Specifying Boxes For International Shipments

Steve asks:

We have a customer who imports garments from both China and Pakistan.
Although the boxes are made out of triple wall, they are collapsing and bulging. There is no designation as to the grade of triple wall or strength.

We compared a similar size sheet of domestic 67 ECT with both the Pakistan and China sheets and the U.S. sample weighed 1.7 oz., China 1.4 oz., and Pakistan 1.2 oz. The interior liners appear to be the same as the medium.

Our customer repacks the same quantity of goods in a 48 ECT box and has no problems. He is asking us what he needs to specify to his overseas suppliers, so he will get his product here in reasonable shape.

Two questions every box buyer asks. Will the box last to the end of the distribution cycle and how much does it cost? Most corrugated boxes from the countries you stated are doublewall and triplewall. Because of poor fibre and less than stellar combining and converting operations, they do not make the journey well.

Before we can make a suggestion that is both cost effective and provides suitable structural reliability, we need to ask a few questions. Are we talking about ocean transport in containers or planes? What are the normal transport and storage times? How are they arranged on the pallets? What is the stacking pattern? Are they hand loaded and unloaded or by fork lift? What are the typical temperature and humidity conditions and swings over time? Are WRA or WPA used? Are there any functional coatings available to the box manufacturers?

All of these variables contribute to creating the optimum packaging solution for your customer. Over engineering will add unnecessary fibre and cost to the project and won’t provide the most favorable solution for your customer. So once we answer these questions we can work toward providing the correct solution for your customer.

— Ralph

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One Response to “Specifying Boxes For International Shipments”

  1. oxboxusa Says:

    Your customer should specify a minimum ECT and board caliper based on box size, weight of contents and stacking requirements.

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