Packaging is an ancient practice that is as old as mankind. Man in the beginning used the naturally available materials for packaging. Leaves, barks, and hides were the first to be used. Later man started making containers from these materials by weaving or sewing together reeds, skins, barks, wood and anything that could be held together to form a container of some kind. When man discovered pottery, it revolutionised packaging and most packaging was done using the clay materials. It should be noted that at this time, food was basically the only thing that needed to be packaged; this included water.

With man’s advancement and growth in industrialization, man started acquiring more and more belongings and many things were invented that required packaging. Packaging was mostly used for protection and containment within the home or market place. Later, packaging became more advanced when shipping became important. From this time, we have seen the creation of some award winning packaging innovations.

An award winning innovation will be able to efficiently contain the intended items without much strain. The building materials should not break at the effort of containing the items; therefore the building materials should be strong enough and the container should avail enough space within for the items to be packaged. The building material should also not be a hazard to the contents and the contents should also not be a hazard to the building material e.g. paper based packaging such as cardboard boxes cannot be used to package liquids and plain wood or hard material cannot be directly used to package glass items.

Award winning packaging will also be cost effective. They will not be made up expensive material that will eventually make them expensive to purchase. Packaging is a temporary item that is used for a short time then discarded. Expensive packaging is not very logical. It should not also make the shipping costs shoot up due to its weight and size. Award winning packaging is light and occupies minimal space.

Another crucial thing about award winning packaging is the effect of the packaging to the environment. Materials that deplete the environment of its natural resources are not good; instead, materials that can be recycled easily are preferred. Materials which are harmful to the environment when disposed are also not good. Packaging materials should cause minimal or no adverse effects to the environment.

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