A correctly designed and validated package system is critical to ensuring that your packaged product is safe, reliable, and in compliance with industry standards. Above all the packaging used to transport your product to its end user must be able to function properly under a range of conditions, while protecting your product and performing as promised. Furthermore, well designed and executed packaging can mitigate risks, minimize material waste, and ultimately can result in significant cost savings.
What Is Package Testing?
Package Testing evaluates the package design performance of a packaged product prior to shipment. This includes packaging materials, packaging components, primary packaging, shipping containers, unit loads, and other key packaging characteristics. During transit and prior to reaching the end user, packaging materials must be able to withstand a variety of stressors experienced during the shipping process. Package testing is utilized to determine how well the package system used will be able to protect the contained packaged products during this process, by simulating the conditions experienced in the distribution environment.
How We Test Your Packaged Products Package System
Cold Chain Validation
Cold Chain Validation is achieved under thoroughly controlled conditions and ultimately confirms that a process delivers results that meet a predetermined set of acceptance criteria. There are two key critical variables involved in heat transfer that should be considered when designing cold chain packaging: time and temperature differential. In any particular distribution process, if there is exercised control over both the length of transit and the external temperature of the distribution environment, cold chain validation would be dependent upon the specific product requirements and the thermal technology used.
Distribution Testing is the evaluation of stressors on the physical product, materials, and containers that secure them during transit. A series of tests may be used to emulate the distribution environment of any given product. Distribution simulation replicates the common hazards encountered during the shipping and transportation of any given product, as those goods are distributed from production and ultimately are delivered to the end user. Deploying a variety of tests such as vibration, compression, impact, and drop testing with controlled, repeatable settings ensures an accurate depiction of how any given product will be able to withstand the distribution environment.
E-Commerce has evolved and risen significantly, presenting online retailers with new challenges as their packaged products are transported to their end destination. Package testing and validation protocols are critical to identifying weaknesses, addressing supply chain issues, and reducing damages incurred through transit. Whether products are sold directly to the consumer or through a third party platform or vendor, identifying and simulating the shipping environment hazards products face en route to the customer can ensure that the appropriate packaging is in place to withstand the demands faced in distribution.
Hazardous Goods Testing
Any packaged hazardous material requires compliance with regulatory standards to ensure containment of the material through the entire distribution cycle. Packaging safety requirements set forth by the Department of Transportation (DOT) and International Air Transport Association (IATA) govern the transportation of hazardous goods by ground and air. Shipments containing hazardous goods must be packaged in performance packaging consisting of inner and outer packaging designed, tested, and certified for the containment of hazardous materials. These packaging systems can then be identified by United Nations (UN) markings specifying the certification for containment of specific hazardous material classes and packing groups.
The International Safe Transit Association (ISTA) is a members led organization committed to creating a world-class data repository to better model distribution locally, nationally, and internationally. Developing procedures and protocols, according to which packaged products are tested and validated, ISTA is revered as the certification standard for package testing for distribution. ISTA’s Testing Protocol remains a series of testing methodologies well recognized within the packaging community, including prominent e-commerce retailers such as Amazon.com and club stores like Sam’s Club.
Package Integrity Testing
Package Integrity Testing is the evaluation of packaging to meet the desired amount of protection or containment of the packaging components. The physical capability of the packaging is evaluated to measure the protection of the package’s contents. This is performed by measuring: microbiological, chemical, product, and barrier attributes. Testing for package integrity provides assurance that a package is sealed properly, the product within is contained, and foreign contaminants remain outside the packaging system.
Why Purple Diamond?
Package Testing is completed on site at Purple Diamond and can be tailored to your specific testing needs. By testing for your packaged product’s specific packaging needs, we can simulate the conditions that your packaged goods will be exposed to during distribution. Purple Diamond is able to test packaged products as a single unit or as part of a full pallet load. Our engineers work with you throughout the entire testing process to address any concerns, consult alongside you to offer recommendations, and ultimately help you create the best packaging for your product.
Purple Diamond follows the testing standards and protocols set forth by organizations such as ASTM, ISTA, and TAPPI. Our team is committed to delivering high-quality results as we develop a comprehensive solution to your specific package testing needs.