01 December 2016 //
by Ken Carter
Shrink-wrapped trays provide product manufacturers with a number of functional benefits that enable cost-effective distribution throughout the supply chain. Watch the video to learn more.
The one thing that shrink does not do: it doesn’t really benefit vertical stacking strength. It can for certain products because it pulls them tightly together. So, that instead of having 5 or 6 or 12 separate items, you have 12 in a block. So you get that added strength of them being as a unit instead of 12 separate packages. With cans, they have that inherent strength. They’re the perfect medium for stacking. You can stack them basically as high as you like. Anything that has that inherent strength is an easy product to say “let’s put it into shrink.”
Now, the reason you go with tray shrink with cans, is that when you take the film off, the cans will fall all over the place unless you have something to support them. Secondly, being steel, the rims of the cans can actually cut through the film if it’s set up as steel on steel. So if you have a tray in between, it stops that from happening.
Where do you from there as far as other tray shrink items? The next thing that’s happening is glass is being taken over by PET or heat-cured plastics because it’s lighter to ship and it doesn’t break — so you can put all sorts of products into PET containers and basically they can support themselves as well.
Those are kind of the easy ones, but there are lots of other things that could be trayed and shrunk. For example, we’ve just done some display packages for over-the-counter, mass merchandised vitamins and that type of thing in a display tray, where it’s very high-walled and they want to just rip the film off and put it on an end-of-aisle display.
Our equipment is modular in design. So we have different modules that we put together in a tailored solution for the customer. We’ve just done one for a whole variety of different size containers, different types of containers and different size trays, different collations and everything that they produce in the plant goes through one tray shrink system.