US 3446632 A
Abstract available in
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
w. P. LE VAN 3,446,632
FOOD MERCHANDISING PACKAGE FOR A TOASTER-HEATED FOOD PRODUCT May 27, 1969 FIG! 1N VENTOR. M44 YNE P. Le VAN A T TOPNEYS.
United States Patent US. Cl. 99-174 1 Claim ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE A food merchandising package for a toaster-heated food product includes a substantially rectangular sealed pouch of heat conductive priable metal foil insertable into a toaster slot with a portion projecting outwardly of the toaster. A pair of tear strips of insulating material extend in slightly spaced parallel relation transversely of the projecting portion and laterally to one side of the package, with a small clearance between adjacent edges of the strips, to provide insulated handling and pack age opening means. A food product is sealed in the pouch. One corner of the projecting portion is formed with a diagonally extending crease and the tabs are bevelled at their ends so that they substantially coincide with the diagonal tear line.
This invention relates to the packaging of commodities which are to be heated, while still in the package, before serving. More particularly, the present invention is directed to a novel handling and tear strip means for suchpackages by means of which the heated package may be withdrawn from a heating means, such as an electric toaster, grill, or the like, and opened without danger of the user being burnt or subjected to electric shock.
Various types of materials are used to package foods.- For example, many foods are packaged in heat sealable synthetic resin films. A sealed package of this nature usually will maintain food in proper condition for a quite substantial time or until the package is opened.
However, packages made of synthetic resin films are not particularly suitable when the food therein is to be heated directly, in the package and in the absence of liquid, before being served. Among such foods which are to be heated before serving while still in the package are the usual run of pre-cooked foods, which may be completely or partially pre-cooked. Such foods maybe packaged in synthetic resin film material when they are to be heated by being placed in boiling water, for example. However, when the packages are to be heated directly, as by placing over flame or by placing into an ordinary electric toaster, broiler, or the like, the synthetic resin type of films are not suitable.
For the packaging of foods which are to be heated by more or less directly applied heat, as by being placed in an electric toaster, metal foils have been used for providing a sealed package. Such foils may include, for example, aluminum foil and other types of relatively thin metal foil. One type of product which can be packaged in a metal foil package is the pre-broiled bacon disclosed and claimed in Zarotschenzeif U.S. Patent No. 2,807,550.
The advantage of a metal foil package for foods which are to be heated before serving by the direct application of heat is that the metal foil has a high heat conductivity and therefore ensures rapid and effective transmission of heat to the food sealed within the package.- Conversely, the very fact that the metal foil is highly heat conductive makes it difiicult for the user to handle the package, as may be necessary, for example, when removing the package from a toaster, broiler or the like. If the user attempts to grasp an end of a metal foil package ice which has been heated in an electric toaster, there is a very strong possibility of the user being burnt, as well as the risk of electric shock. Furthermore, tearing away of the end of a heated package made of metal foil or the like is rather difficult, particularly when the metal foil is hot or at a substantially elevated temperature.
An object of the present invention is to provide a food merchandising package for a food product to be heated,- before serving, as by placing the package in an ordinary electric toaster or broiler, and including novel handling and tear means projecting from the body of the package;
A further object of the invention is to provide a metalfoil food merchandising package for a food package to be heated before serving, and including heat and electric insulating means on a projecting portion of such package for the purposes of handling and tearing open the 'pack age.
A further object of the invention is to provide a metal foil food merchandising package for a food product to be heated, before serving, as by placing the package in an ordinary electric toaster, broiler or the like in which the metal foil package has a projecting portion, and a pair of juxtaposed, slightly spaced parallel strips of relatively stiff heat and electric insulating material extending transversely across the projecting portion and laterally beyond the side edge thereof to provide projecting handling tabs.-
Yet another object of the invention is to provide a metal foil food merchandising package, of the type just mentioned, in which the strips of heat and electric insulating material are made, for example, of bonded asbestos fiber.
For an understanding of the principles of the invention, reference is made to the following description of a typical embodiment thereof, as illustrated in the accompanying drawings.
In the drawings: 7
FIG. 1 is a front elevational view of a food merchandising package embodying the invention;
FIG. 2 is a sectional view of the package, taken on the line 22 of FIG. 1;
FIG. 3 is a partial elevational view of the package as prepared for insertion of the slot of an electric toaster; and
FIG. 4 is a somewhat perspective view illustrating the tearing off of the end of the package.
Referring to the drawings, the package is generally indicated at 10 as comprising a pair of parallel walls 11. The package is formed of a suitable metal foil, such as, for example, aluminum foil. Parallel walls 11 either may be separate sheets of metal foil arranged in superposed relation, or may comprise a single strip of metal foil folded over medially of its ends. The package has sealed side, lower and upper edges 12 extending inwardly to crease lines 13. Solely by Way of example, the commodities sealed within package 10 may comprise a series of prebroiled bacon strips 15, such as those produced by the method of the aforementioned Zarotschenzeff patent. It should be noted that all four edges of package -10 are sealed, thus forming a sealed enclosure for 'bacon strips 15, so that a complete food merchandising package is provided for a food product which is to be heated, before serving, as by placing the package in an ordinary household electric toaster, broiler or the like.
For this purpose, the width of package 10 may be of the order of that of an ordinary household electric toaster, but the height of the package 10 is substantially greater than its width so as to provide an upper portion 14 which will project outwardly of the toaster, broiler, or the like when package 10 is inserted thereinto.
As stated, when a food merchandising package such as the package 10 is placed in an electric toaster or the like, for heating of the food before serving, it is very difficult and dangerous to remove the package by grasping with the fingers and to tear the package open. This is due to the electrical conductivity of the aluminum or metal foil and to its high heat conductivity which latter is necessary to ensure proper heating of the food contained within the package. Therefore, if the user attempts to grasp the metal foil package after the latter has been heated, there is a likelihood of burnt fingers as well as the possibility of electric shock. Additionally, it is difficult, under the high temperature conditions, to tear open the package. The present invention is directed to a novel package in which these disadvantages are obviated.
Generally referring to the drawings, it will be noted that, as stated, package 10 has a portion 14 which, when the package is placed into an electric toaster, broiler or the like, projects outwardly of the heating device. In further accordance with the invention, a pair of tear strips 20a and 20b are secured to this upper portion so as to extend in slightly spaced parallel relation transversely of package 10. Strips 20a and 20b have a very small clearance therebetween as indicated at 2-1. The strips extend laterally to one side of the package to form projecting tabs 22a and 22b for ease of handling of the package.
While strips 2 a and 20b may be secured to either one or both of the walls 11, a preferred manner of attaching the strips is to bend the strips double and secure them to both walls 11, as by cementing, gluing, or otherwise bonding the strips 20a and 20b to the respective walls 11 of package 10. The strips 20a and 20b and made of a suitable heat insulating material which is substantially a nonconductor of heat and electricity. Consequently, there is substantially no heat content in the strips 20a and 20b even after the package has been heated to preheat the food contents therein. Thereby, the package may be easily handled by grasping the tabs 22a and 22b between the thumb and forefinger, both for inserting the package into the heater and for removing the heated package from the heater.
In order to open the package, it is merely necessary to grasp one tab 22a between the thumb and forefinger of the one hand and the other tab 22b between the thumb and forefinger of the other hand and then to relatively separate the two strips 22a and 22b to tear the package open along the separation line 21. The contents then may be easily removed from the package, with the latter still being handled by grasping the tab 22b.
Preferably, tear strips 20:: and 2012 are made of a relatively stiff material compared to the relatively pliable metal foil of the package 10. Suitable materials are asbestos-containing sheet material and the like. A particularly suitable material is that sold under the trade name Quinorgo by I ohns-Manville. This is a thin flexible heatresistant electrical insulation material comprising purified asbestos fiber and a small amount of high temperature rubber binder, and having high thermal stability as well as good dielectric strength. Thereby any possibility of the user of the package being subjected to electric shock by virtue of a defect in the wiring of an electric toaster or broiler is obviated due to the dielectric properties of tear strips 20a and 20b. Another suitable material is fiberglass.
To further facilitate tearing open of package 10, the package 10 is formed with a diagonal crease 16 extending from the left edge, as viewed in FIG. 1, to the upper edge thereof. The crease 16 forms an easy tear line, and the left ends of tear strips 20a and 20b are formed with aligned beveled edges 23a and 23b which are substantially coincident with crease 16. In suing the package, the corner of the upper portion 14 is torn off the crease line 16 before the package is inserted into the toaster. Thereby, tearing open of the heated package is greatly facilitated.
It should be understood that while specific mention has been made of a pre-broiled bacon package, the package of the invention may be used with other foods which are to be heated directly either electrically or by flame, and is not limited to heating bacon or the like. Essentially, the portion of the package below the upper projecting portion 14 should have about the size and shape of a slice of bread although it may be a little higher than the average slice of bread. Additionally, the thickness can be of about the thickness of a usual slice of bread. Suitable printing or the like may be impressed on the sides of the walls 11, if desired, and operating instructions can 'be printed on the tear strips 20a and 2012. For example, strip 20a may be labeled Tear olf corner before putting in toaster and strip 20b may be labeled To remove bacon, tear here and have an arrow pointing up to the gap between the tabs 22a and 22b.
While specific embodiments of the invention have been shown and described in detail to illustrate the application of the principles of the invention, it will be understood that the invention may be embodied otherwise without departing from such principles.
What is claimed is:
1. A food merchandising package for a food product to be heated, before serving, as by placing the package in an ordinary electric toaster or broiler, said package comprising a closed and sealed pouch of heat conductive pliable metal foil, having a pair of superposed substantially congruent walls having side and end edges, said pouch having a width of the order of that of a toaster slot and a length such as to provide a portion projecting outwardly of the toaster or broiler when the package is within a toaster or broiler; a pair of tear strips of insulating material extending in slightly spaced parallel relation transversely of said projecting portion to provide insulated handling means; and a food product sealed in said pouch; said tear strips being of relatively still and substantially self-supporting heat and electric insulating material, and extending beyond one side edge of said pouch to provide projecting handling tabs; said pouch being formed with a diagonally extending crease between the opposite edge of said pouch and the upper edge of said pouch across said outwardly projecting portion; said tabs being bevelled at the ends thereof such that they substantially coincide with said diagonal tear line; whereby said corner may be torn off before the package is placed in a toaster or the like.
References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,641,408 9/1927 Bainbridge et al 206-46 2,527,073 l0/1950 Port 229 2,779,462 1/1957 Hoag 206-46 3,185,372 5/1965 Ferraro 2293.5
A. LOUIS MONACELL, Primary Examiner.
W. R. BOVEE, Assistant Examiner.
US. Cl. X.R.