Title:
Packaging for Foodstuffs
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
For packaging foodstuffs or semi-luxury goods, the invention proposes packaging in which a protective packaging means (21) contains an inner packaging means (11) which contains the material to be packaged. The two packaging means are each produced from a strip (3, 13) by the strip being guided together to form a flexible tube (14). The inner packaging means is connected, in the region of its one end, to the outer packaging means such that, when the outer packaging means, which constitutes a protective packaging means, is torn open, the inner packaging means, rather than being destroyed, remains in the one part of the torn-open protective packaging means. The inner packaging means can preferably consist of a different material to the outer packaging means.



Inventors:
Korte, Christian Heinrich (Wuestenrot, DE)
Application Number:
12/997271
Publication Date:
12/08/2011
Filing Date:
06/10/2009
Assignee:
KORTE CHRISTIAN HEINRICH
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
53/467
International Classes:
B65D25/00; B65B5/04
View Patent Images:
Related US Applications:
20160331162Liquid-Tight Assembly of Base and Cover Members in an Advertisement Food TrayNovember, 2016Zhang
20160001971Self-Nesting Wavy SurfaceJanuary, 2016Kelinske
20030000951Method for reducing the severity of vapor cloud explosionsJanuary, 2003Clark
20070194024Easily connected and installed toolboxAugust, 2007Liaw
20140083879CUTTING AND DISPENSING CLOSURESMarch, 2014Ulstad
20120103997MULTI-FUNCTIONAL BABY TRAINING CUPMay, 2012Schingh-laniel
20140263322CORING-FREE VALVE SYSTEMSeptember, 2014Ghodbane et al.
20030106898Slow-closing door and refuse container embodying sameJune, 2003Kennedy et al.
20090071867Cosmetic compact with built-in sliding and interactive double baseMarch, 2009Au
20110056940Lid Particularly for a Pool Return SkimmerMarch, 2011Goffman
20110151069Infant or baby feeding systemsJune, 2011Harding



Primary Examiner:
HELVEY, PETER N.
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
BOYLE FREDRICKSON S.C. (MILWAUKEE, WI, US)
Claims:
1. 1-24. (canceled)

25. A packaging, in particular, a packaging for foodstuffs and semi-luxury goods, or similar, having an inner packaging accommodating the item to be packaged and a protective packaging surrounding the inner packaging the inner surface of which is firmly joined to the inner packaging at at least one location and may be manually opened.

26. A packaging according to claim 25, wherein the protective packaging has a perforation extending along a closed line.

27. A packaging according to claim 25, wherein the protective packaging and possibly the inner packaging, have longitudinally extended shapes and the perforation is arranged transversely in respect to the longitudinal direction.

28. A packaging according to claim 25, wherein the protective packaging has a grasping tab on either end.

29. A packaging according to claim 25, wherein a single inner packaging is arranged within a protective packaging.

30. A packaging according to claim 25, wherein the inner packaging and/or protective packaging are manufactured in the form of flexible, tubular sections from a strip of material.

31. A packaging according to claim 30, wherein the flexible tubular sections are pressed flat at separation zones running transversely to the tube and the two sides of the flexible tubing are joined to one another.

32. A packaging according to claim 31, wherein the flattened sections on either side of the separation zones form grasping tabs.

33. A packaging according to claim 30, wherein an edge of the strip of material is folded over outward and the opposite edge of the strip of material is joined to the outer layer of its folded-over edge in order to form the inner packaging.

34. A packaging according to claim 33, wherein a zone along the folded-over edge of the strip of material remains loose.

35. A packaging according to claim 30, wherein an edge of the strip of material is folded over outward and the opposite edge of the strip of material is joined to the outer layer of its folded-over edge in order to form the protective packaging.

36. A packaging according to claim 33, wherein the zone along the folded-over edge of the strip of material serves to join the protective packaging to the inner packaging.

37. A packaging according to claim 25, wherein the joint between the inner packaging and the protective packaging is provided in the vicinity of just one end of the packaging.

38. A packaging according to claim 25, wherein the inner packaging consists of a material differing from that of the protective packaging.

39. A packaging according to claim 25, wherein the inner packaging consists of a material permeable to water.

40. A method for packaging foodstuffs and/or semi-luxury goods, wherein an inner packaging having an open end is formed, a portion of the item to be packaged is filled into the inner packaging through its open end, the inner packaging is sealed, a protective packaging having an open end is formed, the inner packaging is positioned in the protective packaging through its open end, and the protective packaging is sealed.

41. A method according to claim 40, wherein the inner packaging and/or the protective packaging are configured as sections of flexible tubing formed from a continuously forming, flexible tube.

42. A method according to claim 41, wherein the flexible tube is formed by joining the longitudinal edges of a strip of material.

43. A method according to claim 41, wherein the inner packaging and/or the protective packaging are separated into individual sections by dissecting the respective flexible tubes.

44. A method according to claim 41, wherein the inner packaging is joined to the protective packaging in the vicinity of a separation zone.

45. A method according to claim 40, wherein the protective packaging is provided with a circumferential perforation.

46. A method according to claim 42, wherein an edge of the strip of material is folded over outward and the opposite edge of the strip of material is joined to the outer layer of its folded-over edge in order to form the inner packaging, where its folded-over edge preferably remains loose at the zone along its edge.

47. A method according to claim 40, wherein the inner packaging consists of a material differing from that of the protective packaging.

48. A method according to claim 40, wherein both ends of the protective packaging are provided with a grasping tab.

Description:

The invention concerns a packaging, in particular, a packaging for foodstuffs and semi-luxury goods, as well as packaged semi-luxury goods. The invention also concerns a method for packaging semi-luxury goods or foodstuffs.

Foodstuffs and semi-luxury goods are frequently offered to users in small, individually packaged portions, where the foodstuffs involved could be, for example, chocolate bars, that are intended for immediate consumption or, for example, teabags, that still need to be treated. Individually packaged portions of coffee that are still to be brewed are also familiar. It will be evident from the examples of teabags and prepackaged portions of coffee that their packaging must remain sealed as this encloses the contents during usage.

The invention is based on the problem of devising a packaging, in particular, a packaging for foodstuffs and semi-luxury goods, which can be handled in a simple and suitable manner.

In order to solve that problem, the invention proposes a packaging having the features stated in claim 1. The invention also proposes a method for packaging foodstuffs and/or semi-luxury goods. Elaborations on the invention are covered by the sub-claims.

The invention therefore proposes a packaging which accommodates an inner packaging that contains the item, for example, a foodstuff, that is to be packaged. This inner packaging is firmly joined to the protective packaging at a single location. Therefore, when the user, perhaps manually, opens the protective packaging, the inner packaging containing the packaged item will remain within the protective packaging and not fall out, which both simplifies the handling and allows the user to move and handle the inner packaging containing the packaged item by means of the protective packaging, without handling the inner packaging—which can be highly beneficial, particularly where foodstuffs are involved.

To facilitate the opening of the protective packaging, according to an elaboration on the invention, it may be provided that the protective packaging has perforations extending along a closed line, or another weakened zone, that may be readily broken manually. Depending upon the type of material employed, this weakened zone might also be configured such that the protective packaging is merely weakened and has no perforated holes there.

It has been proven particularly practical if the protective packaging and, if necessary, also the inner packaging, has a longitudinally extended shape, while the perforation, or other sort of weakened zone, is arranged transversely in respect to the longitudinal direction. In particular, it may be provided that the protective packaging has a grasping tab on either end. The user can then tear open the protective packaging by pulling on the grasping tabs. Once the protective package has been torn open by simply pulling on it, he/she will be able to immediately recognize whether the inner packaging is arranged within one or the other part of the protective packaging.

Depending on the circumstances of the particular case, the protective packaging might have several inner packaging sections. In the case of its primary intended purpose, namely, being able to offer single portions in a protective packaging, in accordance with an elaboration on the invention, it may be provided that just a single inner packaging containing a single portion of the item to be packaged is arranged in a protective packaging, where it may be provided that the inner packaging and protective packaging have almost the same dimensions.

Under an elaboration on the invention, it may be provided that the inner packaging and/or the protective packaging are manufactured in the form of tubular sections formed from a strip of material.

In order to manufacture individual inner packaging sections and/or protective packaging sections from a strip of material that has been joined such that if forms a flexible tube, according to an elaboration on the invention, it may be provided that the flexible tube is pressed flat at separation zones running transversely to the flexible tube and the two sides of the flexible tube are joined to one another by, for example, cementing or welding them together.

In particular, it may be provided that the flattened sections on either side of the separation zones also form the grasping tabs.

In order to manufacture the inner packaging from a strip of material, according to the invention, it may be provided that an edge of the strip of material is folded over outward and that the opposing edge is joined or cemented to the outer layer of the folded-over zone.

If so, it may be provided that a zone extending along the edge of the folded-over edge remains loose. This loose portion of the edge of the strip of material may be utilized to generate a joint with the inner surface of the protective packaging.

Under an elaboration on the invention, it may be provided that, in order to form the protective packaging, an edge of the strip of material is folded over outward and the opposing edge of the strip of material is joined to the outer layer of the folded-over edge.

As already mentioned, a user should be able to simply tear open the protective packaging and the inner packaging containing the foodstuff should then remain in one of the two parts of the separated protective packaging. To achieve this, according to an elaboration on the invention, it may be provided that the joint between the inner packaging and the protective packaging is provided in the vicinity of one end of the packaging only. No joints between the protective packaging and the inner packaging will be provided on other parts of the packaging.

Under an elaboration on the invention, it may be provided that the strip of material utilized for manufacturing the inner packaging consists of a differing, or differently treated, material than the strip of material utilized for manufacturing the protective packaging. For example, in the aforementioned case of teabags, the inner packaging might consist of a material permeable to water and having no effect on taste, while the protective packaging consists of a hermetically sealing material.

The invention also proposes a method for packaging foodstuffs and/or semi-luxury goods, as defined in the independent claims regarding said method.

According to the invention, providing items to be packaged in their inner packaging and inserting their inner packaging into their protective packaging may take place consecutively on the same apparatus.

Further features, details and benefits of the invention will be evident from the claims and the summary, the wording of both is herewith an integral part of the content of the following description of preferred embodiments of the invention by way of reference thereto, and from the drawings, which depict:

FIG. 1 a schematization of the packaging procedures according to the invention;

FIG. 2 the manner in which a flexible tube is formed from a strip of material;

FIG. 3 the manner in which the strip of material is folded over in order to generate a section of flexible tubing;

FIG. 4 a sectioned view of the inner packaging;

FIG. 5 a sectioned view of the protective packaging and the inner packaging contained therein;

FIG. 6 a view of the completed packaging;

FIG. 7 a view of the protective packaging in an opened state.

Proceeding from top to bottom in FIG. 1, the inner packaging is first manufactured and filled; the inner packaging is then inserted in the protective packaging. Both procedures, that is, the manufacture and filling of the inner packaging on the one hand, and the manufacture and filling of the protective packaging on the other, take place on the same apparatus and consecutively.

Arranged at the top of FIG. 1 is a filling tube 1 that has a filling funnel 2 on its upper end. A strip 3 of material is horizontally fed in from one side and redirected downward by a diverting mechanism 4. The strip 3 of material is formed into a flexible tube by a forming shoulder that is not shown. A flat jaw 5 that may be pressed against the strip 3 of material (cf. the arrow 6 in FIG. 1) and is capable of joining the two edges of the strip of material is arranged on the side of the filling tube 1 that faces away from the strip 3 of material that is being fed in, which will form the strip into a flexible tube. The strip is drawn downward by mechanisms that are not shown. A single portion of the item to be packaged is filled into the filling funnel 2 and then glides downward through the filling tube 1, and collects near the bottom end of the flexible tube. The flexible tube is then treated in a separating mechanism 8 such that the flexible tube is pressed together and the adjoining layers of the flexible tube are joined to one another. A knife 9 on the separating mechanism then cuts off the inner packaging. The separating mechanism 8 has a pair of jaws 10 that may be moved toward one another until they contact one another.

By this means, in the upper half of the figure, individual inner packaging sections are filled and separated from the flexible tube formed from the strip 3 of material. These individual, inner packaging sections 11 then fall into a second filling tube 12 in order that a flexible tube 14 will be formed from a strip 13 of material in a manner similar to that depicted in the upper half of the figure. The edges of the strip 13 of material are joined together using a welding chuck 15. The jaws of that welding chuck 15 may also be moved toward one another (cf. the arrow 16) and are thus capable of joining the two edges of the strip 13 of material to one another.

Here again, the flexible tube 14 is drawn downward and guided through a separating mechanism 18. This separating mechanism 18 is constructed in the same manner as the separating mechanism 8 shown in the upper half of the figure, i.e., it also incorporates a knife 19 and a pair of jaws 20. The result is an inner packaging 11 that is accommodated in a protective packaging 21 exiting the far end of the mechanism. While the inner packaging 11 is being manufactured from the strip 3 of material, the protective packaging 21 is being formed from the strip 13 of material.

Before the strip 13 of material is formed into the flexible tube 14 by being run over a forming shoulder, it runs through a station 22 that also has a pair of jaws 23 that may be moved toward one another. However, here the material is notched or perforated, rather than separated. Whether it is notched or perforated will depend upon the circumstances of the individual case involved. This notched, or weakened, zone is generated at regular intervals, where due attention is devoted to making sure that all notches are located approximately on the longitudinal centerlines of the protective packaging sections involved.

FIG. 2 shows how a flexible tube may be formed from a flat strip 3 of material. A forming shoulder 25, the inner surface of which and the outer surface of the tube 1 are separated by a narrow slit, is formed around the tube 1 shown in FIG. 1. The strip 3 of material that is horizontally fed in is guided between a pair of rollers 26 that drive it at that location, and is then guided around an idler roller 27 and transported upward at an oblique angle, where the strip 3 of material is guided through the slit between the forming shoulder 25 and the tube 1, and thereby wrapped around the outer surface of the tube 1. The downward drawing of the strip of material may be executed by means of rollers, drums, or similar, which are not shown here. The flat jaw 5 then joins the overlapped edges of the strip 3 of material, as has been mentioned above in conjunction with FIG. 1.

Of course, that which has been depicted in FIG. 2 for the strip 3 of material also applies to the strip 13 of material utilized for manufacturing the protective packaging.

FIG. 3 depicts a sectioned view illustrating how the strip 3 of material is arranged in the schematized apparatus shown in FIG. 2 in order to form the inner packaging. An edge of the strip 3 of material is folded over in order that the strip 3 of material will have a double layer section extending along the fold line. A folded edge 28 will therefore be formed in the interior of the section of flexible tubing formed thereby. The opposite edge 29 of the strip 3 of material is then positioned over the outer layer of the double layer section and joined to its outer layer along its entire length. A zone 32 extending between that edge 30 of the strip 3 of material and the former opposite edge 31 of the strip 3 of material is left loose.

This loose zone 32 on the strip 3 of material may be utilized for joining it to the strip 13 of material used for manufacturing the protective packaging.

FIG. 4 depicts a sectioned view of an inner packaging 11. Here, once again, we can see the type of joint binding together the two edges 30, 31 of the strip 3 of material, i.e., the joint explained above in conjunction with FIG. 3. A layer 33 of adhesive that joins said edges is applied between the outer layer of the folded-over edge of the strip 3 of material and the inner surface of the opposite edge. Adhesive is then also applied to the loose zone 32 on the strip 3 of material (cf. the arrows A). The entire assembly is then joined to the protective packaging, where a layer of adhesive 34 is used to join the inner surface of the protective packaging to the loose zone 32 on the inner packaging. Here again, an edge of the strip 13 of material utilized for manufacturing the protective packaging is folded over outward and said outwardly folded-over portion is joined to the inner surface of the opposing edge by means of a layer 35 of adhesive. Said joining of the inner packaging to the protective packaging occurs at one end of the protective packaging only.

The result of manufacturing a single packaging is shown in FIG. 6. The protective packaging, which, to users, would initially appear to be merely a uniform object, is longitudinally extended and has a grasping tab 36 on both of its ends. Said grasping tabs 36 are formed on either side of the separation zone by the separating mechanism 18 shown in FIG. 1. The protective packaging has a sort of perforation 37 that has been generated by the apparatus 22 shown in FIG. 1 situated approximately midway between its ends. Apart from that, said perforation 37 need not be visible to users. Whether an actual perforation or notching is involved will depend on the circumstances of the individual case involved or the foodstuff that is to be packaged.

If the user now grasps the pair of grasping tabs 36 and tears open the packaging by pulling on it along the direction of the arrows, the situation shown in FIG. 7, where the inner packaging becomes visible, will occur. Since the inner packaging 11 is joined to the protective packaging 21 in the vicinity of one of its ends (cf. FIG. 5), the inner packaging 11 will remain contained within the right-hand part of the protective packaging 21 shown in FIG. 7. It therefore will not fall out. The inner packaging may continue to be handled by grasping the grasping tab 36 on that part of the protective packaging that is joined to the inner packaging 11. If semi-luxury goods, for example, tea, are involved, the user may insert the inner packaging into a cup without having to handle the inner packaging 11. He/she may also utilize the grasping tabs 36 for removing the teabag from the cup once the desired brewing period has elapsed.

As an example, it will now be assumed that the packaging involves tea, i.e. a sort of teabag. The strip of material utilized for manufacturing the inner packaging will then be a double layer strip, where what will later become the inner surface of the inner packaging consists of a thermoplastic and what will later become its outer surface consists of cellulose fibers.

Employing the joint between the inner packaging and the protective packaging makes it possible to dispense with mechanical fasteners.

Of course, the thermoplastic portions of the associated strips 3 and 13 of material could be welded to one another, instead of cemented together by the layer of adhesive referred to in conjunction with FIGS. 4 and 5, which would eliminate the need for employing an additional adhesive.

In the case of teabags, a mechanical knife might be utilized for producing the string of perforations 37 (cf. FIG. 6). In the case of coffee products that must be treated in different ways, the strip of material utilized for manufacturing their protective packaging may be weakened by a laser system so as to form a weakened line, without affecting the barrier layer.