US20030230052A1 - Plastic bag and packaging method using same - Google Patents

Plastic bag and packaging method using same Download PDF

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Publication number
US20030230052A1
US20030230052A1 US10/170,522 US17052202A US2003230052A1 US 20030230052 A1 US20030230052 A1 US 20030230052A1 US 17052202 A US17052202 A US 17052202A US 2003230052 A1 US2003230052 A1 US 2003230052A1
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United States
Prior art keywords
bags
bag
web
tear line
supply
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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.)
Abandoned
Application number
US10/170,522
Inventor
Jeffrey Rabiea
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Rabiea Jeffrey D.
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Publication date
Application filed by Rabiea Jeffrey D. filed Critical Rabiea Jeffrey D.
Priority to US10/170,522 priority Critical patent/US20030230052A1/en
Publication of US20030230052A1 publication Critical patent/US20030230052A1/en
Application status is Abandoned legal-status Critical

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    • 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
    • B65D33/00Details of, or accessories for, sacks or bags
    • B65D33/002Rolls, strips or like assemblies of bags
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B65CONVEYING; PACKING; STORING; HANDLING THIN OR FILAMENTARY MATERIAL
    • B65BMACHINES, APPARATUS OR DEVICES FOR, OR METHODS OF, PACKAGING ARTICLES OR MATERIALS; UNPACKING
    • B65B43/00Forming, feeding, opening or setting-up containers or receptacles in association with packaging
    • B65B43/26Opening or distending bags; Opening, erecting, or setting-up boxes, cartons, or carton blanks
    • B65B43/267Opening of bags interconnected in a web
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B65CONVEYING; PACKING; STORING; HANDLING THIN OR FILAMENTARY MATERIAL
    • B65HHANDLING THIN OR FILAMENTARY MATERIAL, e.g. SHEETS, WEBS, CABLES
    • B65H23/00Registering, tensioning, smoothing or guiding webs
    • B65H23/04Registering, tensioning, smoothing or guiding webs longitudinally
    • B65H23/06Registering, tensioning, smoothing or guiding webs longitudinally by retarding devices, e.g. acting on web-roll spindle
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B31MAKING ARTICLES OF PAPER, CARDBOARD OR MATERIAL WORKED IN A MANNER ANALOGOUS TO PAPER; WORKING PAPER, CARDBOARD OR MATERIAL WORKED IN A MANNER ANALOGOUS TO PAPER
    • B31BMAKING CONTAINERS OF PAPER, CARDBOARD OR MATERIAL WORKED IN A MANNER ANALOGOUS TO PAPER
    • B31B2155/00Flexible containers made from webs
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B31MAKING ARTICLES OF PAPER, CARDBOARD OR MATERIAL WORKED IN A MANNER ANALOGOUS TO PAPER; WORKING PAPER, CARDBOARD OR MATERIAL WORKED IN A MANNER ANALOGOUS TO PAPER
    • B31BMAKING CONTAINERS OF PAPER, CARDBOARD OR MATERIAL WORKED IN A MANNER ANALOGOUS TO PAPER
    • B31B2160/00Shape of flexible containers
    • B31B2160/10Shape of flexible containers rectangular and flat, i.e. without structural provision for thickness of contents
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B31MAKING ARTICLES OF PAPER, CARDBOARD OR MATERIAL WORKED IN A MANNER ANALOGOUS TO PAPER; WORKING PAPER, CARDBOARD OR MATERIAL WORKED IN A MANNER ANALOGOUS TO PAPER
    • B31BMAKING CONTAINERS OF PAPER, CARDBOARD OR MATERIAL WORKED IN A MANNER ANALOGOUS TO PAPER
    • B31B70/00Making flexible containers, e.g. envelopes or bags
    • B31B70/74Auxiliary operations
    • B31B70/81Forming or attaching accessories, e.g. opening devices, closures or tear strings
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B31MAKING ARTICLES OF PAPER, CARDBOARD OR MATERIAL WORKED IN A MANNER ANALOGOUS TO PAPER; WORKING PAPER, CARDBOARD OR MATERIAL WORKED IN A MANNER ANALOGOUS TO PAPER
    • B31BMAKING CONTAINERS OF PAPER, CARDBOARD OR MATERIAL WORKED IN A MANNER ANALOGOUS TO PAPER
    • B31B70/00Making flexible containers, e.g. envelopes or bags
    • B31B70/74Auxiliary operations
    • B31B70/92Delivering
    • B31B70/94Delivering singly or in succession
    • B31B70/942Delivering singly or in succession by winding up
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B31MAKING ARTICLES OF PAPER, CARDBOARD OR MATERIAL WORKED IN A MANNER ANALOGOUS TO PAPER; WORKING PAPER, CARDBOARD OR MATERIAL WORKED IN A MANNER ANALOGOUS TO PAPER
    • B31BMAKING CONTAINERS OF PAPER, CARDBOARD OR MATERIAL WORKED IN A MANNER ANALOGOUS TO PAPER
    • B31B70/00Making flexible containers, e.g. envelopes or bags
    • B31B70/74Auxiliary operations
    • B31B70/92Delivering
    • B31B70/94Delivering singly or in succession
    • B31B70/946Delivering singly or in succession the bags being interconnected

Abstract

A plastic bag is supplied as a continuously attached length of plural bags, each bag being separated from adjacent bags along a supply length by a perforated tear line. A seal which runs codirectionally with the tear line forms a closed bottom for each bag, such that when a bag is separated along the tear line from a remainder of the supply, the bag is enclosed along three of its four edges enabling containment of produce or other items placed therein via the opening at the fourth, and remaining edge of the bag which is coextensive with the perforation line. The supply length of bags is advantageously stored on a roll, fan folded, bundlized or compactly stored in other suitable manner permitting advancement of consecutive bags when pulled out of the stored condition by a user. The perforation tear line cuts entirely through the continuous web supply of bags, however, the perforation along one side the bag is broken, such that the bag presents an open flap through which contents can be added to each bag prior to its removal from the remainder of the continuous bag supply. A method of using the bags for packaging of produce, groceries or other articles generally selected at point of sale and which are generally segregated by type for later pricing by weight or unit, permits a user to at least partially fill a bag prior to removal from a continuous supply of plural bags.

Description

    BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
  • The present invention relates to a plastic bag which is dispensable from a roll or other bulk supply, and a method for conveniently packaging grocery items, particularly produce including fruits, vegetables, and other consumer items at place of purchase using said plastic bags. [0001]
  • Plastic bags stored in bulk, for example, on rolls containing a plurality of attached bags, have conventionally been provided in supermarkets and other locations to provide the consumer with a convenient means for packaging items, such as, for example, articles of produce and other groceries, selected for purchase. Since, typically, fruits and vegetables are uniquely priced per unit of weight, packaging each type of produce in its own separate bag permits simplified determination of price at checkout, while concomitantly protecting the contents from contamination, damage and moisture loss. The lightweight nature of the bags obviates the need for taking a tare weight of the bag prior to weighing of the merchandise, further adding to the convenience attendant their use . [0002]
  • Heretofore, such bags have typically been provided on a continuous roll having perforations between adjacent bags to readily permit separation of individual bags from the remainder of the roll. Once removed, the bag is opened at the perforation line and contents may then be inserted therein. Since the attached bags are initially separated by an unbroken perforation line while on the roll, the bags must be removed from the roll in order to permit filling with produce or other items. This can prove inconvenient, particularly if a person's hands are full. In addition, it is often difficult to open the bags since, as a result of the manufacturing process, the bag opening may cling together, sometimes as the result of static electricity, and be difficult to open, particularly when the user's hands are cold or excessively dry. [0003]
  • A plastic bag supplied from a continuously attached supply of bags which would permit the user to easily open and fill each bag as it was dispensed from the roll without requiring that the bag be first removed from the continuous supply would, therefore, be highly desirable. [0004]
  • Furthermore, a method of packaging using such plastic bag would also provide advantage over conventionally practiced point-of-purchase packaging methods by virtue of the fact that the bag would be pre-opened before its removal from the roll or other supply. [0005]
  • Accordingly, it is an object of the invention to provide a bulk-supplied plastic bag which overcomes the drawbacks of the prior art. [0006]
  • It is a further object of the invention to provide a plastic bag, a plurality of which may be stored as a continues web on a roll or other convenient bulk unit, and which, when unrolled or otherwise dispensed, may be filled prior to detachment from the rest of the bags stored as a continuously detached bulk supply, such as a supply roll. [0007]
  • It is yet a further object of the invention to provide a method of packaging which utilizes plastic bags produced and supplied in accordance with the invention for a conveniently packaging point-of-purchase items, such as groceries, produce and the like. [0008]
  • SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
  • In accordance with these and other objects of the invention, there is provided a plastic bag which is supplied as a continuously attached length of plural bags, each being separated from adjacent bags along a supply length by a perforated tear line. A seal, which runs codirectionally with the tear line, forms a closed bottom for each bag, such that when a bag is separated along the tear line from a remainder of the supply length, the bag is enclosed along three of its four edges, enabling containment of produce or other items placed therein via the opening at the fourth and remaining edge of the bag which is coextensive with the perforation line. The supply length of bags is advantageously stored on a roll, fan folded, bundlized or compactly stored in other suitable manner permitting advancement of consecutive bags when pulled out of the stored condition by a user. The perforation cuts entirely through the continuous web supply of bags, however, the perforation along one side the bag is broken, such that the bag, while still being attached to the supply of bags presents an open end through which contents can be added to each bag prior to its removal from the remainder of the continuous bag supply. [0009]
  • Briefly stated, a method of using the above described bags for packaging of produce, groceries or other articles generally selected at point-of-purchase, and which are generally segregated by type for later pricing by weight or unit, permits a user to at least partially fill a bag prior to removal from a continuous supply of plural bags. [0010]
  • Although not intended to be limiting to the invention as broadly contemplated, bags produced in accordance with the invention will advantageously present dimensions between about 10″w×14″h and about 12″w×20″h. Such dimensions are deemed to provide a suitable accomodating volume to meet the needs of a consumer encountered in connection with the above range of uses. In addition, although similarly not intended to be limiting to practice of the disclosed method in accordance with the invention, a wall thickness of the bags not exceeding about 1.40 mils (thousandths of an inch) is deemed advantageous to practice of the invention. More preferably, a wall thickness of the bags produced in accordance with the invention lies in a range of about 0.35 mils to about 0.9 mils (or an approximate range of 8.75 microns to 25 microns). [0011]
  • The above, and other objects, features and advantages of the present invention will become apparent from the following description read in conjunction with the accompanying drawings.[0012]
  • BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
  • FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a roll of plastic bags in accordance with an embodiment of the invention shown partially unrolled; [0013]
  • FIG. 2 is a schematic view of a production line for producing a length of continuously attached bags in accordance with an embodiment of the invention; and [0014]
  • FIG. 3 is a schematic view of a rewinding station for providing a desired orientation of an opening of the bags relative to the continuous supply when dispensed therefrom.[0015]
  • DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION
  • Turning now to the figures, and in particular, FIG. 1, a plurality of continuously attached bags provided in accordance with the invention are depicted generally at [0016] 10. The bags 10, which include individual bags 10′, are supplied from a continuous bulk supply, which is conveniently, in the depicted example, provided in the form of a roll 1. The bags 10 are formed as a continuous web, each bag 10′ being separated from an adjacent bag 10′ by a perforated tear line 2 which extends through the web of bags 10 crosswise to a supply length of the continuous web of bags 10. Each bag 10′ is also sealed adjacent to the perforated tear lines 2 along a seal 3, such that when the bag 10′ is removed from the continuous web of bags 10, it can suitably retain contents placed therein.
  • In accordance with the invention, each bag [0017] 10′ is pre-opened along the perforation tear line 2 during manufacture by breaking the perforation on one side of the bag 10′ only, thereby forming a flap 4 providing an entry to the interior of each bag 10′ through which produce or other items can be inserted without requiring removal of bag 10′ from the continuous supply of bags 10. At least a portion of the perforation 3 on the remaining side of the supply of bags 10 remains unbroken, thereby maintaining attachment of bag 10′ from a remainder of bags 10 until intentionally detached by a user.
  • Use of the bags [0018] 10 produced in accordance with embodiment of the invention is intended to provide particular advantage in the specific venue of groceries, produce stores, supermarkets, etc., and in accordance with which, articles generally provided as bulk commodities and selected by consumer at point-of-purchase, and which items are routinely segregated by particular type for later unique pricing by weight or unit, may be conveniently packaged and brought to a register for checkout. Such advantageous use permits a user (i.e., most commonly a consumer) to at least partially fill a bag prior to removal from a continuous supply of plural bags, providing added convenience and shopping ease.
  • Although not intended to be limiting to the invention as broadly contemplated, bags produced in accordance with the invention will advantageously present dimensions between about 10″×14″ and about 12″ and 20″ (width×height). Such dimensions are deemed to provide a suitable accommodating volume to meet the needs of a consumer utilizing the bags [0019] 10 within the above range of uses. Further, a preferred wall thickness of the bags produced in accordance with the invention will not exceed about 1.40 mils (thousandths of an inch), and more preferably lies in a range of about 0.35 mils to about 0.9 mils (or an approximate range of 8.75 microns to 25 microns)
  • Referring now to FIG. 2, a conversion machine and method of use of such machine for manufacturing the bags [0020] 10 in accordance with the invention is shown schematically at 20. It is noted that the described production line utilizing conversion machine 20 is disclosed merely as a production example of the bags 10 according to the invention, and is not intended to be exhaustive of possible conventional and inventive machinery, and production methods, which could be employed with suitable effectiveness in achieving the objectives of the invention, without departure from the invention.
  • As shown in FIG. 2, a supply of raw material, for example extruded thermoplastic tubing (e.g. polyethylene, polypropylene, or any other suitable plastic material heretofore known or developed in the future, etc.), is fed from a payout roll [0021] 21 as a web 22 via feed and guide rollers 23, using conventionally practiced transport and operational technology encountered in the typical manufacture of continuous plastic bags. The web of raw material 22 is directed to a rotating drum 24 about which the web 22 is contactably guided. A heat sealer 25 is moved radially inward to the drum 24 to contact the web of raw material 22 at intermittent intervals, and circumferentially follows a rotational movement of the drum 24 while in contact with the web 22, thereby heat-sealing the web at a selected spaced apart distance determined by a desired bag height, and forming seal 3 shown in FIG. 1. When brought out of contact with the web 22, heat sealer 25 is moved circumferentially backward to return same to a starting position in anticipation of a subsequent sealing operation as described.
  • The web of raw material next passes to a serrator [0022] 26 which includes a perforating blade 27 which rotates with serrator 26 and contacts and perforates the web 22 drawn between the serrator and a stationary support bar 28, to thereby form perforation tear line 2 (see FIG. 1) in the web 22 at a location therealong adjacent to the previously formed seal 3.
  • A scuffer section [0023] 29 is provided downstream of the serrator 26 for purposes of breaking the perforation tear line on one side of the web 22. Scuffer section 29 includes a support, conveniently provided in the form of a rotating drum 29 a, and a scuffer pad assembly 29 b which rotates counter-directional to rotating drum 29 a. Scuffer pad assembly includes one or more scuffer pads 29 b′ made of suitable material, for example, rubber, which presents sufficient friction to open the bags on one side only along perforation tear line 2, and which intermittently contacts the web at the perforation tear line 2 as scuffer pad assembly 29 b rotates. It will be understood that the pressure exerted by the scuffer pads 29 a′ on the web 22 will be adjusted based upon various parameters including bag thickness, perforation characteristics, material thickness, etc., such that one side of the perforation tear line 2 is broken, while the integrity of perforation tear line 2 on a remaining side distant from the scuffer pads 29 b′ is at least partially maintained.
  • If a width of the bags [0024] 10 produced in accordance with the invention requires adjustment from that of the extruded tubing transported as web of raw material 22, a slit sealer 31 is provided which longitudinally slits and heat-seals the web 22 at a desired distance inwardly of the original outermost edge of web of raw material 22.
  • The web [0025] 22 is then subjected to an air test to establish that the bags 10 have been successfully scuffed open by utilizing a blower nozzle 32 which directs a stream of air to open the flap 4 (see also FIG. 1) in bags 10.
  • The web [0026] 22, which has now been converted to the continuously attached length of bags 10 shown in FIG. 1, is wound onto a pickup roll 33.
  • Because of the particular configuration of the conversion machine [0027] 20 and the nature of transport of the web 22, a further step is required to orient the flap 4 as shown in FIG. 1. Turning now to FIG. 3, the pickup roll 33 serves as a payout roll when transferred to a rewinding station 40, in which it is rewound onto a rewind roll 34. As shown schematically, the flaps 4 are originally oriented such that the openings in the bags 10 would face downward if dispensed from the roll 33. By rewinding the bags onto the rewind roll , the desired orientation is achieved, as shown in FIG. 1, in which roll 1 corresponds to that produced on rewind roll 34.
  • Having described preferred embodiments of the invention with reference to the accompanying drawings, it is to be understood that the invention is not limited to those precise embodiments, and that various changes and modifications may be effected therein by one skilled in the art without departing from the scope or spirit of the invention as defined in the appended claims. [0028]

Claims (14)

What is claimed is:
1. A method of packaging point-of-purchase items, comprising the steps of:
producing bags as a continuous web, each of said bags being separated from an adjacent bag by a perforated tear line which extends through the web of bags crosswise to a length of the continuous web of bags, each of said bags being sealed along a sealing line adjacent to the perforated tear line, such that when a particular bag is removed from the continuous web of bags, it can suitably retain contents placed therein;
breaking said perforation line on one side of said continuous web, while retaining at least a partial integrity of said perforation tear line on a remaining side of said web such that a flap defining an entry to each of said bags is formed prior to use; and
loading the point-of-purchase items into at least one of said bags though said entry prior to removal of said at least one bag from a remainder of said web.
2. A method according to claim 1, wherein said continuous web is comprised of thermoplastic tubing, and said step of producing includes heat sealing said tubing at selected intervals to thereby form said sealing line.
3. A method according to claim 1, wherein said point-of-purchase items include items provided by a vender as a bulk commodity for selection and repackaging by a consumer.
4. A method according to claim 3, wherein said bulk commodity includes at least one of fruits, vegetables, nuts and spices.
5. A method according to claim 1, wherein respective width and height dimensions of said bags measured in inches are in a range of about 10×15 to about 12×20.
6. A method according to claim 1, wherein a wall thickness of said bags does not exceed about 1.4 mils.
7. A method according to claim 1, wherein a wall thickness of said bags is in a range of about 0.35 mils to about 0.9 mils.
8. A method according to claim 1, further comprising unrolling said continuous web of bags from a dispensable supply roll prior to said step of loading.
9. A web of plastic bags, comprising:
mutually-connected individual bags each being attached to an adjacent one of said bags by a perforated tear line, said bags being opened along at least a portion of said tear line to form a flap defining an entry into each of said bags through which point-of-purchase items are insertable into said bags, said bags having a volume sufficient to contain a quantity of produce.
10. A web of bags according to claim 9, wherein respective width and height dimensions of said bags measured in inches are in a range of about 10×15 to about 12×20.
11. A web of bags according to claim 9, wherein a wall thickness of said bags does not exceed about 1.4 mils.
12. A web of bags according to claim 9, wherein a wall thickness of said bags is in a range of about 0.35 mils to about 0.9 mils.
13. A web of bags according to claim 9, wherein said bags are wound on a dispensable supply roll.
14. A web of bags according to claim 9, wherein said produce includes at least one of fruits, vegetables, nuts and spices.
US10/170,522 2002-06-13 2002-06-13 Plastic bag and packaging method using same Abandoned US20030230052A1 (en)

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US10/170,522 US20030230052A1 (en) 2002-06-13 2002-06-13 Plastic bag and packaging method using same

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US10/170,522 US20030230052A1 (en) 2002-06-13 2002-06-13 Plastic bag and packaging method using same
CA002487981A CA2487981A1 (en) 2002-06-13 2003-05-30 Plastic bag and packaging method using same
AU2003238820A AU2003238820A1 (en) 2002-06-13 2003-05-30 Plastic bag and packaging method using same
PCT/US2003/017032 WO2003106269A1 (en) 2002-06-13 2003-05-30 Plastic bag and packaging method using same
TW092116046A TWI222418B (en) 2002-06-13 2003-06-13 Web of plastic bags and packaging method using same
US10/461,047 US6945695B2 (en) 2002-06-13 2003-06-13 Plastic bag and packaging method using same
US10/893,600 US6948294B2 (en) 2002-06-13 2004-07-16 Method of packaging point-of-purchase items

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US10/170,522 Abandoned US20030230052A1 (en) 2002-06-13 2002-06-13 Plastic bag and packaging method using same
US10/461,047 Active 2022-08-30 US6945695B2 (en) 2002-06-13 2003-06-13 Plastic bag and packaging method using same
US10/893,600 Active - Reinstated US6948294B2 (en) 2002-06-13 2004-07-16 Method of packaging point-of-purchase items

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US10/461,047 Active 2022-08-30 US6945695B2 (en) 2002-06-13 2003-06-13 Plastic bag and packaging method using same
US10/893,600 Active - Reinstated US6948294B2 (en) 2002-06-13 2004-07-16 Method of packaging point-of-purchase items

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US (3) US20030230052A1 (en)
AU (1) AU2003238820A1 (en)
CA (1) CA2487981A1 (en)
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WO (1) WO2003106269A1 (en)

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US6945695B2 (en) 2005-09-20
US20040255558A1 (en) 2004-12-23
WO2003106269A1 (en) 2003-12-24
US20030232708A1 (en) 2003-12-18
US6948294B2 (en) 2005-09-27
AU2003238820A1 (en) 2003-12-31
CA2487981A1 (en) 2003-12-24
TWI222418B (en) 2004-10-21

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