Packaging can be defined as “the science, art and technology of enclosing or protecting products for distribution, storage, sale, and use”. Packaging also refers to “the process of design, evaluation, and production of packages”.
Packaging can be regarded as different types. The single item such as a bottle containing soft drink can be regarded as the item that a consumer would purchase known as “primary” packaging. Where as a pack of bottles, shrink wrapped, would be regarded as the transport package used within the distribution chain is known as “secondary” packaging.
Primary packaging is the material that first contains the product. This is usually the package which is in direct contact with the contents. For example, this could be a bottle or carton for liquids; or a packet for various snack foods.
The secondary packaging is outside the primary packaging, perhaps used to group primary packages together. For example, this could be a tray and shrink film. Secondary packaging is mainly used as a means of transporting the primary packs or product from producer to retailer. This is usually removed and recycled once the pack has reached its destination. Secondary packaging can also be retained to enable the product to be purchased in bulk.