IMC is an abbreviation for Injection Mold Code. It is a number that indicates the plastic factory (and by extension the country) in which the stem was produced. The IMC can usually be found near the "Z" of the word PEZ at the top of the stem on the side where the word PEZ reads from bottom to top.
Since some Pez dispensers sold in Europe do not have the country of origin indicated on the stem, the IMC can be used as a means of determining where the dispenser was made. It can also sometimes be used to determine when a dispenser was made, in the case of some countries that split into smaller countries or changed name, such as Jugoslavia / Yugoslavia / Slovenia (IMC 5) or Czechoslovakia / Czech Republic (IMC 7).
Austria: Dates: before 1989. Patent numbers: 3.9 and earlier.
Hungary: Dates: 1989 - present. Patent numbers: 4.9 and later.
Austria (earlier, years unspecified)
Hungary (later, years unspecified)
Hungary (after 1989)
Austria (1988 - 1989)
Austria (years unspecified)
IMC 4 sometimes has a two-digit code, often referred to as a Dual IMC. The second digit, which ranges from 1 to 8, is smaller and can be found to the right of the number 4. Since Austria had several plastic molding plants that were used the produce Pez dispensers, the second digit was used to identify the specific facility where the dispenser was produced. Stems with a dual IMC are rarer than those with single-digit IMC codes.
Yugoslavia (1964 - 1970)
Slovenia (1976 - 2008)
Hong Kong (before 1978)
China (1978 - present)
Hong Kong (1979)
Austria (before 1990)
Czech Republic (1990 - 1991)
Czechoslovakia (? - 1993)
Austria (1976 - 1990)
United States: Vermont (years unspecified)
Yugoslavia (? - 1992)
Slovenia (after 1993)