It is hard to place a finger on how important tamper-evident packaging is in the industry. As the world slowly gravitates towards a system where deliveries are taken straight from the manufacturers to the consumers through a third party, the need for a way to keep pilfering at a minimum has never been so important. For the system to work, there had to be a mechanism that protected consumers from the dangers that come with the interference of what they have bought.
We are going to explore ways that you can use to choose the best tamper-evident packaging solutions, how these solutions benefit you in the long run, and the challenges you have to keep in mind when adopting them for your packaging needs. Therefore, if you want to learn more before taking that important first step, then stick to the end.
Types of Tamper Evident Packaging Solutions
Packaging is at the core of manufacturing. It is the only way to ensure goods are kept in good condition until they reach their destination in one piece. This is very important when dealing with perishable consumables that may be affected by contamination easily. But having a protective cover or tin is not enough. You still have to keep sneaky people from getting their paws into the contents of the package without your knowledge. This is where tamper-evident packaging comes in. The following are the main types that are widely used in the manufacturing and packaging world right now.
If you have ever opened new water or juice plastic bottle, then you have come across this type of packaging. Shrink bands are small sleeves of shrink plastic film that are tightly wound and shrunk around the neck of the bottle, covering the bottle top. This ensures that no one is able to open the bottle without first getting rid of the shrink wrap, and if the shrink wrap is affected in any way, then that’s all the proof one would need to know that they are dealing with a breached product.
Most usually match the color of the product to create that seamless blend, and at the same time, they are made transparent in most cases to allow visibility of the brand below them. Shrink bands are heavily used in food and beverage industries with a special focus on bottled water, juices, pickle jars, jams, essential oil containers, and cough medicine, among many others.
The shrink is made by placing a measured plastic ring around the already bottled product, and the heat is applied to the film causing the shrink to quickly contract and hug the bottle completely. This is a process that is carried out using a heat gun or a heat tunnel.
- It is a reliable way of ensuring no one can tamper with the product without being discovered
- It is easy and fast to make
- It is a convenient way to protecting the content of the product as it is easy to open
- It can accommodate all kinds of designs
- Sometimes it creates a very ugly appearance
- If the heat is too much, it may create distortions and even melt the main container down
This is almost similar to shrink bands, but in this case, the wrap is applied around a product in its entirety using what or adhesives. For example, a pack of cigarettes that are packed inside a box is further warped in a clear and strong plastic film.
On top of providing an extra layer of protection, this over-wrap technique is a good way of ensuring that no one is able to interfere with the contents of the packaging. Any breach would be an indication that someone has messed with the product, and that should be considered contaminated.
Another great advantage of overwrap film is that it can be made in varying colors, and it can provide the perfect space for branding and the addition of other important details that relate to the product in question. This is the reason why it is used in most high-value products that range from big to small.
- It offers one of the most reliable tamper-evident solutions in packaging.
- It is a good way of increasing branding for the product
- It is transparent, and this allows for the product to still be visible
- It cannot be sued for consumables as it is not that strong enough to stop contaminants.
Lidding films have been used for a very long time to provide the tamper-evident type of packaging for many industries. If you have ever consumed yogurt or used any OTC pain medication, then you have come across this type of packaging. It is that layer of the lid that is under the main lid that is mostly made of plastic or some bio-based material.
The lid is usually shut tight on the dies and the rims of the container, and unless you pull it off clean or pierce through it, there’s no way you are gaining access to the content. This not only provides a very safe buffer against contamination, but it is a very reliable counter against unauthorized access to the contents of the container in question. If you ordered yogurt and the package arrived with the lidding film breached, then that’s a sign that someone had gained access to it along the way.
Most lidding films can be removed by pulling a tab that is usually left hanging on the side just for this purpose. Considering the size of the lid, many manufacturers take advantage of this to display their branding, another advantage that sets this solution apart from most of the others on this list.
- It is a very secure way of packaging perishables like medicine and food
- It allows for branding
- It is sustainable
- Removing it is much easier compared to most of the other solutions
- It can be affected by temperature
- Without another solid cover on the top, it is easy for them to be breached by accident
Stand-Up Pouches with Tear Away Lids
Stand-Up pouches have made quite a splash in the food and beverage packaging industry for many years now. They are very handy as they can be resealed once opened, and this has made them very popular in houses as they can be repurposed for storing other items in the house. A majority of them are used to pack snacks like granola to candy, to hemp. However, their rise needed a solution that ensured no one breached them before they arrived at the consumer’s door.
Stand-up pouches now come with extra tear-away lids that seal them in tightly when they are manufactured and packaged. These tear lids cannot be reattached once they are breached, and this is to ensure that nothing happens to the contents of the packaging before they are delivered.
Another advantage of having these tear-away lids on stand-up pouches is the fact that they can be designed using all kinds of colors to further boost the aesthetics and branding of the product in question. They are also smaller in size compared to bottles and jars, taking up less space, making them good for the environment.
- They add an aesthetic notch to the pouches
- They are a fool-proof way of ensuring that the product is not opened without authorization
- They are metallic-looking for the environment
- They can be sued for a wide range of products
- They are not that strong and can be ripped apart accidentally
These are special seals that are made when thermoplastic materials are heated by induction process to create a thin lid that is then placed inside the opening of bottles before the main lid is added on top. This is a common tamper-evident packaging technique that is used in packaging medicine in plastic bottles. It is the clean and metallic-looking film that you see protruding from the bottle when you open it.
This design means that once the film is removed, then that means the medicine is ready to be used. If you happen to make an order and the bottles come with that part already removed, then there’s a very high chance that you may be handling contaminated medicine, and that should be set aside or returned until the issue is resolved.
Besides providing a tamper-proof way of keeping itchy fingers away, the film is also very adept at maintaining the freshness of the contents, and at the same time, it prevents any external agents from finding their way inside and contaminating the food or the medicine. This is why it is heavily used in the food and beverage industry as well as pharmaceuticals.
- It is a very reliable method of keeping perishable goods fresh
- It is a tamper-proof method of keeping pilferage at bay
- They provide a surface for branding
- It is not that strong. Once the main cap is removed, it is easy to pierce through the film with minimum effort
Tamper Evident Tape
This is a common type of security tape that is applied on huge foresight items. Once it has been placed on the surface of a package, any attempt at removing it will leave glaring evidence that someone tried to access the contents of the box deliberately. The tapes are designed to function in various ways.
Some leave a pronounced ‘void’ pattern behind, while others leave a checkered pattern. They are not strong enough to stop entry into the package,tamper-evident, but once they are opened, they provide all the evidence needed to show that the package in question has been breached.
- It is best suited for large packages
- It leaves a very distinct sign when someone tampers with it in any way
- It cannot be counterfeited
- It doesn’t really stop the package from being breached. It just indicates that the package has been breached.
Factors to Consider when Choosing a Tamper Evident Solution
Having gone through the many types of tamper-evident solutions that you can see for your packaging needs, now comes the question, what do you do to make the right choice that will work best for you? The following are some of the factors you can consider.
- Product Involved: Are you a food and beverage packager? Do you deal with medicine? Or are you in heavy freight and shipping? There are different solutions for every type of product and your choice should be determined by what you are dealing with. For example, a tamper-evident solution meant for medicine may not work for food packaging due to a combination of various chemicals.
- Material Used: Plastic will not work well with medicine; for instance, you will be better off using aluminum-based foils and lids for this kind of packaging. On the other hand, plastic-based lids and raps will do well for perishable goods like snacks and other food types.
- Ease of Packaging: You want a solution that will not force you to add an entire production unit in your manufacturing and packaging plant; that would be an added cost that you may not be able to meet. Therefore, go for a solution that is ready to go and easy to execute.
- Budget: As we have made it clear already, all these solutions work for different situations. What this means is that the cost of adopting them may not be the same across the board. Some are more expensive to use than others, and this could come down to the nature of the product you are planning to pack. High-value products require high-quality tamper evident security solutions. Food packaging, for instance, requires rigorous tests to be conducted before they are allowed to be used. Therefore, consider what you can afford first.
Benefits of Tamper Evident Packaging
There are many benefits that a company gets from using tamper-evident packaging solutions for their products. They include the following.
- It promotes product safety as it ensures the products reach consumers in one piece. On top of blocking any contaminants from getting in, they also ensure that no physical tampering takes place along the way as there will be evidence to show for it.
- They reduce damage to the product since most of these packaging solutions are made with solid materials that add an extra protective layer on top of the regular packaging solutions.
- They are a good way of ensuring quality control is adhered to across the board. Everything is scrutinized keenly across the board to ensure that by the time the product leaves the plant, it is up to standards until the consumer tears the safety labels off in their house.
- They increase customer loyalty and trust since it gives them the power to know when the packages they have ordered have been messed with or not. These tamper-proof solutions make it hard for counterfeiting to be done, and this is what makes customers feel safe enough to come back for more.
If you are thinking of getting into the packaging industry, you must embrace tamper-evident styles of packaging if you are to inspire confidence in your future customers. There are countless techniques that are used around the world. Take your time researching until you find the one that suits your needs. You can also visit our website to find all the information that may help you.