sustainable packing solutions or something that can be recycled.

Did you know that one of the most searched questions on Google is “How can I make my cannabis packaging more sustainable?”

For the good of the planet, we are constantly focusing on continuous improvement initiatives to make labels and packaging more sustainable.

Give me a call and I’ll show you what we are working on.

A New Standard for Sustainability with a Warming Planet A New Standard for Sustainability with a Warming Planet

When you order labels, you will be asked about unwind directions by your printer. Unless it’s accurately identified, we could easily print labels that didn’t fit correctly on your products or the machines applying them.

(If you are just hand applying labels to your package or product, then the unwind directions are not important. This usually applies to labels that are smaller quantities and not machine applied.)

With machine labeled product – this is critical! They MUST be properly aligned.

Let’s look at an example using the J Rieger bottles.

Unwind InstructionsWe need to consider the shape and orientation of the glass bottle to which the label will be applied. Because they apply their labels with a machine – the container and the roll of labels need to meet up in the correct way, so that the label gets applied perfectly every time.

The machines typically roll the labels onto the surface, rotating the bottle as this happens. The roll needs to be aligned so that the leading edge of the product label comes off the roll with the height oriented – otherwise the label would be applied lying down, instead of standing up!

Keep in mind that labels are like print – the first measurement is always the width of the label and the send refers to the height.

I know this all sounds ridiculously complicated, but no worries – we’re here to help you every step of the way!

Need help with your next label project? Give us a call!

What if all packaging was digitally printed?If all packaging was printed digitally, it would reduce package waste by 26% and save 50+ million tons from landfills.

Digital printing reduces environmental impact – print what you need, where and when you need it.

REDUCE UNNECESSARY PRINTING: digital gives you the freedom to print smaller amounts for market tests, versions on-demand and customization.

RESOURCE EFFICIENCY: with digital printing, you do not require plates and cylinders. The pre-press process is significantly shortened, and you also need to maintain lower levels of inventory and less paper used due to almost no makeready.

REDUCE TRANSPORTATION COSTS: by printing shorter runs locally, as opposed to printing on the East or West coast, and then shipping to Kansas City, you reduce your carbon footprint and non-renewable energy consumption caused by shipping.

AFFORDABILITY: A growing number of price-conscious businesses are giving digital printing a try because the cost per unit is significantly less than the cost of using offset printing for low and mid-volume orders. Money is saved on the front end because of reduced setup costs and tooling (print plates and dies). Additionally, there are no order minimums, allowing you to only pay for the printing that you need – even if your needs are modest. Companies also enjoy a healthier cash flow because the printing process is faster, and products can ship more quickly – thereby improving stream of revenue.

A prospect’s first impression of your brand is heavily influenced by the packaging you choose. Digitally printed packaging offers a host of benefits, including impressive accuracy, flexibility, and speed to market.

To learn more about digital printing options, please give us a call.

MEDiAHEAD uses HP’s SmartStream and Mosaic software to make each label or shrink sleeve a truly original, one-of-a-kind piece of artwork. With our specialized software, a single vector file can be transformed into countless variations of original art. Hyper-customization can be incorporated into any pressure sensitive label, shrink sleeve or flexible packaging product.

Hyper-customization is the next frontier in packaging that can help a brand sell more.

Stand Out From the CrowdFor a campaign called I Have the Only One! Nutella printed seven million unique labels, each jar “like a piece of art,” stamped with its own unique code so it could be authenticated by collectors. The algorithm designed seven million completely different jars of Nutella for the campaign. The algorithm pulled from a database of dozens of patterns and colors to create the versions of Nutella’s graphic identity, which have been splashed across the front of jars.

The jars were sold through Italian supermarkets and were completely sold out in one month.


Hyper-customization - Stand Out From the CrowdAdding a personalized touch to a product or service can prove to be a brand’s unique selling proposition. Relentless efforts in making the packaging stand out among the clutter and the heavy investments in doing so are evident. Personalized packaging has assumed more importance as brands not only want to cater to the clients’ needs and wants but obviously want to make a lasting impact by tapping the emotions and desires of customers. Such personalization in packaging reaps long-term loyalty, brand recall and registration.

If you would like to know more about how MEDiAHEAD could help you with hyper-customization for your next project, please give us a call.


Brand protection is one of top three concerns for brand owners, when considering their package printing. With HP Indigo Invisible Electrlnks, we can print your labels with digitally invisible features to protect your product from counterfeiting.

Inks only visible under common UV light, without a need for a specialized reader is now possible for covert brand protection features.

Case Study: Alpha Neon

Is Brand Security for Package Printing Important to You?Alpha Neon, a food supplement manufacturer, experienced a 40% drop in sales over a three-month period, due to an influx of imitations of their products. Alpha therefore wanted to introduce a new look, with a label that would be impossible to copy and would incorporate security features.

Their solution was that each label, printed on a 6800 HP Indigo Digital Press using the HP SmartStream Designer, contains a unique code that enables consumers to authenticate the product via e-mail or SMS. (And we recently acquired this amazing label and packing solution at MEDiAHEAD!)

In addition, Invisible Blue ElectroInk was used on the logo and on the word ‘Darkside’. The sellers receive UV lights to shine on the products to allow them to immediately recognize the authentic ones.

For the relaunch – UV strips were also applied to the shelves in stores. And as an added security measure, digital varnish was applied to the label, which created a tactile finish that is difficult to replicate.

Alpha Neon was thrilled with the labels and saw an increase in sales almost immediately after launching their product back into the market.

We can now offer a vast portfolio of unique and exclusive security solutions, due to the wide variety of inks, substrates and the power to give each product a unique ID!

To learn more about how this technology can help you with your next project, please give us a call!

Due to the lack of local capacity for high quality packaging, and with the encouragement of J. Rieger for their distillery label needs, we are so excited to launch a new label and packing capability to the KC market!

In April, MEDiAHEAD acquired a Hewlett Packard 6800 7-color digital packaging press with the most versatile finisher on the market – the Grafisk Maskinfabrik HF 330 Standalone Hot Foil and the SC330 Compact Label Finisher.

The New Press The New Press

The “Rolls Royce” of label and packing solutions – it can perform multiple finishing processes in one run: shrink films for packaging and beverages, multi-layer labels, laser die cutting, hot and cold foil, digital varnish and cast & cure.

The right combination of quality and beauty.

The HF330 delivers endless hot stamping possibilities, combined with embossing. With our 50-ton stamper, thin lines and detailed elements are no problem, giving you the best embellishments that are available.

The New Press

The new HP 6800 packaging press has the widest ink portfolio in the industry: spot PMS, premium white, silver with a wide gamut of metallic colors, fade resistant yellow, magenta and orange, invisible yellow, blue and red for security, fluorescent pink for glow in the dark. Orange, violet and green can achieve highly accurate spot color emulations.

A suite of enhanced label resistance labels will also be available – chemical, mechanical, thermal, water and scuff resistance.

The New Press

With this press, anything can become variable: text, barcodes, images of even the patterns themselves. Once you provide the basic elements, HP Collage creates virtually unlimited variations.

We will be sharing more stories about these capabilities being used for client projects to show you just how capable this new solution is!

If you want to learn more about these capabilities for your next project, please give us a call!