Laser etching fruit

laserlable-ed02 (Custom)

Ever annoyed by those pesky stickers on your fruit?  They never seem to pull off in one piece and they always leave a little glue behind. Well, the industry might be moving away from them in favor of laser etching each piece of fruit. They are using a low energy carbon dioxide laser to etch the skin. The FDA is in the final stages of approval for using this in the states. It is already in use in New Zealand. We might find this a bit weird, but we’ve seen weirder.


[via slashdot]


  1. andrew says:

    why would you call this “weird?” i think it’s pretty cool!

  2. ino says:


  3. peter says:

    the problem here is that for some applications of fruit, you dont want permanent engravings on your peel. like if you are using it for decor or doing some sort of food art thing with it.

  4. Taylor says:

    yeah i dont see whats weird about this

  5. Hackius says:

    This works for fruit with thick skin but what about apples and the sorts? Won’t this pierce the skin?

  6. jjrh says:

    @peter: it could also add to the visual by putting designs and stuff other than the logo on the fruit.

    I wonder how long it will be before we start seeing huge ads for stuff other than the fruit company’s logo.

    Laser etched fruit, you know your in the future when.

  7. Tim says:

    Old news. They have been doing this on apples for well over a year. It damages the fruit less.

  8. hyperjer says:

    how long till we see hamburger buns burned with lasers with the McDonalds Logo lol

  9. Mark says:

    Looks pretty cool, but I wonder if you could do barcodes with it, since stickers are sometimes used for that.

  10. rasz says:

    that means a flood of cheap affordable portable laser etchers form China – awesome!

  11. kiwi says:

    Yeah this was trialed in New Zealand about a year ago and people didn’t like it for all sorts of reasons so we went back to the crappy stickers. I quite liked the laser engraving personally.

  12. kiwi says:
  13. eric archer says:

    I’d personally miss the stick-on fruit labels. I’ve collected them for years; my microwave oven is completely covered with veggie stickers. Now I’m working on filling up other surfaces. Its kind of like looking into the past… a big cluster of mango stickers (yum) brings back memories of summer.

  14. tantris says:

    no,no,no. much better: imagine rounding up cattle for branding, each cowboy equipped with a shoulder mounted co2-laser.
    but as for apples: id’like to eat the skin -unbranded.

  15. happy gilmore says:

    what’s wrong w/the stickers? both the sticker, ink, and adhesive are safe to eat.

  16. _matt says:

    Paintballs are also safe to eat, but I don’t like eating those either.

    I approve, although the apple thing does bring up a good point.

    If the skin isn’t normally eaten, it should be etched, otherwise etching of others is optional.

  17. mars says:


  18. JavaNut13 says:

    It was used for about a month, and then it was dropped. I only ever saw one apple with the name engraved on the side.

  19. TalkingJazz says:

    I seem to remember recently Kellogs had trialled branding their cornflakes with their logo.

    Personally, i’m not in favor of this (but i do think it’s cool). A lot of fruit is hand picked and packaged. Lasering fruit would involve much more machine-handling would it not? and much more handling in general before being packaged?

    I love my fruit stickers! but do i love lasers more…?

  20. SoulSalmon says:

    I find the stickers come off easily, maybe the American stickers are just cheap then :P

  21. Legato says:

    The sticker is called a PLU.

  22. James says:

    I think it would be better to use an electrically heated branding iron. It could even be made from a soldiering iron tip. (I think)

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