Past and Present Roles of Packages in Logistics and towards the Future

Märit Beckeman, Caroline Bramklev

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingPaper in conference proceedingpeer-review


Throughout history packages are used to contain, store and transport goods and products. In early days it was a matter of gathering and storing locally, whereas in today’s global enterprises packaging is an important issue in the operational management in networks of functions and/or divisions, often separated geographically around the world. Packaging has become a part of the process of efficiently and effectively managing a product’s life-cycle, i.e. from idea to development, production, distribution (including storage), sales and use to environmental concerns. How is the current situation likely to change in the future?
The objective of this article is to provide an overview of the interfaces between package and logistics, and create a conceptual model of these interfaces. This is done by exploring the past and- to some extent- present roles of two food package cases, selected through extensive literature reviews: the tin can in the UK around 1850 and the plastic coated carton for frozen food in Sweden in the 1950s. The influence from society and environment is compared and supported by the determining factors of competitive advantage in Porter’s diamond. The life-cycle of the packages, from development to disposal/re-use, is analysed by the gallery technique, based on dispositional effects. This leads into a cross-case comparison and a discussion, based on indications/trends of functions and trade-offs between packages, logistics and other factors, and a conceptual model. The creation of efficient packages and logistics is depending on: the time period, available technologies, innovations, and social context.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationLogistics Research Nwork 2007 Conference Proceedings
Publication statusPublished - 2007
Event19th Annual NOFOMA Conference, 2007 - Reykjavik, Island, Reykjavik, Iceland
Duration: 2007 Jun 72007 Jun 8
Conference number: 19


Conference19th Annual NOFOMA Conference, 2007

Subject classification (UKÄ)

  • Other Mechanical Engineering

Free keywords

  • Gallery technique
  • Food packaging
  • Package design
  • Product life-cycle
  • Logistics
  • packaging logistics


Dive into the research topics of 'Past and Present Roles of Packages in Logistics and towards the Future'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this