Returnable Packaging Alert — The Top 10 Ways To Save Money On Heavy Gauge Thermoforming

While the most common type of thermoformed packaging for industrial applications is a heavy duty thermoformed tray, other options include clamshells, lids for returnable sleeve packs made from plastic corrugated, and pallets. Whichever you choose to use depends entirely upon what you want it to do. Choosing a method that conforms specifically to your needs can help save money in the long run, since your product will be packaged according to exact specifications. Here is a list of some other ways to save money using heavy gauge thermoforming:

1. Before placing an order, provide a sample of the product to be packaged to your supplier. This way, your supplier can design trays that meet the exact specifications of your product. You’ll also get a more accurate, better-designed initial quote.

2. Plan ahead. Because thermoformed trays are typically custom-made, it can take a bit longer to fill an order. If you wait until the last minute to order, you will incur a lot of charges that could be avoided if you planned ahead.

3. Determine whether or not you can stack additional weight on top of your product. If this is possible, your thermoformed trays will not need to be as deep. This means smaller trays made with less plastic, which means a substantial cost savings for you.

4. Order thermoformed trays that are stackable and nestable, so they will stack on top of each other when loaded with product, and nest inside each other when empty. These take up less space, are easier to store, and also can help save money on shipping costs.

5. Have trays marked with a one-inch stripe on their sides. This will help operators identify when a tray is fully loaded or empty, which can save time and labor costs.

6. Before production, ask for concept sketches and dimensions of your thermoformed trays. This way, everyone will be clear on what is required versus what is being ordered and produced. It there is an error, it is easier to fix during concept design rather than after the returnable packaging is already produced.

7. Make a production tool instead of a wood prototype tool for thermoformed trays. Prototype tooling is time consuming – it can take up to two weeks! Production tooling can be modified and adjusted, speeding up overall design and production time. This also saves from having to pay the additional cost of a wooden prototype, which is completely useless after the job is completed.

8. Once tooling is complete, evaluate plastic thicknesses by having thermoformed tray samples made. If your product can be supported by a thinner material, save money by ordering thinner plastic.

9. Stamp thermoformed trays with an identification mark with company name, address, phone number, and other important information. This will ensure the returnable packaging is returned to the correct address.

10. When you no longer need your thermoformed trays or they become obsolete, ask suppliers to buy them back for recycling. The price paid will be a scrap value, but anything is better than nothing!

In closing, heavy gauge thermoforming is a cost effective and efficient form of returnable packaging. These tips will help you communicate with your packaging producer and keep your costs to a minimum.

Top 10 Space Saving Catering Equipment

In the restaurant business and the catering industry there is a wide variety of catering equipment, appliances, and foods that move in and out of the commercial kitchen on a daily basis. It’s not surprising that space can become an issue. Here are the top 10 space saving catering equipment.

  1. Crockery Racks. A crockery rack, especially one that is mobile, is a very handy item to have in the kitchen. You can place it at the kitchen door to receive all the crockery that comes back from the customers and once it is full, it can be moved to the dishwasher to be cleaned. It keeps the crockery off the kitchen surfaces and tucked away in a corner.
  2. Dish Dolly. Dish dollies have a divider that is adjustable sometimes. It allows you to place stacks of plates and platters in this nifty unit while being able to move it easily from one area to another with its wheels.
  3. Freezer Crate. This is a handy unit which enables you to separate the foods in the freezer. For example you could have one crate filled with vegetables which you can easily remove from the freezer or fridge. At the same time you can quickly wash the vegetables in the crate.
  4. Glass Crate. Glass crates are fully stackable and are able to hold 30 glasses. Each glass is separated from the next which makes it ideal for transporting from one venue to another.
  5. Portable Ice Caddy. This is ideal for functions where you require ice storage as well as easy distribution of the ice from one table to the next. Look for an insulated ice caddy that maintains the cold temperature.
  6. Ingredient Bins. This is the ideal way to store bulk ingredients. Instead of having many small tubs or boxes of ingredients, pour all the packs of the same ingredient into one ingredient bin. This will save space and be easier to control.
  7. Storage Containers. Storage containers usually come in different sizes and are stackable. It is a great way to store food items. You could colour code the containers by means of the lids or label them for better management of the food items.
  8. Shelving Systems. If you don’t have any more storage space in the cupboards, then you could install shelves on the walls. Corner shelving units are quite popular while single shelves are also used often. You can store pots, pans and other catering equipment on these shelves.
  9. Insulated Food Servers. This is ideal for transporting or moving prepared foods. Place the foods in containers and put them in an insulated food server. It will remain warm (or cool) inside this unit. This storage solution allows you travel conveniently to the venue.
  10. Work Tables. Work tables with two or more shelves below the working surface makes for a convenient work station. While preparing the food, you can have all the catering equipment smalls and food items on the shelves below.

Top 7 Similarities of Business and Politics

Politics and Business are so similar in many ways. Sure politics is much dirtier and generally played by less ethical individuals and yet the similarities are often uncanny. Perhaps a brief point-by-point comment on this subject will open a new perspective on this subject. Below are a few similarities to help the thinking juices flow and allow some conceptual thoughts.

1.) In politics you must canvas the area using data about the voters; in business you use demographic software to gather information about the customer.

2.) In politics you must get the voter to make a decision to vote for your candidate; in business you must get the consumer to choose your product or service over your competitor.

3.) In politics you must employ multiple methods to reach the voter; In business any good marketing program uses multiple media, mediums and methods to reach the consumer.

4.) In politics you must show how your candidate is better and different; In business you must show how your brand is best.

5.) In politics you must get those people to the polls to vote; in business you must get those customers in the door of your business to buy something.

6.) In politics you must win or you are forgotten; In business you must beat your competition and the customer must buy from you or you go out of business.

7.) In politics the customer decides with his or her vote; in business your voter buys your product or service with his or her dollar.

I hope this philosophical discussion allows you to see business from a different perspective and if you are in business and considering politics, forget it. Business is a much better game than politics and as a politician might say; You Can Trust Me on This in 2006.