What is Tamper-Evident Packaging?

Tamper-evident packaging (TEP) provides companies with peace of mind when it comes to sending, receiving, and stocking goods. This packaging lets consumers know if there has been tampering, removal, or other manipulation during the shipping and handling process, or even once it’s on the shelf. In the food industry, this is pretty important as it means the goods are no longer safe to consume.

There are many types of TEP for packaging, but no packaging is impenetrable or 100% secure. TEP can’t prevent tampering; it’s simply designed to deter it, and alert the consumer if it has happened.

The right balance

In the food industry, suppliers and stockists have the challenge of striking a good balance between tamper-evident packaging and accessible packaging. If your packaging is “too secure”, it may be frustrating to open when the consumer goes to use it, and they might not repurchase it in the future. It needs to be secure and easy-open, as well as incorporate your branding and comply with Australian Consumer Law requirements. As such, many food-based companies opt for custom-made packaging that can be all of the above.

Whether you go custom or ready-made, your choice will depend on product, postage and/or delivery circumstances (e.g., distance or cooling) as well as any specific packaging regulations for your industry.

Examples of TEP for food

You’ve probably been exposed to more TEP than you’re aware of. Some examples include:

  • A tamper-evident shrink band on products with a lid or cap. For example, the band you peel away in order to open an ice-cream lid.
  • Similarly, the ring attached to a beverage bottle’s cap will “snap” away from the cap if it’s already been opened.
  • Jars with a button-top security lid. This “pops” when the jar has been opened and won’t “go down” again.
  • Vacuum seals or clear shrink wraps are very evident once they’ve been opened.
  • Tamper-evident tapes with wording on them offer clear evidence of tampering. Some tapes leave wording on the package itself if removed. These generally used to secure boxes, envelopes, pallets, crates and bags.

Not a luxury — a necessity

Whatever you sell, your products are most-likely being handled many times after leaving your capable hands. This includes the packing process, shipping, and being handled on the shelf by potential buyers. TEP will help protect your product from opening (whether accidental or deliberate) during shipment and reduces the likelihood of damaged goods.

Although it’s not legally mandated in Australia, we believe all foods should have some kind of tamper-evident or tamper-resistant packaging. The most obvious reason is that your products are your business — you want to encourage repeat customers and avoid write-offs from tampered products. You also need to show consumers you’re protecting them and prioritising their health and safety as you project a positive brand image.

We’ll look after you

At Profile Packaging, we look after you, so you can look after your consumers. We have an outstanding team who know food packaging inside and out. We can advise on the right packaging for your needs, or explore secure, custom TEP that makes you stand out from the crowd. We’d love to share our knowledge with you — get in touch to see what’s possible.

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