Walking through the retail marketplace, observing the myriad beverage packages and visualizing the process that created what now is being observed, the magnitude and complexity of the process becomes evident. Making the current observation and possessing years of experience, it becomes instinctive to make a breakdown of package components, visualize the detail of each operation in the process and analyze the domino effect that takes place whenever packaging changes are made.
Some examples will illustrate this point. First is the variety of closure sizes/types and the related standard or specialized equipment that could be required to close the package. Second is the wide range of container sizes, types and materials that might be required standard or customized machinery. Third is the various wrapping designs/concepts used to unitize the containers that obviously needed dedicated and/or flexible machinery for the operation. All of these represent the impact of packaging on the producing department in a beverage facility. The significant question in the packaging arena is: Why is all this important?