Surprise Package

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Surprise Package

By Tim Clark, Managing Editor - 08/01/2004

In order to streamline its corporate packaging system across all operations, Ocean Spray Cranberries Inc., manufacturer of the leading brand of canned and bottled juice drinks in the United States, will use the 3M Integrated Packaging Tool. Project kick-off was early June. The system will be used to manage packaging specifications by corporate package engineering and manufacturing for all Ocean Spray products, a process that will ultimately eliminate outdated packaging and product information.

With 2003 sales of $1 billion, Ocean Spray leads the industry in providing new and unique juices and juice drinks and innovative packaging for its products to the consumer and food service markets. 3M's Integrated Packaging Tool is a Web-based, data-enabled system that centralizes all packaging information. The Integrated Packaging Tool was built with Microsoft .NET and uses Microsoft SQL Server as its back-end database. It also allows users to take advantage of their existing IT infrastructure through the use of an XML-based Application Programming Interface (API).

Speed to Market
The Integrated Packaging Tool will enable Ocean Spray to be faster and more flexible in introducing new products and standardizing the entire packaging process.

"Time to market and brand management are primary considerations in the development and distribution of our products," says Ken Zaval, packaging manager at Ocean Spray. "3M has proven that it is able to help us increase efficiencies and collaboration in our packaging system along with reducing costs, helping us better serve our customers."

According to Zaval, Ocean Spray's selection of the 3M Integrated Packaging Tool is part of the company's ongoing commitment to best manufacturing practices, which will bring the company to a new level of packaging systems management.

"Packaging is one of the last frontiers in IT and supply chain business processes where there are clear opportunities for improvement," says John Pohl, division vice president, 3M Industrial Services and Solutions. "This is particularly relevant to the food and beverage industry, where getting products to market late can cost millions of dollars in lost revenue."

Data Gets In Synch
Based on a history of packaging expertise, 3M developed the 3M Integrated Packaging Tool to integrate and manage its packaging information. The system helps companies in packaging-intensive industries address business critical issues such as compliance, product surety, time to market and reduction of packaging costs.

For food and beverage companies like Ocean Spray, where time to market is critical, the right packaging tool can accelerate and streamline the process of packaging development for new product launches or promotions by centralizing packaging specifications, labeling data and artwork. In addition, the data-enabled solution supports customer and industry initiatives like UCCnet and RFID.