US 3556337 A
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United States Patent Inventors John C. Harmon Par-ma, Ohio; Ronald L. Davis, Fort Wayne, Ind. Appl. No. 800,208 Filed Feb. 18, 1969 Patented Jan. 19, 197 l Assignee Peter Eckrich and Sons, Inc.
a corporation of Indiana PACKAGE WITH HINGE 13 Claims, 4 Drawing Figs.
US. Cl 220/31, 206/46; 99/ l 7 4i2 Q/ 0 Int. Cl 865d 43/16, B65d 51/10 Field of Search 220/30, 31,
60, 35; 206/46, Food; 99/714 References Cited 3,410,698 'll/l968 Sosin 3,437,199 4/l969 Jacobson Primary Examiner-George T. Hall Att0rneyI-Iofgren, Wegner, Allen, Stellman & McCord 220/30 206/46X(Food) 220/35x ABSTRACT: An integral one piece food package for stacked sliced luncheon meat and the like which has opposing shell halves joined by a hinge offset from the seam line. Each shell half has a peripheral flange projecting outwardly along the seam line and the hinge interconnects the flanges of the shell halves to provide an integral one piece package. A cooperating groove and channel system provides a weak snap lock along the seam line and, this in addition to the natural resilience of the flange and hinge, keeps the package closed when not in use. The channel can have a transverse depression rendering it peripherally contractible.
J'PATENTEUJANIQIQYI v Q 3556337 INVENTORS.
JOHN C. HARMON' RONALD L. DAVIS M I M 71:61!- BY I ATTORNEYS.
- rAcKAcewiTnnnvce BACKGROUND OFTH EINVENTION I.Field of the Invention This inventionrelates to preformed packages for sliced meatproductsand the like.
2.- Description of'the Prior Art A variety of various sizes and shapes of sandwich meat packages are available. However; so-far as is known, no comnierciallyavailable package has heretofore combined the advantages of low cost manufacture, easy stacking and hanging features, ease. in opening and reclosingjthejpackage. adaptability to receive sliced products from an automatic loader operating ata highrate of speed, improved label display sur While this invention is susceptible ofeinbodiment inmany different forms, there is shown in the drawings and will be Y The package is also provided with a locking system along the seam line 12. Referring especially to FIGSJ'Z and 3, the locking system is aperipheral snap lock defined by cooperating molded female and male portions of the shell halves '20 and 22 respectively. Accordingly,extending around the bubble portion of shell half. is a female, portion or groovelike depression in flange defining a shoulder'24 and an upstanding wall 26 where flange I4'joins'thebubble portion. Extending around the bubble portion of shell half 22 isa male or channel portion having a base 28 and an outer wall 30. Walls I 26 and 30 are slightly at acute angles relative to shoulder 24 and base 28 and are angled inwardly slightly in their upward extent to provide a snap lock to retain .thepackage 10 or 10a in a normally closed'position.
Referring to FIGS. 1 and 2, in r a -preferred form of the locking system, a formed area or cylindrical groove 40 traverses themale or channel portion of the snap lock system and extends at 42 into flange I2to thelineof adhesive 32. The
. groove and extension 'permit'slight contraction or flexing of the channelportion to a slightly smaller peripheral size for easier strap or ringing action and also permitsthe use of wider mating tolerances in the snap lock system which may result from material shrinkage or the like. Additionally, because the described'herein in detail a specific'embodimentand modit'h W cation of. the. invention-with; the understanding-thatsuch description is illustrative and not intended as limiting the spirit and scope oftheinventiom; 3 x
BRIEF DESCRIPTION 0 1 Drawings FIG. I is a perspective view of two forms of packages of this v invention;
FIG. 2 is a section'along line l ithro i'gh package 10a in FIG. 3 is an enlarged fragmentary section along lines 3-3 in FIG. I showing the locking system for the package; and i FIG. 4 isan enlarged fragmentary "section illustratinga modification of the packagehinge as used in package I0 of IFIGJ. a f V DESCRIPTION OF-TI'IE- PREFERREDEMBODIMENTS Referring,to,. the drawings, two'packa ges Land Itlaare shown in FIG',. I. The packages differ in that package is for containing roundslices of san'clwichfrneat and package we is for containing square slices and also in that different hinge systems are used in the two packages. The packages of 10 and 100 are each of one piece integral plastic sheet construction and can be readily formed by vacuum forming or other techniques. Preferably the material used should be a stiff, but
The package includes a pair of opposing shell halves 20 and groove eittends at 42 to the adhesive line. the groove can be used for evacuation of the package during closing and sealing in jvacu um pack operations. 1
' Also, in the preferred form, as seen in FIG. I, one of the flanges 12 or 14, can be p rovidedwi'thacutaway portion 44 for easier separation of the flanges duringopenihg of the package.
The package can beeasily loaded usingautomatic loading equipment to stack meat within the enclosure. The package is then closed and can be peripherally sealed using'suitable ad'- hesive as shown by stipplirig 32. Where the heat seal hinge I8 is used, adhesive 32 is not needed along' the hinge portion because the heat seal seals that portion. 'Vertical channels'34 onthe sidewalls'of the package prevent'pressure resistance due; toentrapp'ed air during loading of meat, permit better evacuation for vacuum packing and also prevent suction refsist'ance to removal of meat. The angular disposition of the 1 seam line 12 permits access to the edges of slices ofproduct all 22, each forming a portion of the enclosure for containing the food product. The shell halves can be opened. and closed along a seam line at I2 which is at an angle toand between the opposing top and bottom parallel surfaces of the package. Shells respectively which'face each other when the package is in its closed condition as shown in full lines in FIG. 2.
Flanges I4 and I6 are joined to each' other along one side 0r shown inFlG. 2,'Iiinge 18" comprises a heat seal line facially heat sealing flanges l4 and I6 to each other. In another form,
- moving the free or unhinged portions of flanges l4 and 16 away from each other as shown in phantom in FIGS. 2 and 4.
the way to the bottom of the stack of meat product within the package. A hanging port 36 is provided for. hanging the p'acka geffrom usual'display boards or racks. The angular 'dispositionof the flange 16 relative to the top andbottom surfaces of the package provides an angular and easily viewable display surface for. receiving a label such asat l6r'1.-The flat top and bottom surfaces of shell halves 2'2 and 20 permit easy stacking of the packages for display purposes without creating undue sideward shifting of packages within stacks.
I. A package for containing sliced stacked meat products or the like which comprises: shell means including a plurality of at least two shell members having walls forming an enclosure when closed along a seam line; resilient hinge means offset 'from said seam line joining said two shell members for movement relative to each other to open and close the package and urging the package to a normally closed'condition; said walls including top and bottom walls and generally vertical sidewall f means therebetween; outwardly projecting flange means on 20 and 22 are provided" with pei'iphei'al flanges I4 and 16 v the package by hinge means shown at I8 or 18a. In the form each of said two shell members extending around, the enclosure at saidseam line with the flange means of one shell member facing and abutting the flange means of the other shell member when the package is closed; and snap lock means along the seam line adjacent the junction of the flange means with the shell sidewall means comprising a shoulder below the flange means of one shell member in an upstanding wall projecting inwardly at a slight acute angle and spaced from said sidewall and a generally channel-shaped lip around the enclosure defining portion of the other shell member with its outer channel upstanding from the channel base at a slightly acute inwardly directed angle for engaging within and snap locking over the top edge of the wall upstanding from the shoulder of the first shell member. a
2. A package for containing sliced stacked meat products or the like which comprises shell means including a plurality of at least two shell members having walls including top and bottom walls and generally vertical sidewall means forming an enclosure when closed along a seam line in the sidewall means, resilient hinge means for opening and closing said package along said seam line and a plurality of laterally spaced vertical channels extending between the top and bottom walls forming grooves on the inner surface of the sidewall means.
3. A package for containing sliced stacked meat products or the like which comprises: shell means including a plurality of at least two shell members having top, bottom and sidewalls forming an enclosure when closed along a seam line in the sidewalls; outwardly projecting flange means on each of said two shell members extending around the enclosure at the seam line with the flange means of one shell member facing and abutting the flange means of the other shell member when the package is closed; and resilient hinge means offset from said seam line joining said two shell members for movement relative to each other to open and close the package and urging the package to a normally closed condition, said hinge means consisting essentially of a heat seal facially securing a portion of said flanges to each other.
4. A package for containing sliced stacked meat products or the like which comprises: shell means including a plurality of at least two shell members having walls forming an enclosure when closed along a seam line; resilient hinge means joining said two shell members for movement relative to each other to open and close the package along the seam line; outwardly projecting flange means on each of said two shell members extending around the enclosure at said seam line with the flange means of one shell member facing and abutting the flange of the other shell member when the package is closed; adhesive means on said flanges peripherally of the seam line releasably sealing the flanges in facial contact with the package in closed condition to seal said enclosure, and channel means extending from the enclosure interior at the seam line to said adhesive line for evacuation of air from the enclosure during sealing.
5. A package for containing sliced stacked meat products or the like which comprises shell means including a plurality of at least two shell members having walls forming an enclosure when closed along a seam line in the two shell members peripherally of the enclosure, resilient hinge means offset from said seam line joining said two shell members for movement relative to each other to open and close the package. snap lock means comprising male and female snap lock elements extending along said seam line and between the seam line and hinge means for releasably holding the package closed and means transversing said male snap lock member rendering the male snap lock member peripherally contractible.
6. The package of claim 2 wherein said walls include generally flat and parallel top and bottom walls and generally vertical sidewall means therebetween and said seam line is in the sidewall means in a plane between the top and bottom wall and at an angle to the top and bottom walls.
7. The package of claim 1 including a hanging hole in the portion of the flange means opposing the hinge means.
8. The package of claim 1 wherein said two shell members and hinge means are of integral one piece stiff transparent plastic material.
9. The package of claim 8 wherein the hinge means is offset from the seam line by a flange on each of said two shell members interconnecting the hinge means with the seam line and wherein said flangesand hinge means are of resilient material for normally urging the package to closed condition.
10. The package of claim 9 wherein said hinge means comprises a tubular element of generally cylindrical cross section extending along the flange edges.
11. The package of claim 1 including adhesive means on said flanges releasably sealing the flanges in facial contact with the package in closed condition to seal saidenclosure.
l The package of claim 5 wherein said rendering means comprises means defining a resilient yieldable area traversing said male snap lock member.
13. The package of claim 12 wherein said resilient area defining means comprises a groove.