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Packaging a Key Sector in Pandemic

The movement of goods around the country is something that many people don’t ever really think about until faced with a change in circumstances, however, effective supply chains are vital parts of economies across the globe.

To facilitate the easy passage of goods to support consumers, manufacturing industries and vital sectors such food, drink, medical, chemical and engineering corrugated boxes and packaging helps to ensure these products navigate their way through the supply chain and that they arrive intact, and on time.

The Covid-19 or coronavirus pandemic has had a considerable impact on the packaging industry around the world. Self-isolation rules have resulted in short supply, temporary factory closures, and event cancellations. Supply chains begin to look to move sourcing away from some countries following manufacturing and production disruptions.

Perhaps key to appreciating the role of packaging in the supply chain is that it is so much more than a cardboard box. It’s about product protection, product identification and a solution that ensures the movement of goods through the supply chain. It plays a significant part in the logistics element and supports many FMCG and JIT production lines.

For instance, 76 independent Australian grocers across the East Coast have been warned of packaging supply issues due to temporary factory closures in China.

Malaysia is also suffering in their month-long lockdown, where the largest manufacturer of medical rubber gloves, Top Glove Corp Bhd, has been left with only 2 weeks’ worth of packaging boxes to ship their gloves in due to a supplier shutdown.

“We can’t get our gloves to hospitals without cartons,” Executive Chairman Lim Wee Chai said in an interview. “Hospitals need our gloves. We can’t just supply 50% of their requirement.”

Britain’s Department of Health & Social Care has urged Malaysian authorities to prioritise the production and shipment of gloves that are of “utmost critical for fighting COVID-19.” However, the production of the gloves does not seem to be the issue here, but their ability to obtain the packaging materials they need to ship them, is.

Corrugated packaging is a vital key sector in the fight against the coronavirus and why Board24 and Cases24 will continue to operate at full capacity across the UK and Ireland.

Richard McBride, Managing Director for Board24 tells us “We are continuously working closely with all of our key suppliers and monitoring all situations. We have identified no significant risks of interruption at this time, with all key partners operating to normal capability, so at this stage we are not concerned.

“Fortunately, our independent status allows us to source from a wide range of both Domestic & European raw material suppliers. Our paper stocks remain healthy, and there is no need for our Customers to alter their normal order patterns. Demand is currently steady with the highest increase seen in the food sector, as our Customers strive to support the Retailers in replenishing supply lines, against a backdrop of unprecedented consumer demand.

“Our employees and their support are a huge part of our success in ensuring that we, as a key supplier in the Food and Health sectors, continue to operate. I would like to take this chance to thank them all for their commitment and hard work in ensuring that we keep the supply chain going in these unprecedented times.”

Supporting businesses in securing supply chains across the globe with our packaging solutions is what we do best but, at this time we remain open for business and committed to those that need us most, all whilst protecting our staff and their health and well-being.

We can help to protect products in your supply chains now and in the future; it’s what we aim to do as a partner to our customers.

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