Look! No dirty hands on your packaging cases and cartons

Major paper packaging supplier and AIPIA member, DS Smith has teamed up with Touchguard, a leading surface coating technology company, to produce corrugated cases with ‘safe handling zones’ to inhibit the possibility of passing on COVID-19 infections, as well as other microbial contamination, during transit.

While the companies say there is no evidence of virus transfer from cardboard, consumers are still taking precautions during the pandemic. A new Ipsos MORI poll shows that 57% of consumers now claim to wash their hands thoroughly after touching packaged groceries and household products through fears of safety, while 30% throw packaging away more quickly, according to the report in UK’s Packaging News.

DS Smith said the easily identifiable touch-safe zones can be applied at scale across a range of industries and applications meaning the anti-viral and anti-bacterial packaging provides an additional layer of protection as consumers and workers throughout the supply chain remain cautious.

Touchguard claims the new patented technology is effective across a range of bacteria and viruses including envelope viruses, of which Sars-Cov-2 (Covid-19) is a member. Also it says there is a proven bacteria kill rate of 99.5% in under 15 minutes on bacteria types and envelope viruses and eliminates the risk of person-to-person transfer of infections such as MRSA and E.coli.

Alan Potts, design and innovation director for DS Smith, said, “Whilst it would never replace good hygiene practices and due care, this technology has the potential to bring a real and proven additional layer of protection to our customers and their consumers as packaging moves across the supply chain. Importantly, this technology maintains the sustainability of our products and it is 100% recyclable.”

Julian Dugdale, the inventor and chief executive of Touchguard, added, “Our partnership with DS Smith provides us with an opportunity to bring our patented technology to the market at scale through its sustainable packaging offer. With its manufacturing reach across Europe and the USA and an extensive e-commerce and fast-moving consumer goods customer base, we will be able to offer a range of solutions to support changing consumer habits.”

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