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Protective packaging roundup

Here are four great new ideas for getting the most out of protective packaging. Be sure to read all the way through—Walmart doesn’t often lend its name to someone else’s product.

We’ve all heard the story about trying to pack 10 pounds of whatever into a 5-pound bag. A little protective packaging would probably be in order. And this month it’s in Packaging Corner.

So, while this column generally focuses on a single company and packaging product, this time we’ve got four notable ideas with a new take on protective packaging. Three of them are actually a protective packaging system.

1.) First up is a system that combines an OSARO pick-and-place robot that drops apparel into shipping bags on a Sealed Air AUTOBAG system.

This pairing streamlines the deployment of robotics with automated bagging for a complete and scalable solution in the face of persistent labor shortages,” says OSARO CEO Derik Pridmore.

Smart pick-and-place robot arms with advanced perception-and-control software are integrated with mechanical bagging machines to automate an entire order fulfillment process. One area of particular interest is personalized kitting subscriptions sent to customers each month. Beyond the protective packaging, the robots accelerate order fulfillment of items that range in size and shape.

2.) Ranpak is also focused on speed at the end of the packaging line by focusing on productivity and costs. 

The Cut’it EVO machine is a height-reduction box closing machine that finishes as many as 15 size-optimized boxes a minute. By optimizing the size of each box, shipping volumes are reduced on average 25%.

The machine automatically shortens cartons to match their highest point of filling and securely glues the lid in place. Box sizes range from 9.1 to 25.6 inches in length, 5.9 to 17.7 inches in width and 11.8 to 18.5 inches in height. Maximum box weight when fully loaded is 77 pounds.

3.) Over at Returnity, cardboard is out. 

The company says more than one billion cardboard boxes are used every year to move products between a company’s various facilities in a closed loop. So, the company came up with The Last Box.

It’s made of a light-weight, water-resistant material capable of carrying and protecting 50 pounds. The Last Box is stackable, conveyable and sized to fit 30 on a pallet. It’s shippable by all parcel and freight carriers. The Last Box collapses and nests for efficient return shipments.

4.) And to round out this roundup of protective packaging, we’ve got the Packsize Ultra5 on-demand box machine. 

“The Ultra5 was built exclusively for Walmart and has already been installed in multiple fulfillment centers [FCs], including the first of Walmart’s next generation FCs,” says Rod Gallaway, CEO of Packsize.

The equipment right-sizes up to 600 boxes an hour, reducing packaging waste and filler as well as improving the user’s overall boxing experience. It’s based on the company’s latest technology, the X5, a finalist for the 2023 MHI Innovation Award for Best New Innovation.

“By working with Packsize to develop the Ultra5 machine, we created an innovative packaging solution that tailors each box to the items we’re shipping to customers, eliminating unnecessary waste and improving the unboxing experience once the package arrives,” says Prathibha Rajashekhar, senior vice president, innovation and automation at Walmart U.S. 

Article Topics

Magazine Archive
Packaging Corner
Protective Packaging Solutions
Sealed Air
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About the Author

Gary Forger's avatar
Gary Forger
Gary Forger is an editor at large for Modern Materials Handling. He is the former editorial director of Modern Materials Handling and senior vice president of MHI. He was also the editor of the Material Handling & Logistics U.S. Roadmap to 2030.
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September 2023 Modern Materials Handling

Providers of automated packaging and carton right-sizing solutions have thrived by offering systems that deliver on labor and parcel shipment savings— now they’re looking to further evolve by looking to use lighter materials and support flexible “box-first” workflows.

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