Sunday, July 20, 2008

Packaging Advances - Putting Tofu and Pudding Into Balloons

If there's one thing that we excel at in America, it's packaging. Consider the following examples:
  • When I was a kid, Nabisco Graham Crackers were always stale in the wax paper packaging. Now, they come in heat-sealed plastic packaging that is airtight but virtually impossible to open. You can never break into a package without destroying at least one entire cracker. The packaging is destroyed in the process of opening - there's no re-sealing them, so they still go stale if you don't eat them the first day.
  • Same thing for Ritz Crackers. No getting into one of those plastic sleeves without a knife or scissors.
  • Have you purchased motor oil recently? The packaging is very efficient. Until you try to dispense the oil into your car. It's next to impossible to aim the oil coming out of the spout! It takes a few days to burn off all the oil I spill on my engine.
But the Japanese are going to fix all this. They're experts at packaging, too. Just check out the picture below. They're packaging tofu into what looks like balloons.


According to PingMag, the Tokyo-based magazine about Design and Making Things, when you want your tofu, which I can tell you is nearly never at my place, all you have to do is use a toothpick to pop the balloon, leaving you with a ball of tofu and a very little waste. I'm thinking of using these to replace the egg toss at my next family reunion.

A company called Bocca is apparently using the same type of packaging with pudding, according to this other article in Japanese. Putting these into your kids' school lunches could prove to be disastrous!

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