Packaging is what we use to enclose and protect products for distribution, storage, and use. It acts like a coordinated system of preparing products for sale and end use. Packaging also is a tool that provides information for consumers. The way packaging informs helps marketers send messages to consumers and help portray the benefits a product provides. Packaging also provides security, convenience, and containment.
Have you ever wondered how packaging got its start? The first packaging used was made of natural materials and came in the form of baskets, bota bags, wooden boxes, pottery vases, wooden barrels, and woven bags. Paper used in packaging can be dated back to 1035, when vegetables and spices were wrapped in paper after they were sold to consumers. In the early 19th century is when iron and tin plated steel were being used to make cans. Also at that time is when paperboard cartons and corrugated fiberboard boxes were first introduced. Advancements made in the 20th century included transparent cellophane wraps and panels on cartons. These helped to improve food safety. Aluminum an other types of plastics were introduced as well.
Packaging provides many benefits for protecting and securing products. What started many years ago as a way to transport vegetables and spices, has grown into a multi-billion dollar industry. Packaging has made many innovations along the way and it will be interesting to see how it progresses further.