GB1601335A - Methods and apparatus for packaging and preparing beverages - Google Patents

Methods and apparatus for packaging and preparing beverages Download PDF

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Publication number
GB1601335A
GB1601335A GB984577A GB984577A GB1601335A GB 1601335 A GB1601335 A GB 1601335A GB 984577 A GB984577 A GB 984577A GB 984577 A GB984577 A GB 984577A GB 1601335 A GB1601335 A GB 1601335A
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GB
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Patent type
Prior art keywords
infuser
membrane
overhang
closed loop
strip
Prior art date
Legal status (The legal status is an assumption and is not a legal conclusion. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation as to the accuracy of the status listed.)
Expired
Application number
GB984577A
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Ruskin B E S
Priority date (The priority date is an assumption and is not a legal conclusion. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation as to the accuracy of the date listed.)
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Publication date

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Classifications

    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B65CONVEYING; PACKING; STORING; HANDLING THIN OR FILAMENTARY MATERIAL
    • B65DCONTAINERS FOR STORAGE OR TRANSPORT OF ARTICLES OR MATERIALS, e.g. BAGS, BARRELS, BOTTLES, BOXES, CANS, CARTONS, CRATES, DRUMS, JARS, TANKS, HOPPERS, FORWARDING CONTAINERS; ACCESSORIES, CLOSURES, OR FITTINGS THEREFOR; PACKAGING ELEMENTS; PACKAGES
    • B65D85/00Containers, packaging elements or packages, specially adapted for particular articles or materials
    • B65D85/70Containers, packaging elements or packages, specially adapted for particular articles or materials for materials not otherwise provided for
    • B65D85/804Disposable containers or packages with contents which are mixed, infused or dissolved in situ, i.e. without having been previously removed from the package
    • B65D85/808Disposable containers or packages with contents which are mixed, infused or dissolved in situ, i.e. without having been previously removed from the package for immersion in the liquid to release part or all of their contents, e.g. tea bags
    • B65D85/812Disposable containers or packages with contents which are mixed, infused or dissolved in situ, i.e. without having been previously removed from the package for immersion in the liquid to release part or all of their contents, e.g. tea bags with features facilitating their manipulation or suspension

Description

(54) METHODS AND APPARATUS FOR PACKAGING AND PREPARING BEVERAGES (71) I, BRYAN ERNEST SYDNEY RUSKIN, of The Wilkins, Lower Welson, Eandisly, Hereford, formerly of Magnolia Lodge, Watford Road, St. Albans, Herts., a British Subject, do hereby declare the invention, for which I pray that a patent may be granted to me, and the method by which it is to be performed, to be particularly described in and by the following statement:- This invention relates to beverages and in particular to methods and apparatus for packaging and preparing same.

It is well known to use tea-bags which, although relatively expensive compared with loose-tea, provide advantages in convenience. In particular, they enable individual cups of tea free from tea leaves to be prepared and the used bags are readily disposable.

In preparing a cup of tea using a tea bag, there is some delay for the tea to infuse into the boiling or hot water, and this delay is often reduced in practice by stirring and prodding at the tea bag immersed in the water with a tea spoon or stirrer, which, of course, is also required if milk and/or sugar are to be added.

According to the present invention, there is provided a disposable beverage infuser comprising an elongated strip of flexible material, such as plastics, one end of which is bent back on itself and fixed so as to define a closed loop and a perforated membrane extending across each face of the closed loop and sealed to provide an enclosure in which an easily soluble, e.g. a granular or powder, beverage product is retained.

By "disposable" is meant an infuser which is intended to be "thrown away" immediately after use.

A problem that could arise with such a form of stirrer is that the plastics strip should be of minimum dimensions consistent with its ability to perform satisfactorily, and the edges of said strip may well be only of .015" to .020". This could lead to difficulties in sealing a perforated membrane along said edges.

According to a subsidiary feature of this invention the elongated stirrer is formed as an extrusion, having in cross-section edges relatively thicker than its centre portion.

Where the stirrer is to be used for fresh ground coffee it is necessary to seal in the freshness of the coffee. This can only be achieved by the provision of a sealing membrane overlying each perforated membrane.

A problem which then arises is to effectively seal both membranes in position to each face of the closed loop, particularly since the edges of the closed loop are relatively thin.

Also, the sealing arrangement must be such as to ensure that when the sealing membrane is stripped off, its underlying perforated membrane is left undamaged.

According to a further subsidiary feature of this invention, for a disposable beverage infuser intended for fresh ground coffee, each perforated membrane is dimensioned to provide an overhang around the edge of the closed loop to which it is sealed, said overhang being connected to its membrane via a line of weakness, and a sealing membrane overlies the perforated membrane and is dimensioned such that it can be sealed to the upper surface of the overhang.

It will thus be appreciated that the sealing membrane can be stripped off by parting the overhang of the perforated membrane from its effective wall area.

In order that the invention may be readily understood, embodiments thereof will now be described, by way of example, with reference to the accompanying drawings in which: Figure 1 is a diagramatic view of one embodiment of infuser, Figure 2a to c are enlarged alternative cross-section on the line Il-Il of Figure 1, Figure 3 is a side view of another embodi ment of infuser, Figure 4 is an enlarged section on the line IV-IV of Figure 3 and Figure 5 is a view similar to Figure 4.

Referring to Figure 1, in one embodiment, the disposable infuser comprises a stirrer in the form of an elongated strip 1 of resilient material, e.g a suitable non-toxic plastics material which is substantially free from deformation when immersed in boiling/hot water. At one end, the strip 1 is bent back on itself and fixed so as to define a closed loop 2.

A sheet or membrane of perforated paper 3, 4 (e.g. as normally used for tea bags), or other suitable permeable or absorbent material, is extended across each face of the loop and is suitably sealed (e.g. by heat sealing) to its respective edge defining the closed loop 2.

Prior to sealing the second membrane 4, a required quantity of easily soluble beverage product 5, such as tea, coffee, etc., is measured into the cavity 6 provided by the loop and the one fixed membrane 3. In Figure 1 the membrane 4 is partly broken away for clarity. It will be appreciated that in this embodiment the closed loop and two membranes between them define an "enclosure" for the beverage product.

Such an arrangement combines the functions of a stirrer and, e.g., a tea bag, and can be readily disposed of, i.e. thrown away, after use. The arrangement is particularly useful in that, during stirring, infusion is accelerated. The arrangement is also in a particularly convenient form for packaging as individual items, as well as for packaging and handling in quantities.

In this embodiment, the other end of the strip 1 is bent over to form an open loop 6 to enable the infuser/stirrer to be hooked onto the rim of a cup for stowage. Alternatively, a number of infuser/stirrers could be hooked onto the rim of the filling opening of a teapot and retained by the lid. In this way, the closed loops containing the tea would be suspended in the water of the tea-pot for infusion and, after use, the infuser/stirrers could be readily removed from the tea-pot and disposed of.

It will be appreciated that the infuser can be filled with any suitable easily soluble beverage product; for example, it could be a blend of tea, dried milk and sugar whereby a cup of sweetened tea with milk could be prepared instantly in a particularly convenient manner.

In the embodiment of Figure 1 described above, the cross-section of the strip 1 is rectangular (as shown in Figure 2a). In order for this strip to be sufficiently rigid to perform its function as a stirrer, tests have indicated that its thickness may need to be of the order of .015" or .020", in which case the edges of the closed loop 2 to which the membranes 3 and 4 are sealed present only a small surface area to effect said sealing. In a modification of the embodiment of Figures 1 and 2a the strips are formed from approximately the same amount of plastics material, but in cross-section, the material is distributed more to said strip edges as shown in Figure 2b. In this way sufficient rigidity of the material can be maintained and also the edges will provide a larger surface area for more effective sealing of the membranes.

Preferably, the strip is formed as a plastics extrusion and, as shown in Figure 2c, two (or more) strip widths can be formed from a single extrusion, the strips being separated in a subsequent operation.

Referring now to Figures 3 to 5, in another embodiment of infuser, particularly intended for coffee, the strip 1 is bent and fixed to provide a circular closed loop 2. As with the first embodiment, the sheets or membranes of perforated paper 3, 4 are extended across respective faces of the closed loop 2 and are suitably sealed to respective edges of said loop 2. Prior to sealing, the second membrane 4 (see Figure 4), a required quantity of coffee 5 is measured into the enclosure 6 defined by the closed loop 2 and the membranes 3 and 4. The other end of the strip is bent over obliquely to form an open hook 7 to enable the infuser/stirrer to be hooked onto the rim of a cup for stowage.In order for the strip 1 to be sufficiently rigid to perform its function as a stirrer and to present sufficient surface area for sealing the membranes 3 and 4 to the edges of the closed loop 2, as discussed hereinbefore with reference to Figure 2b, the strips are formed as extrusions, which in cross-section present edges of the order of .015" or 0.20" thickness.

Because this embodiment is particularly for coffee it is necessary to seal in the coffee essence. This is achieved by sealing membranes 10. Each membrane 3 and 4 is dimensioned to provide an overhang 8 beyond its respective edge of the loop 2, the overhang being connected to the effective wall area of the membrane via a line of weakness 9. Thus, each membrane 3, 4 is sealed directly to its respective edge of the loop 2, preferably by mechanical entanglement over the area marked 12 (see Figure 4).

The sealing membranes 10 which are of similar outer dimensions to their respective membranes 3 or 4 are sealed only to their respective overhangs 8 only, preferably by means of a heat seal. In this respect, the outer face of the overhang 8 may be suitably impregnated or covered with an adhesive, or heat seal agent, and each sealing membrane 10 may comprise a thin metal foil, if necessary, or alternatively, provided with adhesive over the area marked 13 (see Figure 4), to provide an effective sealing connection to said overhang.

As shown in Figure 5, with this arrange ment, it is only necessary to strip-off each sealing membrane 10 to part the overhang 8 from its main wall area to prepare the infuser for use.

WHAT I CLAIM IS: 1. A disposable beverage infuser comprising an elongated strip of flexible material, such as plastics, one end of which is bent back on itself and fixed so as to define a closed loop and a perforated membrane extending across each face of the closed loop and sealed to provide an enclosure in which an easily soluble beverage produce is retained.

2. An infuser according to Claim 1, wherein the strip is formed as an extrusion of plastics material having in cross-section edges relatively thicker than its centre portion.

3. A fresh ground coffee infuser according to Claim 1 or 2, wherein each perforated membrane is dimensioned to provide an overhang around the edge of the closed loop to which it is sealed, said overhang being connected to its membrane via a line of weakness, and wherein a sealing membrane overlies the perforated membrane and is dimensioned such that it can be sealed to the upper surface of the overhang.

4. A disposable beverage infuser constructed and adapted for use substantially as hereinbefore described with reference to Figures 1 and 2, or, Figures 3 to 5 of the accompanying drawings.

**WARNING** end of DESC field may overlap start of CLMS **.

Claims (4)

**WARNING** start of CLMS field may overlap end of DESC **. ment, it is only necessary to strip-off each sealing membrane 10 to part the overhang 8 from its main wall area to prepare the infuser for use. WHAT I CLAIM IS:
1. A disposable beverage infuser comprising an elongated strip of flexible material, such as plastics, one end of which is bent back on itself and fixed so as to define a closed loop and a perforated membrane extending across each face of the closed loop and sealed to provide an enclosure in which an easily soluble beverage produce is retained.
2. An infuser according to Claim 1, wherein the strip is formed as an extrusion of plastics material having in cross-section edges relatively thicker than its centre portion.
3. A fresh ground coffee infuser according to Claim 1 or 2, wherein each perforated membrane is dimensioned to provide an overhang around the edge of the closed loop to which it is sealed, said overhang being connected to its membrane via a line of weakness, and wherein a sealing membrane overlies the perforated membrane and is dimensioned such that it can be sealed to the upper surface of the overhang.
4. A disposable beverage infuser constructed and adapted for use substantially as hereinbefore described with reference to Figures 1 and 2, or, Figures 3 to 5 of the accompanying drawings.
GB984577A 1978-05-26 1978-05-26 Methods and apparatus for packaging and preparing beverages Expired GB1601335A (en)

Priority Applications (1)

Application Number Priority Date Filing Date Title
GB984577A GB1601335A (en) 1978-05-26 1978-05-26 Methods and apparatus for packaging and preparing beverages

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Application Number Priority Date Filing Date Title
GB984577A GB1601335A (en) 1978-05-26 1978-05-26 Methods and apparatus for packaging and preparing beverages

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GB1601335A true true GB1601335A (en) 1981-10-28

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Cited By (13)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US4465697A (en) * 1983-06-14 1984-08-14 Brice Ilotan Research Corporation Coffee brewing apparatus and method
EP0129409A2 (en) * 1983-06-18 1984-12-27 JOHN WYETH & BROTHER LIMITED Thiazolo - and thiazinobenzimidazoles
EP0158511A2 (en) * 1984-04-06 1985-10-16 General Foods Limited Beverage infuser device
EP0173492A1 (en) * 1984-08-07 1986-03-05 Stir-n-Brew, Ltd. Coffee brewing apparatus
WO1988003367A1 (en) * 1986-11-07 1988-05-19 Thompson Owen E Method and apparatus for making an infusion
US4826695A (en) * 1986-03-26 1989-05-02 Joseph Tanner Beverage infusion device and method of use
US4871555A (en) * 1981-09-27 1989-10-03 Erez Schwartz Infusion, stirring and hanging device for preparing beverage
US4891232A (en) * 1988-10-11 1990-01-02 Dahl Derek W Beverage infusion device
GB2311206A (en) * 1996-03-23 1997-09-24 John Edward Morgan Fisher Disposable packaging for food and beverages
US5906845A (en) * 1994-12-09 1999-05-25 Robertson; James P. Flavoring devices
GB2384689A (en) * 2001-02-02 2003-08-06 Tea Solutions Ltd Infusion device for beverage making
WO2005013775A1 (en) * 2003-08-01 2005-02-17 Tea Solutions Limited Device for making a beverage
GB2417234A (en) * 2004-08-16 2006-02-22 G Mat Ltd Tea bag with attached handle

Cited By (19)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US4871555A (en) * 1981-09-27 1989-10-03 Erez Schwartz Infusion, stirring and hanging device for preparing beverage
US4465697A (en) * 1983-06-14 1984-08-14 Brice Ilotan Research Corporation Coffee brewing apparatus and method
US4699794A (en) * 1983-06-14 1987-10-13 Brice Michael F Coffee brewing method and apparatus
EP0129409A2 (en) * 1983-06-18 1984-12-27 JOHN WYETH & BROTHER LIMITED Thiazolo - and thiazinobenzimidazoles
EP0129409B1 (en) * 1983-06-18 1993-10-27 JOHN WYETH & BROTHER LIMITED Thiazolo - and thiazinobenzimidazoles
GB2156664A (en) * 1984-04-06 1985-10-16 Gen Foods Ltd Beverage infusion device
EP0158511A3 (en) * 1984-04-06 1987-08-19 General Foods Limited Beverage infuser device
EP0158511A2 (en) * 1984-04-06 1985-10-16 General Foods Limited Beverage infuser device
EP0173492A1 (en) * 1984-08-07 1986-03-05 Stir-n-Brew, Ltd. Coffee brewing apparatus
US4826695A (en) * 1986-03-26 1989-05-02 Joseph Tanner Beverage infusion device and method of use
US4806369A (en) * 1986-11-07 1989-02-21 Thompson Owen E Method and apparatus for making an infusion
WO1988003367A1 (en) * 1986-11-07 1988-05-19 Thompson Owen E Method and apparatus for making an infusion
US4891232A (en) * 1988-10-11 1990-01-02 Dahl Derek W Beverage infusion device
US5906845A (en) * 1994-12-09 1999-05-25 Robertson; James P. Flavoring devices
GB2311206A (en) * 1996-03-23 1997-09-24 John Edward Morgan Fisher Disposable packaging for food and beverages
GB2384689A (en) * 2001-02-02 2003-08-06 Tea Solutions Ltd Infusion device for beverage making
GB2384689B (en) * 2001-02-02 2005-06-15 Tea Solutions Ltd Device for making a beverage
WO2005013775A1 (en) * 2003-08-01 2005-02-17 Tea Solutions Limited Device for making a beverage
GB2417234A (en) * 2004-08-16 2006-02-22 G Mat Ltd Tea bag with attached handle

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PCNP Patent ceased through non-payment of renewal fee