Packaging of products has become an art in itself over the years as manufacturers try to package their products such that consumer would be attracted to purchase the product. It is the science and art of enclosing products appropriately such that they would be protected while being transported, distributed, stored or put up for sale. Different products may require different types of packaging, and therefore the designer must ensure that the design of the package is able to protect, preserve and inform consumers of the contents inside. To conduct these processes of packaging and labeling, several different types of machinery are required depending on the types of product being packed. For example, a medicine bottle would have different type of packaging as compared to the packaging of a laptop. A bottle packaging would require machines that have the ability to drop the medicines into the bottle, cap it and then label it, whereas for the packaging of electronics would require machines that safely place the product in the packaging case, place any shock absorbers or Styrofoam that would lessen shock while being transported and then seal and label the product. Some common machines that are used during packaging can be labeling equipment, capping machines and bottling equipment. Although certain packaging processes may require manual labor, packaging equipment perform bulk of the packaging work in the industry today.
Several types of bottling or filling machines are available to match the needs of the ever changing industry that constantly requires new types of machinery to bottle products such as pastes, liquids, powders, tablets, capsules, etc. Machines that are used to bottle solid substances such as capsules and tablets may not be suitable for bottling liquids. Therefore, a manufacturer should do proper research on the machine that he or she want to purchase. Bottling equipment may be tabletop semi-automatic which are usually used in small scale packaging processes.
Capping is required for products that have bottles or containers as their packaged housing, so as to prevent them from falling out. Capping is equally as important as any other component of packaging as it ensures the quality of the product, safe transportation and adds to the look of the entire packaged product. Some of the several types of capping equipment include cap tighteners, automatic screw cappers and snap cappers. Rotary capping is the most common type of capping that is done on products. The container of the products requires having screws at the opening which would allow the cap that would have inverse screws to be tightened over the lid.
Labeling, just like the rest of the packaging processes, is very important for the product. A label has the ability to attract a consumer, provides information on the product and allows consumers to differentiate and identify with the product. Labeling can be wrapped or placed on top, bottom, front and back, print and apply labeling, etc. labeling machines, just like all other packaging machines, come in various configurations depending on the requirements of the package. Similar to bottling equipment, labeling equipment can also be for small scale packaging or for high speed large scale packaging.
Shrink wrap is a plastic wrap that is folded around packages on full pallets for added support during movement. Once the pallet is fully stacked with packages to ship, the shrink wrap is folded around the pallet and all the boxes. This forms a tight plastic barrier around the boxes and pallet holding them in place. Machines are available for shrink wrapping big pallets.