Avoiding the Red Tape
Sealing a cardboard box is the final step in keeping the goods inside protected during transit. In many cases, this is achieved by taping the box shut before despatch. The tape holds the box flaps securely in place and adds to the overall strength of the packaging.
In the warehouse, handheld tape dispensers are widely used to apply this finishing stage of the packing process. Whilst these dispensers do simplify the process, repeating the same movement time and time again can impact on workers.
Repetitive Strain Injury
Repetitive strain injury (RSI) is a common complaint in packaging teams and it is prevalent with those who use tape dispensers over long periods of time. Although investment in ergonomic dispensers can reduce the problem, those who suffer may feel sharp pain, tingling or numbness in their wrists.
RSI is a common cause of staff absence. It affects the joints and tendons, making it difficult to continue working. The symptoms typically lessen if you have regular breaks from the repetitive activity and wear joint supports, but these aren’t practical options in many warehouse environments. Over time RSI can cause stiffness, swelling and long term pain, which can prevent the worker from being able to undertake their job.
Whilst it is important to protect the goods inside the box, it is also important to protect packaging workers, so is there a way to avoid the (red, brown, black or clear) tape?
Eliminating the Need for Taping Guns
Removing the taping requirement can be achieved by addressing the issue at the design stage. As an example, folds and flaps cut into cardboard boxes can be used to great effect. With an alternative design, cardboard boxes can sealed and retain their integrity without the need for tape.
If you are concerned about the impact on your budget, let us reassure you. After the initial tooling set up, the cost of production for a more elaborate packaging box may work out cheaper than using a standard carton template and tape. If it can reduce staff absenteeism, the result is a much greater cost saving.
Another benefit of removing the need for tape is the environmental impact. Well-designed cardboard boxes, which rely on no other materials to secure, are straightforward to dismantle and recycle. This ensures that the same fibres can be reused many times over.
If a taped packaging box is necessary for your product, the application of adhesive strips during the manufacturing process could be the answer. Pulling off the cover strip is another repetitive task, but there is no additional weight pressing on the joints and it is easier to change position and continue working.
Self-adhesive tear strips are not only beneficial to warehouse packers; they also make it easier for the customer to open the package. By pulling on the tab, the parcel easily opens. This approach avoids customers using scissors and other sharp implements, which can cause damage to the products inside.
Aylesbury Box Company designs and manufactures a variety of tape free cardboard packaging solutions for our customers. Many have reported improvements in packaging efficiency when the taping guns have been removed from the process.
If you would like to discuss tape free cardboard packaging, get in touch with us today.