The history of what we know today as commercial packaging dates back thousands of years, though the goal has always remained consistent: preserve and protect goods, as well as provide easier ways to transport them.
Although historians cannot pinpoint exactly when packaging was first invented, they estimate that it started when people were more nomadic, traveling with tools and food on long journeys.
Packaging made of easily found natural materials began to develop like hollowed out gourds to carry water. Dried out skins of animals became carrying vessels for a variety of items and blocks of hollowed out wood were used as storage devices. Because these early humans were constantly moving from place to place, it was important their storage containers were lightweight.
Years later settled communities began to develop and several advancements helped ease the once hunters and gatherers way of life. With a larger demand for storage and transportation containers, materials used depended on the geographical landscape of the village. Woven baskets and shaped clay were good solutions to store crops, dry goods, and liquids for the winter or to protect the contents from dangerous animals. These devices also served as a more efficient way to transport larger bundles of goods to the village.
Villages became cities and the packaging technology continued to advance. Cities enabled people to trade goods with others while also giving them access to supplies and technology that wasn’t directly available in their home region. Soon they began to create more complex containers and eventually the wooden barrel was introduced. The versatility of the barrel made it possible to transport dry or liquid goods with relative ease and enabled people to conduct trade on a much larger scale than ever before. Many historians believe that the wooden barrel was one of the first forms of bulk packaging.
The Industrial Revolution replaced hand-made producers of products with machines that manufactured at a far higher rate with larger quantities than ever before. For this reason, manufacturers were pressed with the need for durable and high-quality packaging. Additionally, during the Industrial Revolution, more people migrated to the cities congregating in centralized locations lessening the need to export large amounts of product. This forced packagers to focus on individualized containers for goods rather than large bulk packaging and the dawn of uniquely branded goods for easy consumer recognition began.
It wasn’t until the 1900s that the packaging industry saw major development changes with the introduction of plastics. Plastic would prove to be a cheap and more hygienic way to package a variety of things. In the 1960s, polyethylene plastic became the preferred method for packaging products as it was easier to work with and less expensive. Though the widespread use of plastic worldwide over the last 50 years has led to a number of environmental issues due to its slow decomposition rate.
Build Rehabilitation Industries recognized these issues early on and began to focus on more sustainable packaging options decades ago, like most of the U.S. based commercial packaging industry. Although packaging made from recycled materials can be slightly more expensive than traditional plastic, the cost of sustainable packaging has become more cost effective and Build passes those savings onto their customers.
The packaging industry is consistently evolving and Build Industries is on the forefront of every change. For over 50 years, Build Industries has been serving the San Fernando Valley and greater Los Angeles area businesses with the efficient packaging and warehousing solutions that they need at reasonable prices.
To learn more about how Build Industries can help your business, click HERE to visit our website, or call (818) 898-0020!