Title:
Carton having a pivoting dispenser
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A carton includes a dispenser formed from a spout pattern in a carton section and a spout section disposed within the carton section. The spout section and a pivoting portion of a carton end panel pivot outwardly to open the dispenser. A bag disposed within the carton can be partially drawn intact out of the carton when the dispenser is opened so that the bag may subsequently be opened.



Inventors:
Sweet, Frances (Concord, NH, US)
Application Number:
11/127340
Publication Date:
11/16/2006
Filing Date:
05/12/2005
Primary Class:
International Classes:
B65D5/72
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
DEMEREE, CHRISTOPHER R
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
WOMBLE BOND DICKINSON (US) LLP (ATTN: IP DOCKETING P.O. BOX 7037, ATLANTA, GA, 30357-0037, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. A paperboard carton blank for forming a carton, comprising: a paperboard carton section, comprising: a first end panel; a first side panel; a second end panel foldably connected to the first side panel at a first transverse fold line; a second side panel foldably connected to the second end panel at a second transverse fold line; at least one top flap extending across a first marginal potion of the blank; at least one bottom flap extending across a second marginal portion of the blank; and a spout pattern defining a pivoting portion in the carton section; and a paperboard spout section, comprising: a center section; and at least one side extension connected to the center section, wherein the spout section is constructed to be adhered to the carton section to cooperate with the spout pattern in the carton section to form a dispenser.

2. The blank of claim 1, wherein the spout pattern comprises: a first leg extending across the second end panel; a second leg extending along the first transverse fold line; and a third leg extending along the second transverse fold line.

3. The blank of claim 1, wherein the spout pattern defines the pivoting portion in the second end panel.

4. The blank of claim 3, wherein the spout pattern comprises a tear strip defining an upper edge of the pivoting portion of the second end panel.

5. The blank of claim 4, wherein a height of the center section of the spout section is greater than a height of the pivoting portion of the second end panel.

6. The blank of claim 5, wherein a width of the center section of the spout section is approximately equal to a width of the second end panel.

7. The blank of claim 3, wherein the center section comprises: at least one projection extending from an upper edge of the center section; and a cutout section adjacent to the projection.

8. The blank of claim 7, wherein the spout section further comprises a bottom section foldably connected to the center section.

9. The blank of claim 6, wherein the at least one side extension comprises: a first side extension foldably connected to a first side of the center section, the first side extension comprising a first stop; and a second side extension foldably connected to a second side of the center section, the second side extension comprising a second stop.

10. A carton constructed from the blank of claim 1, comprising: a bag disposed within the carton, the bag having a top portion adhered to the spout section, wherein the spout section and the spout pattern form a dispenser.

11. A method of erecting a carton, comprising: providing a blank according to claim 1; adhering the spout section to the pivoting portion of the carton section; adhering a top portion of a bag to the spout section; and folding the blank and adhering selected panels so that the first side panel, the first end panel, the second side panel, the second end panel, the top panel, and the bottom panel form a parallelepipedal structure.

12. The method of claim 11, wherein the bag is only adhered to the spout section.

13. A method of erecting a carton, comprising: providing a blank according to claim 3; adhering the paperboard spout section to the pivoting portion; forming a tubular structure from the blank by folding at one or more of the transverse fold lines; placing a bag in the tubular structure; adhering a top portion of the bag to the spout section; and closing the flaps to form a parallelepipedal structure.

14. The method of claim 13, wherein the bag is filled with a dispensable product before being placed in the tubular structure.

15. A paperboard carton, comprising: a first end panel; a first side panel adjacent to the first end panel; a second end panel adjacent to the first side panel; a second side panel adjacent to the first and second end panels; a top panel; a bottom panel; a paperboard spout section having a center section, and at least one side extension foldably connected to the center section; and a spout pattern defining a pivoting portion in the second end panel, wherein the center section of the spout section is adhered to the pivoting portion, and the spout section is constructed to cooperate with the spout pattern to form a dispenser.

16. The carton of claim 15, wherein the spout pattern comprises: a first leg extending across the second end panel; a second leg comprising a plurality of cuts; and a third leg comprising a plurality of cuts and extending parallel to the second leg.

17. The carton of claim 15, wherein the spout pattern comprises a tear strip defining an upper edge of the pivoting portion of the second end panel.

18. The carton of claim 17, wherein: a height of the center section is greater than a height of the pivoting portion of the second end panel; and a width of the center section is approximately equal to a width of the second end panel.

19. The carton of claim 17, wherein the center section comprises: at least one projection extending from an upper edge of the center section; and a cutout section adjacent to the projection.

20. The carton of claim 19, wherein the spout section further comprises a bottom section foldably connected to the center section.

21. The carton of claim 17, wherein the at least one side extension comprises a first side extension foldably connected to a first side of the center section, and a second side extension foldably connected to a second side of the center section.

22. The carton of claim 19, wherein the first side extension comprises a first stop, and the second side extension comprises a second stop.

23. The carton of claim 17, further comprising a bag disposed within the carton, the bag having a top portion adhered to the spout section.

24. The carton of claim 23, wherein the bag is only adhered to the spout section.

25. A method of opening a carton, comprising: providing a carton according to claim 23; removing the tear strip; pivoting the spout section and the pivoting portion outward, wherein the bag is partially pulled intact out of the carton during the pivoting; and opening the bag.

26. A paperboard carton, comprising: a first end panel; a first side panel adjacent to the first end panel; a second end panel adjacent to the first side panel; a second side panel adjacent to the first and second end panels; a top panel comprising a plurality of top flaps; a bottom panel comprising a plurality of bottom flaps; a paperboard spout section having a center section, at least one projection extending from an upper edge of the center section, a first side extension foldably connected to a first side of the center section, and a second side extension foldably connected to a second side of the center section; a spout pattern defining a pivoting portion in the second end panel, wherein the spout pattern comprises a tear strip defining an upper edge of the pivoting portion, and the pivoting portion is adhered to the center section of the spout section; and a bag filled with dispensable product disposed within the carton, the bag having a top portion adhered to the spout section, wherein the spout section is constructed to cooperate with the spout pattern in the carton to form a dispenser.

27. The carton of claim 26, wherein the bag is only adhered to the spout section.

28. A method of opening a carton, comprising: providing a carton according to claim 26; removing the tear strip; pivoting the spout section and the pivoting portion outward, wherein the bag is partially pulled intact out of the carton during the pivoting; and opening the bag.

Description:

BACKGROUND

Dispensing cartons are known. Such cartons typically have a top panel formed from flaps that are separable to open the top of the carton. The contents of the carton can then be dispensed from the open carton top. Such cartons, however, are not easily closed once opened, and do not provide for easy dispensing of the carton contents. One solution to this problem is to include a pivoting dispenser that can be opened for dispensing the carton contents and then closed for storage. Manufacture of conventional dispensers, however, often requires complex packaging and material processes.

SUMMARY

A paperboard carton blank comprises a carton section and a spout section. The carton section comprises a first end panel, a first side panel, a second end panel, a second side panel, at least one top flap, at least one bottom flap, and a spout pattern defining a pivoting portion. The spout section comprises a center section and at least one side extension connected to the center section, wherein the spout section is constructed to be adhered to the carton section to cooperate with the spout pattern in the carton section to form a dispenser. A carton constructed from the blank can include a bag or other vessel having a top portion that is adhered to the spout section. The bag may be drawn out of the carton intact as the dispenser is opened, where the bag may in turn be opened.

According to the first embodiment, a carton may be provided with a dispenser that is simple and inexpensive to manufacture. The spout section provides for easy opening and reclosure of the carton, and can be constructed from a paperboard piece that is adhered directly to the carton section. The bag can be mounted in the carton without complex sealing or joining processes, which reduces cost and complexity of construction.

Other aspects, features, and details of the present invention can be more completely understood by reference to the following detailed description of a preferred embodiment, taken in conjunction with the drawings and from the appended claims.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING FIGURES

FIG. 1 is a plan view of a first side of a blank used to form a carton according to a first embodiment.

FIG. 2 is a plan view of an erection step of the carton.

FIG. 3 is a perspective view of an erection step of the carton.

FIG. 4 is a perspective view of the erected carton.

FIG. 5 is an end view of the erected carton.

FIG. 6 is a perspective view of the carton dispenser being opened.

FIG. 7 is an end view of the carton dispenser being opened.

FIG. 8 is a perspective view of the carton dispenser fully opened.

FIG. 9 is an end view of the carton with the dispenser closed.

FIG. 10 is a perspective view of an opened carton containing a bag filled with a product.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

FIG. 1 is a plan view of an interior side of a blank 5 used to form a carton 150 (illustrated in FIG. 5) according to a first embodiment. The interior side will be disposed in the interior of the erected carton 150. The blank 5 includes a carton section 7 and a spout section 9.

The carton section 7 comprises a first end panel 10 foldably connected to a first side panel 20 at a first transverse fold line 21, a second end panel 30 foldably connected to the first side panel 20 at a second, interrupted transverse fold line 31, and a second side panel 50 foldably connected to the second end panel 30 at a third, interrupted transverse fold line 51. An adhesive panel 60 may be foldably connected to the second side panel 50 at a fold line 61.

The first end panel 10 is foldably connected to a first end top flap 12 and a first end bottom flap 14. The first side panel 20 is foldably connected to a first side top flap 22 and a first side bottom flap 24. The second end panel 30 is foldably connected to a second end top flap 32 and a second end bottom flap 34. The second side panel 50 is foldably connected to a second side top flap 52 and a second side bottom flap 54. The flaps 12, 22, 32, 52 extend along a top marginal portion of the carton section 7, and the flaps 14, 24, 34, 54 extend along a bottom marginal portion of the carton section 7. When the carton 150 is erected, the flaps 12, 22, 32, 52 close a top opening of the carton 150, and the flaps 14, 24, 34, 54 close a bottom opening of the carton 150.

A spout pattern 40 is formed in the carton section 7. The spout pattern 40 is defined by a first leg 36 extending across a longitudinally extending line 70, a second leg 48 extending collinear with the second transverse fold line 31, a third leg 49 extending collinear with the third transverse fold line 51, and a tear strip 44. The second and third legs 48, 49 may be tear lines formed from, for example, cut-space lines. The legs 48, 49 are shown as formed from 100% cuts (i.e., cuts that extend through the entire blank) in FIG. 1, however, partial cuts may also be used. The first leg 36 may be, for example, a crease extending between the second and third legs 48, 49. The first leg 36 may be formed in, for example, the exterior side of the carton section 7. The fold lines 31, 51 may be conventional fold lines formed by, for example, creases extending above and below the spout pattern 40, on the interior side of the carton section 7.

The tear strip 44 may be defined by a zipper cut or zipper knife 46 having spaced arcuate longitudinally extending sections that connect in the second side panel 50. The portion of the tear strip 44 extending into the second side panel 50 forms a graspable tear tab 45. The spout pattern 40 generally coincides with an area of the carton section 7 where the spout section 9 will be adhered, and defines a pivoting portion 42 of the second end panel 30.

The spout section 9 comprises a center section 72, a bottom section 74, and foldably attached first and second side extensions 76, 78. The bottom section 74 is foldably attached to the center section 72 at a longitudinal fold line 75, and has a downwardly extending arcuate section 80. The upper part of the center section 72 may have a contour that is complementary in shape to the lower part of the bottom section 74, which facilitates manufacturing multiple spout sections 9. The center section 72 includes two projections 82 separated by an arcuate cutout portion 84. The side extensions 76, 78 include respective stops 86, 88 that limit the outward extension of the spout section 9 from the erected carton 150.

The process of erecting the carton 150 will be discussed with reference to FIGS. 2-4. Referring to FIG. 2, adhesive is applied to either the exterior side of the spout section 9 or to the interior side of the carton section 7 so that the center section 72 is adhered to the pivoting portion 42. The bottom section 74 may additionally be adhered to the second end panel 30. As shown in FIG. 2, the bottom edges 96, 98 of the side extensions 76, 78 are generally aligned with the line 70 (shown in FIG. 1), and the fold line 75 may generally coincide with the first leg 36 (shown in FIG. 1) of the spout pattern 40. The projections 82 of the spout portion 9 extend slightly above the upper edge of the tear line 46 defining the upper portion of the tear strip 44. The arcuate cutout 84 extends below the upper edge of the tear line 46.

Referring to FIG. 3, adhesive is applied to the exterior side of the adhesive panel 60, or to the interior of the first end panel 10, or both, and the carton section 7 along with the spout section 9 is folded to bring the panels 10, 60 into contact. The resulting article is then “opened” or “set up” to have the tubular structure shown in FIG. 3.

The bottom flaps 14, 24, 34, 54 and top flaps 12, 22, 32, 52 are then closed. If the contents of the carton 150 are to be held within a bag or other vessel, the bag (not shown) is inserted into the partially closed carton before closing both the top and bottom flaps. An upper section of the bag is then secured to the spout section 9. The bag may be secured to, for example, the interior side of the center section 72 of the spout section 9. In one embodiment, the bag is fused to the center section 72 by a one inch diameter glue spot applied by a hot melt stick. The remainder of the bag need not be adhered to the interior of the carton 150, and the bag may be filled with a dispensable product, such as, for example, cereal, prior to erecting the carton.

FIG. 4 is a perspective view of the erected carton 150 having a dispenser 100. Referring also to FIG. 3, the carton 150 is fully erected when the top flaps 12, 22, 32, 52 are adhered to form a top panel 120, and the bottom flaps 14, 24, 34, 54 are adhered to form a bottom panel 110. FIG. 5 is an end view of the erected carton 150 showing the dispenser 100 in detail.

Referring to FIGS. 1, 4 and 5, the spout pattern 40 and the spout section 9 form the dispenser 100 in the erected carton 150. The second and third legs 48, 49 of the spout pattern 40 coincide with corners of the carton 150, and the first leg 36 forms a pivot for the pivoting portion 42 of the dispenser 100. The tear tab 45 may project outwardly from the corner of the carton 150 to render the tear strip 44 easier to grasp.

FIGS. 6-9 illustrate opening and closing of the dispenser 100. Referring to FIG. 6, a user grasps the tear tab 45 and pulls it across the second end panel 30 until it pulls off of the carton 150. Referring to FIG. 7, the arcuate cutout portion 84 extends below an upper edge of the opening formed by removing the tear strip 44. The cutout portion 84 allows a user to grasp the spout section 9, along with the pivoting portion 42 of the second end panel 30 that is adhered to the spout section 9, and pivot the dispenser 100 outwardly. The legs 48, 49 (shown in FIG. 6) are torn during outward pivoting of the pivoting portion 42. The projections 82 of the spout section 9, which are initially disposed within the interior of the carton 150, may be deformed slightly so that they clear the second side panel 30 during outward pivoting of the dispenser 100. FIG. 8 illustrates the dispenser 100 fully opened. The outward pivot of the spout portion 9 can be limited by the stops 86, 88 (only stop 86 is shown in FIG. 7) contacting the interior wall of the second end panel 30.

The dispenser 100 can be closed by simply pushing the dispenser 100 back towards the second side panel 30, as shown in FIG. 9. The projections 82 are illustrated as abutting an exterior surface of the carton in FIG. 9. However, the projections 82 may be pressed into the interior of the carton 150 to temporarily secure the dispenser 100 in its closed position.

FIG. 10 is a perspective view of an open carton 150 having a bag or vessel 200 disposed within the carton 150. The bag 200 can contain, for example, foodstuffs or other dispensable articles. The bag 200 can be sealed at its upper edge 210, and adhered to the spout portion 9 during erection of the carton 150. When the dispenser 100 is pivoted outwardly, the bag 200 is drawn out with the dispenser 100 and the upper edge 210 is accessible through the dispenser opening. The seal along the upper edge 210 may then be opened and the contents of the bag 200 dispensed from the carton 150.

According to the above-described embodiments, cartons can be provided with dispensers that are simple in construction, and that are easily opened and reclosed.

In the exemplary embodiment discussed above, the blank is formed from clay coated newsprint (CCN). In general, the blank may be constructed of paperboard, having a caliper of at least about 14, so that it is heavier and more rigid than ordinary paper. The blank, and thus the carton, can also be constructed of other materials, such as cardboard, or any other material having properties suitable for enabling the carton to function at least generally as described above. The first and second sides of the blank can be coated with, for example, a clay coating. The clay coating may then be printed over with product, advertising, and other information or images. The blank may then be coated with a varnish to protect any information printed on the blank. The blank may also be coated with, for example, a moisture barrier layer, on either or both sides of the blanks. The blank can also be laminated to or coated with one or more sheet-like materials at selected panels or panel sections.

In accordance with the exemplary embodiments, a fold line can be any substantially linear, although not necessarily straight, form of weakening that facilitates folding therealong. More specifically, but not for the purpose of narrowing the scope of the present invention, fold lines include: a score line, such as lines formed with a blunt scoring knife, or the like, which creates a crushed portion in the material along the desired line of weakness; a cut that extends partially into a material along the desired line of weakness, and/or a series of cuts that extend partially into and/or completely through the material along the desired line of weakness; and various combinations of these features.

A tear line can be any substantially linear, although not necessarily straight, form of weakening that facilitates tearing therealong. Specifically, but not for the purpose of narrowing the scope of the present invention, tear lines include: a cut that extends partially into the material along the desired line of weakness, and/or a series of cuts that extend partially into and/or completely through the material along the desired line of weakness, or various combinations of these features. As a more specific example, one type of tear line is in the form of a series of cuts that extend completely through the material, with adjacent cuts being spaced apart slightly so that small somewhat bridge-like pieces of the material (e.g., ‘nicks’) are defined between adjacent cuts. The nicks are broken during tearing along the tear line. Such a tear line that includes nicks can also be referred to as a cut line, since the nicks typically are a relatively small in relation to the cuts. The term “line” as used herein includes not only straight lines, but also other types of lines such as curved, curvilinear or angularly displaced lines.

In situations where cutting is used to create a fold line, typically the cutting will not be overly extensive in a manner that might cause a reasonable user to incorrectly consider the fold line to be a tear line. In contrast, where nicks are present in a cut line (e.g., tear line), typically the nicks will not be overly large or overly numerous in a manner that might cause a reasonable user to incorrectly consider the subject cut line to be a fold line.

The above embodiments are described as having one or panels adhered together by glue. The term “glue” is intended to encompass all manner of adhesives commonly used to secure paperboard carton panels in place.

The foregoing description of the invention illustrates and describes the present invention. Additionally, the disclosure shows and describes only selected preferred embodiments of the invention, but it is to be understood that the invention is capable of use in various other combinations, modifications, and environments and is capable of changes or modifications within the scope of the inventive concept as expressed herein, commensurate with the above teachings, and/or within the skill or knowledge of the relevant art.