2017 Packaging Innovations & Predictions
Inventors constantly come up with new ways to do things, making things easier for businesses and consumers. For the packing and shipping materials businesses use every day, the goal is always to find better more affordable ways to keep items safe while they travel from one place to another. Whether it’s the air pillow inflatable systems like Fromm Airpad or AirPouch that keeps delicate items from being damaged during shipment or the foam in bags systems like IntelliPack’s SmartBAGGER™ used to ship delicate hardware safely and securely, it’s important to create affordable solutions that get results.
In 2017, efficiency is king. At the 2016 EastPack Conference, attendees were given a sneak preview of all of the innovative solutions coming to the industry through the annual AmeriStar awards. Here are a few things your business can look forward to as 2017 begins.
In-House Shrink Sleeves & Stretch Wrap
For years, businesses have relied on production lines to create professional-looking shrink-wrapped products. In 2017, more businesses will invest in equipment to manage this process in house. For only a few thousand dollars, you can purchase a shrink-wrap sleeve maker that can be used to create custom-made shrink-wrap for each of your products. You can then use a heat gun or separate steam machine to adhere the sleeves to the item. Hand stretch wrap is also available for smaller jobs.
Sensors promise to improve a wide variety of industries, including manufacturing and shipping. As the technology has become more affordable, businesses are realizing the benefits of sensors for logistics and shipment tracking. This technology will become even more popular in the coming years, giving businesses the ability to monitor their sensitive shipments at each step of transit. Even if you’re on a limited budget, you could implement sensors at random to monitor the activities of your chosen shipping provider. The technology could let you know when and where items were dropped or sitting idle when they should have been managed more professionally.
In 2017, the focus on environmental responsibility will continue to grow, with businesses retooling their packaging to use less waste. Industry has shifted its attention toward bio-plastics, which have a biodegradability that is higher than traditional plastics. If you haven’t already, look at ways you can change your product packaging and shipment processes to incorporate more environmentally-friendly options.
In shipping, package weight makes a big difference, allowing businesses to keep costs low while still providing top-quality service. This is especially true of temperature-sensitive shipments since ice packs can add unwelcome pounds. By shifting your perishables using this technology, you can save significant money compared to what you’re currently paying to ship items using traditional heating and cooling methods.
There’s also a big push on converting steel customers to plastic. With new technology or additives, plastic strap can withstand bitter cold temperatures which has been the biggest reason companies used so much steel in the past. This means less product weight and safety risks involved with plastic.
If you haven’t reevaluated your shipping methods in recent years, you may be surprised how many different options are now available.highly engineered polyester strapping material that combines the performance properties of both steel and plastic strapping to form a stronger, more resilient strapping material. We’ll most likely see continued innovations around strapping material in 2017.
In 2017, businesses will likely find their options for shipping and packaging have increased dramatically. It’s important to set time aside to review current practices and research ways to save money, increase efficiency, and create more environmentally-friendly solutions. Not only will this improve your business’s bottom line, but it will also boost the customer service you provide to those who buy from you each year. As always, Blackhawk looks forward to helping you with all of your packaging needs.