|Publication number||US20070102317 A1|
|Application number||US 11/269,099|
|Publication date||May 10, 2007|
|Filing date||Nov 8, 2005|
|Priority date||Nov 8, 2005|
|Also published as||EP1971534A1, WO2007056693A1|
|Publication number||11269099, 269099, US 2007/0102317 A1, US 2007/102317 A1, US 20070102317 A1, US 20070102317A1, US 2007102317 A1, US 2007102317A1, US-A1-20070102317, US-A1-2007102317, US2007/0102317A1, US2007/102317A1, US20070102317 A1, US20070102317A1, US2007102317 A1, US2007102317A1|
|Inventors||John Crawford, Jeffrey Mayers, Camilo Bouzas|
|Original Assignee||Colgate-Palmolive Company|
|Export Citation||BiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan|
|Referenced by (8), Classifications (7), Legal Events (1)|
|External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet|
This invention relates to a thermoformed package that can be easily opened. More particularly this invention relates to a thermoformed package that can easily be opened without the aid of any tools or similar aids.
Many products are packaged in thermoformed packaging. Such packaging provides significant security against theft of the packaged item since it is difficult to remove the packaged item without the use of tools such as scissors or knives. Consequently pilfering of goods at the retail level is considerably reduced. Further such thermoformed packaging can be displayed in many ways. These include sitting on a shelf or being held on a hook. They also can be locked onto a hook. This allows them to be displayed but yet to be secured. However the negative aspect is that the purchaser has a difficult time in opening the package to remove the purchased item. A tool such as a scissors or a knife is needed. Then the thermoformed package must carefully be cut and destroyed to remove the item. This all assumes that the purchaser has the strength and the dexterity to use the tools to open the package. Consequently the problem to be solved is how to provide a secure thermoformed package for the item but yet not frustrate the purchaser in opening the package.
This problem has been addressed in the prior art. In U.S. Pat. No. 5,180,599 and U.S. Pat. No. 6,436,499 a peelable adhesive is used between the two thermoformed layers. The adhesive will yield when the sections of the thermoformed package are pulled apart. U.S. Pat. No. 6,135,304 and U.S. Pat. No. 6,276,529 disclose packages where there is a weakened area which will sever upon the application of a force. Once the weakened area is severed the package can be opened. U.S. Pat. No. 5,018,622 discloses a thermoformed package having a front blister, a rear blister and a header. The header has a front layer and a rear layer with the front layer attached to the front blister and the rear layer attached to the rear blister. There is a slit in the rear layer that permits a person to grip the rear layer to assist in peeling it away from the front layer. The fingers of one hand grip the front layer and those on another hand grip the slit of the rear layer to exert a peeling force. However this does not provide a sufficient grip to open the package. The person's fingers will slip on the plastic of the package.
The present package solves the problem and provides a convenient way to open a thermoformed package. This particularly is useful in environments where a person's hands are wet or may have a coating of a friction reducing substance such as a soap. The present package provides for a positive gripping of the thermoformed layers or sections so that they can be pulled apart.
The invention comprises a package comprising a body portion having a first section and a second section, a peripheral edge on the first section and the second section and substantially surrounding the body portion, and an extension of the peripheral edge of the first section and the second section on at least one part thereof The extension of the peripheral edge of the first section and the second section having an aperture therein, the aperture of the first section and the second section preferably being in alignment. The apertures most conveniently are of a size and shape to accept the fingers of a person. Further in a preferred embodiment the extension of the peripheral edge of the first section and of the second section are separate and are not bonded together. In a yet further preferred embodiment the peripheral edge of the first section and of the second section are splayed in opposite directions.
The first section and the second section can have a similar or a different shape. The shape of the first section and the second section will be determined by the items to be packaged. Preferred items to be packaged are soap bars.
The packages preferably are produced using a thermoforming process where the first section and the second section are molded separately. The two sections are then filled with the items to be packaged and the package sealed along the peripheral edge. When the packaged item is a liquid that sets to a solid or other form, the first section and second section are sealed together and the liquid inserted through a fill opening which subsequently is sealed. The package extension of the peripheral edge of the first section and the second section are not sealed together. To open the package a finger is placed through the aperture in the first section and in the second section and the sections are pulled away from each other. Once the package is opened the item is removed and the package can be discarded.
The invention will now be disclosed in more detail in its preferred embodiments with reference to the drawings. The present invention is susceptible to modifications of the incorporated concepts, all of which are within the present invention.
The embodiment of
The packaging material for the first section and the second section can be essentially any thermoplastic. These include olefinic polymers and copolymers of ethylene, propylene, butenes and butadiene. A further class of useful thermoplastics are polyesters such as polyethylene terephthalate. In addition styrenic polymers and copolymers can be used. These can be laminates or single films. The first section 12 and the second section 14, each along with their respective peripheral edges 16 and 15, are separately molded. At this point if the item to be packaged is a solid it can be placed into the first section 12 or the second section 14 and the peripheral edges 16, 15 of the first section 12 and the second section 14 sealed to form the package around the item. If the item to be packaged is a liquid the peripheral edges 15, 16 are sealed with a small fill opening left open. The package then is filled and the fill opening sealed. The liquid in the package can remain a liquid, convert to a gel, or convert to a solid. In a preferred process of packaging soap bars the package is formed leaving a fill opening. A liquid soap composition that will set to a solid is filled into the package and the fill opening sealed. Over a period of several hours the liquid soap composition converts to a solid. In this embodiment the package serves as both mold and the final package for the soap bar.
|Citing Patent||Filing date||Publication date||Applicant||Title|
|US7584846||Dec 21, 2007||Sep 8, 2009||S.C. Johnson & Son, Inc.||Shaped packaging for a refill|
|US8038006 *||Nov 7, 2008||Oct 18, 2011||Astrazeneca||Blister-type packaging for inhalers|
|US8235213||Oct 1, 2008||Aug 7, 2012||Astrazeneca Ab||Package|
|US8371449||Jul 27, 2011||Feb 12, 2013||Astrazeneca||Package|
|US8662302 *||Aug 29, 2012||Mar 4, 2014||Jan R. Lau||Packaging for energy foods or other substances|
|US20130284629 *||Apr 27, 2012||Oct 31, 2013||Perfecseal, Inc.||Packaging for a Size Varying Series of Femoral Stem Components for Artificial Hip Joints|
|EP2214973A1 *||Nov 13, 2008||Aug 11, 2010||Nestec S.A.||Bottom opening pouches and consumer products made using such pouches|
|WO2013156747A2 *||Apr 18, 2013||Oct 24, 2013||Lirage Investments Ltd||Improvements in or relating to packaging|
|U.S. Classification||206/470, 206/471|
|Cooperative Classification||B65D75/32, B65D75/5855|
|European Classification||B65D75/32, B65D75/58F|
|Nov 8, 2005||AS||Assignment|
Owner name: COLGATE-PALMOLIVE COMPANY, NEW YORK
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNORS:CRAWFORD, JOHN C.;MAYERS, JEFFREY;BOUZAS, CAMILO;REEL/FRAME:017214/0903
Effective date: 20051104