Smurfit Kappa has announced that it has opened a new International Safe Transfer Association (ISTA) certified lab at its new e-commerce packaging facility in Northampton, UK.
ISTA certification is often required by online selling platforms such as Amazon, Alibaba, or eBay, the company added.
The new lab will expand Smurfit Kappa’s network of packaging testing labs and centres that support retailers and producers to develop, test and launch disruptive packaging solutions for e-commerce at minimal risk and with reliable implementation.
Increased e-commerce spend helped boost the company's first-quarter performance, as underlying revenue increased 6% year-on-year to €2.27 billion.
'An Ideal Environment'
Speaking at the launch, Eddie Fellows, CEO of Smurfit Kappa UK and Ireland, said, "Our customers need innovative and sustainable packaging solutions to meet growing demand from online sales. The lab is an ideal environment for us to work with customers to develop new packaging in real-time.
"Whether our customers are moving to online retail to increase their customer base, or introducing new packaging solutions, by securing the necessary certifications in our lab, they have a clear path to develop solutions quickly that are resilient to supply chain damage."
Smurfit Kappa Northampton comprises an experience centre for customers to immerse themselves in the latest insights and experience first-hand innovations in packaging.
It features state-of-the-art technologies and tools, that aid in developing deeper insights across the entire value chain, from warehouse simulations to a virtual store.
Smurfit Kappa’s ISTA-certified lab in the Netherlands has gathered over 14 years of experience and data from testing new and innovative packaging solutions appropriate for the eCommerce supply chain.
The company recently secured Amazon’s ‘Frustration-Free Packaging’ pre-certification for a three-litre Bag-in-Box solution.
New Packaging Solutions
A team of experts works with customers to develop new packaging solutions to minimise and prevent product damage from occurring during distribution.
The prototype designs are then rigorously tested to ensure that the required performance standards concerning compression, drop and vibration are met to secure certification.
Following certification, the packaging solutions are then put into production for customers.
Arco Berkenbosch, vice-president of innovation and development, said, "Our network of innovation centres ensures sustainable, adaptable and scalable solutions and underscores our focus in eCommerce.
"We are committed to continuing our investment in laboratories that directly benefit our customers, providing a real advantage over their competitors and offering customers even greater value."