"Goldene Welle" (Golden Flute) Innovation Prize: Two more awards for Panther Packaging
The "Goldene Welle" Innovation Prize, awarded every three years by the Verband der Wellpappen-Industrie e.V. (VDW – Corrugated Board Industry Association), this year honours the development skills of the Panther Group in double measure: a new beaker-crate development came second, while the company also received a special prize for "TransPanther", the packaging system with built-in RFID tags.

On the basis of around 80 exhibits, manufacturers delivered proof of the versatility and wide range of applications of their corrugated-board product. In recent competitions substitute packaging materials and their implementation in corrugated board were frequently the focus of attention, but this year producers demonstrated that the working material corrugated board boasts its very own possibilities for the development of packaging solutions. The promoter of the event stressed that the overall standard of the exhibits has risen compared to that at last yearís event.
The new beaker crate honoured by the jury is striking in terms of the minimised use of material: the new concept dispenses with a continuous base but not with a firm footing for the beakers which are to be transported and presented in the crate. "All relevant requirements have been met with this crate: material-saving manufacture in a blank, simple handling, versatile applicability, transportation security through the integrated stacking lugs, and ready to sell from without further action" according to the juryís verdict.
The airy and light corrugated-board crate is based on an intelligent design which is a blend of material economy and a high level of product safety and stackability. Material savings can be as much as 20 %. Made from B or E flute, the tray safely withstands the loads imposed by customary trade contents. Dispensing with a continuous base leads to material savings, while the crate still retains its load stability under standard retail loads. Finished in flexoprint, the new beaker crate adds an attractive charm to all types of content.

TransPanther is the name of the packaging system which incorporates RFID tags directly into corrugated board. Corrugated-board sheets are produced which contain one or more transponders (depending upon the number of uses of the packaging), and then the panels are printed, die-cut, folded and glued at Panther Packaging – finally forming ready-made packaging with a built-in information carrier. The transponder is always located under a closed surface and is therefore not visible. As a result it is protected from manipulation or theft; packaging design also remains unaffected.
The tags can be placed anywhere within the packaging. And the transponder cannot be removed without destroying the packaging. At the same time, the tags are protected against external influences such as dirt. No element can go missing thanks to the firm bond between the packaging and the transponder. The result is that the packaging can be identified with the packed goods at all times and mix-ups arising from wrong labelling are excluded. All of these details help in achieving the prime objective of the retail trade and consumer-goods producers: optimisation of stocks, more efficient conduct of business and a reduction in error rates. Clear gains in terms of time can be achieved throughout the whole process chain and automation levels are raised while business processes become more transparent. "In this solution, the jury sees an important and pioneering contribution to logistics by corrugated board. The automatic integration of the transponders into the corrugated board reduces handling work and therefore costs and represents the first step towards packaging which communicates" was the assessment of the jury.