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Publication numberUS20040045860 A1
Publication typeApplication
Application numberUS 10/234,851
Publication dateMar 11, 2004
Filing dateSep 5, 2002
Priority dateSep 5, 2002
Publication number10234851, 234851, US 2004/0045860 A1, US 2004/045860 A1, US 20040045860 A1, US 20040045860A1, US 2004045860 A1, US 2004045860A1, US-A1-20040045860, US-A1-2004045860, US2004/0045860A1, US2004/045860A1, US20040045860 A1, US20040045860A1, US2004045860 A1, US2004045860A1
InventorsRandall Edgerly, Brian Brooker, James Cartwright, Terry Young
Original AssigneeEdgerly Randall L., Brooker Brian J., Cartwright James F., Young Terry N.
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Packages of stacked, individually wrapped, flat disposable utensils, and methods of forming such packages
US 20040045860 A1
Abstract
An integrated stack of individually wrapped flat disposable utensils (e.g., wooden spoons) and methods of forming the same. Preferably, adjacent layers in a stack of individually wrapped flat disposable utensil layers are bonded one to another by means of a removable hot melt pressure sensitive adhesive (PSA). The bond formed by the adhesive is such that the entire stack of layers forming the package is integrated in a manner whereby the bonds physically support the weight of the stack without separating. Such a bond, however, is releasable in that a user may exert sufficient force to separate one layer, or an individual one of the wrapped utensils in the layer, from another.
Images(3)
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Claims(22)
What is claimed is:
1. A package comprised of an integrated stack of individually wrapped flat disposable utensil layers, wherein adjacent layers in the stack are bonded one to another by means of a removable hot melt pressure sensitive adhesive (PSA).
2. The package of claim 1, wherein the layers include at least two side-by-side individually wrapped flat disposable utensils.
3. The package of claim 1, wherein the hot melt PSA has a 180 peel strength of less than 1.0 pli.
4. The package of claim 1, wherein the hot melt PSA has a 180 peel strength of less than 0.5 pli.
5. The package of claim 1, wherein the hot melt PSA has a 180 peel strength of less than 0.25 pli.
6. The package of claim 1, wherein the hot melt PSA has a 180 peel strength of about 0.15 pli.
7. The package of claim 6, wherein the utensil is a wooden spoon.
8. The package of claim 7, wherein the layers include a paper wrapper which is sealed about its general periphery to form a pocket for containing a wooden spoon.
9. The package of claim 1, wherein the utensil is a wooden spoon.
10. The package of claim 9, wherein the layers include a paper wrapper which is sealed about its general periphery to form a pocket for containing a wooden spoon.
11. A method of forming a package which comprises forming a stack of individually wrapped flat disposable utensil layers, and interposing an amount of a removable hot melt pressure sensitive adhesive (PSA) between adjacent ones of the layers in the stack so as to form a fugitive bond therebetween, but which bond integrates the layers of the stack.
12. The method of claim 11, which includes forming the stack from layers which include at least two side-by-side individually wrapped flat disposable utensils.
13. The method of claim 11 or 12, which includes employing a hot melt PSA having a 180 peel strength of less than 1.0 pli.
14. The method of claim 13, wherein the hot melt PSA has a 180 peel strength of less than 0.5 pli.
15. The method of claim 13, wherein the hot melt PSA has a 180 peel strength of less than 0.25 pli.
16. The method of claim 13, wherein the hot melt PSA has a 180 peel strength of about 0.15 pli.
17. The method of claim 13, wherein the utensil is a wooden spoon.
18. The method of claim 17, which includes forming the layers of a paper wrapper which is sealed about its general periphery to form a pocket for containing the wooden spoon.
19. The method of claim 11 or 12, wherein the utensil is a wooden spoon.
20. The method of claim 19, which includes forming the layers of a paper wrapper which is sealed about its general periphery to form a pocket for containing the wooden spoon.
21. The method of claim 20, which comprises (i) applying the hot melt PSA to a surface region of one layer, and thereafter (ii) stacking another layer onto said one layer so as to establish pressure contact with the hot melt PSA thereby forming a bond between said one and another layers.
22. The method of claim 21, wherein steps (i) and (ii) are repeated to form a package having a predetermined number of layers.
Description
    FIELD OF THE INVENTION
  • [0001]
    The present invention relates generally to packages and methods of forming the same. More specifically, the present invention is especially embodied in packages of stacked, individually wrapped disposable utensils and to the methods of forming the same.
  • BACKGROUND AND SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
  • [0002]
    Disposable utensils, such as flat, thin wooden spoons, are typically individually wrapped in a protective sanitary covering, such as a light weight paper. Such wooden spoons are typically supplied with edible products, such frozen desserts, yogurts, cottage cheese and the like at the point of sale to allow the consumer to scoop the product contents from the container and place it in their mouth.
  • [0003]
    Individually wrapped wooden spoons are typically provided in bulk in the form of a banded stack. That is, many layers of the individually wrapped wooden spoons are banded together (e.g., with rubber bands) to form a stack. Each layer in the stack may contain one, or more typically, several, wooden spoon(s) as may be desired.
  • [0004]
    As can probably be appreciated, banded stacks of individually wrapped, flat wooden spoons presents problems for the supplier and retailer. For example, from the manufacturer's perspective, the banding of a wooden spoon stack presents a labor intensive and time consuming step in the manufacturing process. From the retailer's perspective, once the rubber band is removed from the stack, the spoons become more difficult to distribute since there no longer is stack integrate in the absence of the bands.
  • [0005]
    What would be especially desirable, therefore, if non-banded integral stacks of individually wrapped disposable utensils (e.g., flat, thin wooden spoons) could be provided. It is towards providing such integral stacks that the present invention is directed.
  • [0006]
    Broadly, the present invention is embodied in an integrated stack of individually wrapped flat disposable utensils. More specifically, the present invention is embodied in packages and methods of forming the same, whereby adjacent layers in a stack of individually wrapped flat disposable utensil layers are bonded one to another by means of a removable hot melt pressure sensitive adhesive (PSA). The bond formed by the adhesive is such that the entire stack of layers forming the package is integrated in a manner whereby the bonds physically support the weight of the stack without separating. Such a bond, however, is releasable in that a user may exert sufficient force to separate one layer, or an individual one of the wrapped utensils in the layer, from another.
  • [0007]
    These and other aspects and advantages will become more apparent after careful consideration is given to the following detailed description of the preferred exemplary embodiments thereof.
  • BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE ACCOMPANYING DRAWINGS
  • [0008]
    Reference will hereinafter be made to the accompanying drawings, wherein like reference numerals throughout the various FIGURES denote like structural elements, and wherein;
  • [0009]
    [0009]FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a package formed of a stack of individually wrapped, flat disposable utensils in accordance with the present invention;
  • [0010]
    [0010]FIG. 2 is a plan view of the package depicted in FIG. 1; and
  • [0011]
    [0011]FIG. 3 is a schematic perspective view showing a manner in which the package of stacked individually wrapped utensils may be formed.
  • DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION
  • [0012]
    Accompanying FIGS. 1 and 2 show an embodiment of a package 10 comprised of respective stacked layers 12 of individually disposable utensils 14-1, 14-2 contained within respective wrappers 16-1, 16-2. In this regard, the utensils 14-1, 14-2 are depicted as being conventional flat, thin rigid spoons, preferably formed of wood or a plastics material, which may be employed to scoop out edible contents (e.g., frozen desserts, such as ice cream, yogurt, and the like) from a container of the same. For convenience of nomenclature, the utensils 14-1, 14-2 will hereinafter more colloquially be called wooden spoons, but such reference is non-limiting.
  • [0013]
    The embodiment of the package 10 depicted in FIGS. 1 and 2 shows a dual side-by-side utensil arrangement in that the wrapper 16-1 which contains an individually wrapped wooden spoon 14-1 is joined via material bridges 18 to a laterally adjacent wrapper 16-2 which contains and individually wrapped wooden spoon 14.2. More or less individually wrapped wooden spoons may however be provided in the package 10 in accordance with the present invention. Thus, single wrapped wooden spoon may be stacked to form the package 10, or more than two side-by-side wooden spoons may be provided in a stacked arrangement to form the package 10.
  • [0014]
    The wrappers 16-1, 16-2, which in the preferred embodiment are formed of a light-weight paper but could be formed of a plastics film material if desired, are sealed about their generally peripheral edges so as to establish pockets 20-1, 20-2 for containing the individual flat wooden spoons 14-1, 14-2. As such, the wooden spoons 14-1, 14-2 are maintained in a sanitary condition until the wrappers 16-1, 16-2 are physically opened and the spoons removed for use.
  • [0015]
    Important to the present invention, adjacent ones of the individual layers 12 forming the package 10 in accordance with the present invention are integrated one to another by means of a removable hot melt pressure sensitive adhesive (PSA). The removable hot melt PSA is thus one which forms a fugitive bond between adjacent ones of the stacked wrappers 16-1 or 16-2 without tearing or damaging the same. In this regard, as shown in accompanying FIG. 3, adhesive dots 22-1, 22-2 comprised of an amount of a removable hot melt PSA are applied to respective surface regions of the wrappers 16-1, 16-2 on an uppermost one of the layers 12 in the stack. (It will, of course, be understood that the removable hot melt PSA does not need to be in the form of “dots” per se, but could be applied to the wrappers in any geometric form and/or pattern as may be desired.) Thereafter, another layer (designated by reference numeral 12′ in FIG. 3) may be brought into physical contact with the pressure sensitive adhesive dots 22-1, 22-2.
  • [0016]
    On application of pressure, therefore, the adjacent layers 12 in the stack will thus be bonded one to another by means of the adhesive dots 22-1 and 22-2. The bond formed by the adhesive is such that the entire stack of layers 12 forming the package 10 is integrated in a manner whereby the bonds physically support the weight of the stack without separating. Such a bond, however, is releasable in that a user may exert sufficient force to separate one layer 12 from another.
  • [0017]
    Virtually any conventional hot melt (100% solids) pressure sensitive adhesive (PSA) that forms a fugitive (releasable) bond may be employed in the practice of the present invention. For example, removable hot melt pressure sensitive adhesives as described in U.S. Pat. Nos. 4,680,333 and 5,624,986 (the entire content of each being expressly incorporated hereinto by reference) may be employed if desired. Removable hot melt PSA's are available commercially from a number of sources. Most preferably, the hot melt PSA employed in the practice of the present invention will have a viscosity of between about 1000 to about 10000 cps at a pour temperature of between about 100 F. to about 400 F., and will exhibit a 180 Peel Strength (Mylar™ film substrate, 12 in/min) of less than about 1.0 pound per linear inch (pli), more preferably less than about 0.50 pli, and most preferably less than 0.25 pli (ideally about 0.15 pli). One particularly preferred hot melt PSA that may be employed in accordance with the present invention is 80-8669 adhesive commercially available from Henkel Adhesives of Lewisville, Tex.
  • [0018]
    As noted above, the hot melt PSA may be applied in any pattern onto the surfaces of the wrappers 16-1, 16-2 so as to form the desired bond therebetween. Suffice it to say that those skilled in the art can determine without undue experimentation the particular pattern and/or arrangement of the hot melt PSA on the wrapper surfaces to suit particular end use applications.
  • [0019]
    Therefore, while the invention has been described in connection with what is presently considered to be the most practical and preferred embodiment, it is to be understood that the invention is not to be limited to the disclosed embodiment, but on the contrary, is intended to cover various modifications and equivalent arrangements included within the spirit and scope of the appended claims.
Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US1745929 *Jul 23, 1927Feb 4, 1930Herman O GrimmeisenPackage
US2210195 *Nov 28, 1938Aug 6, 1940Charles C BaldwinPackage for merchandising chewing gum
US3991168 *Sep 9, 1974Nov 9, 1976Formax, Inc.Sheet interleaving of frozen food patties
US4680333 *Apr 14, 1986Jul 14, 1987National Starch And Chemical CorporationRemovable hot melt pressure sensitive adhesive
US4728572 *Apr 10, 1987Mar 1, 1988National Starch And Chemical Corp.Removable hot melt pressure sensitive adhesive
US5624986 *Oct 17, 1995Apr 29, 1997H. B. Fuller Licensing & Financing Inc.Hot melt adhesive having controlled property change
US5627229 *Mar 2, 1995May 6, 1997H.B. Fuller Licensing & Financing, Inc.Hot melt adhesive having controlled property change
Referenced by
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US8070013Jan 6, 2009Dec 6, 2011Dixie Consumer Products LlcCutlery utensil dispensing apparatus and method
US8152004 *May 2, 2006Apr 10, 2012Dixie Consumer Products LlcDispenser for disposable cutlery and components therefor
US8210364Nov 6, 2006Jul 3, 2012Dixie Consumer Products LlcDispenser for disposable cutlery and components therefor
US8297473Nov 7, 2007Oct 30, 2012Dixie Consumer Products LlcCutlery dispenser and method of dispensing cutlery
US8360273Oct 8, 2008Jan 29, 2013Dixie Consumer Products LlcCutlery utensil dispenser
US8701932Apr 7, 2011Apr 22, 2014Dixie Consumer Products LlcCutlery dispenser trays
US8776379Jul 22, 2011Jul 15, 2014Dixie Consumer Products LlcRemovable strip for packaging cutlery and related methods
US8839522Jul 22, 2011Sep 23, 2014Dixie Consumer Products LlcInterlocking cutlery and related methods
US9237815Oct 29, 2012Jan 19, 2016Dixie Consumer Products LlcCutlery dispenser and method of dispensing cutlery
US9266646Jul 30, 2013Feb 23, 2016Dixie Consumer Products LlcCutlery utensil dispensing package
US9295344Mar 15, 2011Mar 29, 2016Dixie Consumer Products LlcCutlery utensil dispenser
US9332861Aug 19, 2013May 10, 2016Dixie Consumer Products LlcCutlery dispenser and methods of use
US9345340Dec 9, 2011May 24, 2016Dixie Consumer Products LlcDispensing mechanism for utensil dispenser and related methods
US9439518Aug 19, 2011Sep 13, 2016Dixie Consumer Products LlcCutlery dispenser
US9560920Aug 7, 2014Feb 7, 2017Dixie Consumer Products LlcForward advancing cutlery dispenser
US20070056861 *Sep 15, 2006Mar 15, 2007Duis Donnie JOphthalmic lens package and methods of its use
US20070108141 *May 2, 2006May 17, 2007Dixie Consumer Products LlcDispenser for disposable cutlery and components therefor
US20070193968 *Nov 6, 2006Aug 23, 2007Dixie Consumer Products LlcDispenser for disposable cutlery and components therefor
US20080121650 *Nov 7, 2007May 29, 2008Dixie Consumer Products LlcCutlery Dispenser and Method of Dispensing Cutlery
US20090142006 *Nov 30, 2007Jun 4, 2009N.S. Flexibles, LlcMulticompartment bag having resealable opposed openings
US20100084418 *Oct 8, 2008Apr 8, 2010Dixie Consumer Products LlcCutlery utensil dispenser
US20110226797 *Mar 15, 2011Sep 22, 2011Dixie Consumer Products LlcCutlery Utensil Dispenser
Classifications
U.S. Classification206/504, 206/553, 383/37
International ClassificationB65D33/00
Cooperative ClassificationB65D33/008
European ClassificationB65D33/00H
Legal Events
DateCodeEventDescription
Oct 8, 2002ASAssignment
Owner name: HARDWOOD PRODUCTS COMPANY, LLC, MAINE
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNORS:EDGERLY, RANDALL L.;BROOKER, BRIAN J.;CARTWRIGHT, JAMES F.;AND OTHERS;REEL/FRAME:013374/0814
Effective date: 20020909