04 December 2015 //
Whether it’s industrial equipment or personal care bottles, shrink bundling can provide packaging cost savings in addition to helping prevent product damage. Learn how in this short video.
I was involved in shrink bundling when the energy crisis was happening in Europe, when we thought we were going to run out of gas (or petrol). The whole push was to reduce the amount of energy used to produce the material. It takes a lot less energy to produce plastics than it does corrugated.
EDL used to be based in a small UK town. We were on an industrial park. There were five other companies on that industrial park that used shrink bundlers.
There was a company that made industrial, stainless steel chimneys that you clamped together and they were for high-temperature applications. Those chimneys were distributed all over Europe. They put a polystyrene end cap on the ends and shrunk them to protect them.
I was involved in that project when they took the chimneys out of corrugated and put them into this method of packaging. The benefits in terms of the reduction of damage were astounding. I mean, they cut their returns and their damage ratio by 99 percent. It was incredible. Because the chimneys were modular, they stacked them. The polystyrene all lined up and they stacked them in the trucks. They were trucking them all over Europe.
When we first came here in 1985 we had a machine that bundled 12 plastic bottles of shampoo together. In Europe and England, that 12-pack went straight on a pallet and they were stacked on pallets. There wasn’t any corrugated at all. There was just 2-3 cents of film holding that package together and it went straight on the pallet.
That’s a perfect project for bundling because it’s flexible packaging. You put the film around it and shrink it down and it shrinks down to the shape of the package. So the machine in many ways, other than the material handling of getting the product into and away from the machine, doesn’t care what it’s wrapping. It will wrap round things, square things —it will unitize all those different items all on the same machine. And that’s a big benefit of shrink bundling, or what we call flexible packaging.