World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Folding carton

Article Id: WHEBN0011323810
Reproduction Date:

Title: Folding carton  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Clamshell (container), Packaging and labeling, Orbital stretch wrapping, Packaging, Boston round (bottle)
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Folding carton

Typical blank for folding carton

The folding carton created the packaging industry as it is known today, beginning in the late 19th century. Basically, a folding carton is made of paperboard, and is cut, folded, laminated and printed for transport to packagers. The cartons are shipped flat to a packager, which has its own machinery to fold the carton into its final shape as a container for a product. The classic example of such a carton is a cereal box.

Invention and development

In the 1840s, cartons were made by hand and held together with tacks and string, and used only for expensive items (such as jewelry). Although Charles Henry Foyle is described by some as the "inventor" of the paper carton, mass production of the cartons was invented, partly by accident, at the Robert Gair Company in Brooklyn, New York. Machinery at the end of the press had been set up carelessly by a pressman, and machinery cut through the material. This ruined the press but gave them an idea: printing and cutting could be done with one machine. Previously, cutting of printed cardboard had been done manually. From the mistake in 1879, Gair developed a process for mass production of boxes. In 1897, the National Biscuit Company (Nabisco) became the first large company to adopt the new cartons, for Uneeda Biscuits. Other manufacturers soon followed. With inexpensive packaging now even common items could be placed in a showy carton and each carton became its own advertisement. The product was also protected, and the contents had a longer shelf life. This trend was to continue with force, through the 20th century. This could be seen as a contributing factor in the so-called 'throwaway' culture of America. The environmental impact of product packaging has gained attention from consumers and businesses alike, and this awareness has created a steady trend since the mid to late 1990s, on the part of manufacturers, to use recycled material and/or reduce overall materials usage.

Product characteristics

Folding cartons are now a $80 billion industry. Typically, cylinder board made from pulp from reprocessed scrap paper is used for most packages. Cartons for food are made from a higher grade and lighter solid sulfate board. Because of the limitations of cutting machinery, the thickness of the board is limited to 0.81 mm (0.032 in), and folding cartons are generally limited to holding a few pounds or kilograms of material.

See also


  • Hanlon, Kelsey, and Forcinio; Handbook of Package Engineering (CRC Press, 1998)
  • Soroka, W, "Fundamentals of Packaging Technology", IoPP, 2002, ISBN 1-930268-25-4
  • Yam, K. L., "Encyclopedia of Packaging Technology", John Wiley & Sons, 2009, ISBN 978-0-470-08704-6

External links

  • - Folding Carton History on the Paperboard Packaging Council website
  • - National Carton: How to Measure a Folding Carton
This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.