Wednesday, April 14, 2010

A Cure for Wrap Rage

by Rich Lindgren, CPP - Chainalytics
Wrap Rage, at one point or another we’ve all experienced it- a heightened level of anger and frustration resulting from the inability to open hard-to-remove thermoformed packaging, particularly plastic blister packages and clamshells. In addition to the anger and frustration, I think we have all felt the pain as well. Yes, the literal pain of opening the package. According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, an average of 6,000 people a year end up in the ER after trying to open these packages. Reported injuries include cut fingers and sprained wrists, from tools used to open packages and from the packaging itself. Usually caused by the solid perimeter seal used on these packages often by processes of heat sealing the 2 halves of plastic.
No weaponry needed. This Logitech mouse packaging has a perforated corner you bend, splitting the seam in two. (And clamshells for some batteries are now precut on one side; you just peel the plastic back.)

While many retail store's tamper and theft deterrent policies require a solid seal on these packages, not all products that use this packaging are subject to this. There are many alternative closure methods that do no require the jaws of life to open a thermoformed package. Spot welding or friction fit closures protect the product just as well and keep the package closed until needed to be opened by consumer. Also, on products that require solid edge sealing, perforated back panels can be designed so customers have other options for removing what they really want; the product! Most companies put little thought into the customer experience once you leave the store, just a little thought and design effort would go a long way!!!

Another option to cure Wrap Rage is to purchase a ZIPIt Clamshell Opener. The ZIPIt is a battery-operated, handle-held device designed to tear through those clamshell packaging cases like a hot knife through butter. Check out the commercial for the ZIPit….


  1. Just another commercial gimmick, I think companies just need to come up with better packaging designs, instead of putting the onus on their customers that pay good money for their products!

  2. Dangerous product, little ones fingers can easily get caught in between the two rolling blades!

  3. Down With ClamshellsApril 29, 2010 at 1:52 PM

    I would be curious to see what kind of package the "Zip-it" actually comes in???

  4. YOu know why Logitech had to change their packaging? because people kept injuring themselves on it... I know, I am one of their victims. Clamshell packaging should be banned.


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