The objective of transport packaging is preservation of the product in its delivery from point of manufacture to the customer. Without packaging, most products would have a difficult and expensive trip through handling and transportation, many of them delivered to customers in a damaged condition. Transport packaging actually adds to the value of the product, by lowering the cost for customers to obtain possession of the product from its origination.
Transport packaging, also known as "distribution packaging" in North America, includes the shipping container, interior protective packaging, and any unitizing materials for shipping. It does not include packaging for consumer products such as ...view middle of the document...
Packaging furnishes the degree of protection needed to safely transport products from source to customer
o Performance - Packaging aids in transportation, handling, storing, selling and use of the product. This function includes such things as orientation of the product, ease of identification, appropriate quantity, ease of disposal, handling features.
o Communication - The package must identify its contents and inform about package features and handling requirements. It generally provides space for shipping information as well.
To design a transport package one must have Goals or Objectives in mind. These will vary with products, customers, distribution systems, manufacturing facilities, etc. but most, transport packaging should address the following objectives:
Product Protection - The primary purpose of any transport package is to insure the integrity and safety of its contents through the entire distribution system.
Ease of Handling and Storage - All parts of the distribution system should be able to economically move and store the packaged product.
Shipping Effectiveness - Packaging and unitizing should enable the full utilization of carrier vehicles and must meet carrier rules and regulations.
Manufacturing Efficiency - The packing and unitizing of goods should utilize labor and facilities effectively.
Ease of Identification - Package contents and routing should be easy to see, along with any special handling requirements.
Customer Needs - The package must provide ease of opening, dispensing, and disposal, as well as meet any special handling or storage requirements the customer may have.
Environmental Responsibility - In addition to meeting regulatory requirements, the design of packaging and unitizing should minimize solid waste by any of the following: reduction-return-reuse-recycle.
Since transport packaging should always be economical, the above goals should be balanced or optimized to achieve the lowest overall cost.
Taking a Total System Approach to Package Design
The scope of design in transport packaging must consider all aspects of the distribution system including customers, carriers, and distributors as well as the manufacturing plant, packaging line, warehousing and shipping. Successful package design is a total system approach.
Once created, a package does not magically form around the product, float through shipping, travel hundreds of miles in isolation, arrive at the customer’s site and disappear. It has an influence on and is influenced by everyone and everything it encounters. Many of these encounters will affect manufacturing and distribution costs, or products integrity with indirect impact on sales. Therefore such events should be considered in the design process.
Unfortunately, there is often too much focus on the cost of packaging materials to the exclusion of other factors, including cost-related ones in handling, storage and transportation. If the package is slightly larger and/or...