Packaging and Crating Checklist 2016

checklistAs this New Year descends upon us, we thought it would be appropriate to create a checklist of considerations for industrial packaging needs that one could use for 2016.   These needs are beyond protecting your product from damage due to jostling, dropping, tilting or sliding,  for the purposes of the checklist, we assume that protecting the product is a given.   Below is a checklist of other items that sometimes get overlooked.

Container Size:  For large crates, just reducing the size by an inch can make a difference in shipping costs.   Sometimes what mode of transport used such as type of aircraft or truck can make a huge difference in costs.  For air transport the limiting factor is usually cargo doors, if the crate is too big to fit through the doors, then a bigger aircraft needs to be utilized.  The following article discusses some of the cost elements and risks associated with crate size.  Custom Crating Considerations.

ISPM15:  If you are shipping internationally and using wood crating, then the packaging system needs to be ISPM15 compliant.  This means that the wood, (including dunnage) needs to have a special treatment to assure that it is insect/larvae free.  The ISPM15 regulations are part of a treaty that was developed for the specific purpose of preventing the transport of invasive species from one continent to another.

Cleanliness:   Is the product that you are packaging going into a clean room?  Then you need to insure that the packaging materials do not shed.   Many of plastic foam cushioning materials used today will shed.   Using non-shedding cushioning materials are a must for cleanroom applications.

Corrosion Protection:  Metal products could be susceptible to corrosion.  Under the right conditions, corrosion can even happen on a short transport.   As trips get longer or if the product gets stored before getting uncrated, one should consider a corrosion inhibiting strategy.   If you are transporting by ocean, where the product is sure to be exposed to a salty mist, then corrosion protection is an absolute must.  Packnet distributes Cortec products.  Cortec is the world leader in corrosion inhibiting systems.   See our corrosion inhibitor webpage for more info.

Monitoring Shipping and Handling:   Product damage can have a serious impact on your profits as well as your customer relationships.  A carrier can always claim that damage was due to improper packaging and not due to poor handling.   ShockWatch® handling indicators and monitoring products can provide indisputable proof of mishandling, helping assure a fast and equitable settlement of a shipping damage claim.

Ergonomics:   Material handling workers have one of the highest accident rates in the industry.   Poor packaging design can result in prolonged or short term skeleton/muscular stress that may cause injuries that result in lost productivity and hardships on your employees.

Reusability:  One of the best strategies for saving packaging material costs and reducing environmental stress is to continually reuse packaging.  Reusable containers require special materials and perhaps design modifications, but the added investment can result in lower packaging costs as well as being more environmentally friendly.

The above items are only a partial list of all the packaging considerations that could save you money.    The best strategy for developing cost effective packaging for your products is to use an industry expert such as Packnet.   Let us perform a comprehensive evaluation of your current packaging needs and let us show you how much cost you can save.  More info on our free packaging assessment.