Extended Narrative Format

(Entry Title)

  1. Innovation (if applicable, explain how your package applies to each subhead in detail):
    • Creative application
    • Technical Advances
    • Design Advances
    • New material applications
    • Transfer of one technology from another use or industry
  2. Protection (if applicable, explain how your package applies to each subhead in detail):
    • Protection and biological, chemical and distribution requirements
    • Testing methods for protection
    • Do testing methods address protection needs?
    • Has package met testing requirements?
  3. Economics (if applicable, explain how your package applies to each subhead in detail):
    • Cost reduction factors
    • How were costs reduced?
    • Life cycle issues
  4. Performance (if applicable, explain how your package applies to each subhead in detail):
    • How does package fill, open, re-close, store
    • How does it run on machinery (machinery efficiencies?)
    • Overall integration (production line, distribution)
    • New benefits to end users
  5. Marketing (if applicable, explain how your package applies to each subhead in detail):
    • Structure/graphics and how they contribute to image, shelf-impact
    • If redesigned, how did it improve acceptability of package?
  6. Environmental Impact (if applicable, explain how your package applies to each subhead in detail):
    • How does package address environmental considerations

AmeriStar Package Awards - Extended Narrative Example

A Linear Tear Medical Device pouch allows easier opening than current peel open design. (Bud Damiano, 2014)


  • The package demonstrates an application of a “new idea.”
    • Current medical device pouches use a chevron type opening feature that can be difficult to initiate opening. The new linear tear design allows easier access by grasping the large tear notch and tearing the pouch open. The film was designed to tear horizontally consistently allowing 100% opening of the pouch for product removal.
  • The package demonstrates a creative use of existing ideas.
    • The tear open feature is used typically for foil package design in the food industry. Application for a low cost packaging material was applied to the Medical device package.
  • The package makes use of new design, material or technique.
    • Very few materials in LDPE allow for linear tear constantly. SteriPack Ltd. worked in conjunction with Boston Scientific to develop a film formulation that consistently performed the linear tear opening with ease of tearing. Additionally SteriPack Ltd. developed a 3 sided weld seal pouch with 4 mm seals to ensure sterile integrity.
  • The package reflects important new marketing strategies.
    • Marketing at Boston Scientific emphasized the reduction in pouch and carton size as an advantage for the customer. The reduced size allowed justification for smaller storage space and reducing the environmental carbon emission.
  • The package reflects new manufacturing advances.
    • The smaller size pouch allowed production to remove a twist required to constrain the device in the current pouch. The customer did not like the twist due to knotting of the device when uncoiling. The new pouch constrained the coil so the twist was eliminated during packaging of the device.

Product Protection

  • The testing specified sufficiently addresses the need for protection for this application.
    • Distribution testing included environmental conditioning, drop and vibration along with altitude testing. Design modifications during package development were required to pass the testing to meet marketing and product specifications. Marketing was pleased with the final design and supported the design improvements to the original design.


  • The package addresses a specific economic concern.
    • The potential for seal breach with a high profile product was a main concern with this product. A sterile barrier breach with a medical device is a very expensive event. The weld seal design removed seal breach potential from occurring and allowed for a reduced size package.
  • The package design results in cost savings. Cost savings may be demonstrated by any or all of the following:
    • Distribution Improvements
      • More product can fit inside a shipping container translating to a reduction in distribution cost.
    • Damage Reduction
      • Open seal potential is removed with the new design.
    • Packing/Processing Efficiencies
      • The smaller package constrains the device preventing uncoiling during the sealing process.
    • Material Costs
      • The new pouch design uses lower cost LDPE and removes the need for film lamination and a large amount of Tyvek material which is a higher priced material.

Package Performance

  • The package is easily filled, opened, dispensed, reclosed, stored.
    • The new design allows for easier product insertion and sealing process in manufacturing. The new design allows for easier opening by the customer. The smaller package allows the customer to reinsert the device into the package without it uncoiling during the procedure.
  •  It can be run on existing packaging machinery.
    • The new design ran on customized machinery that was designed with air evacuation to allow for easier pack-out in cartons. The same equipment allowed the current package to be sealed more efficiently.
  • The package offers significant new benefits in handling, storage and warehousing.
    • Ocean shipping containers now hold more product due to the package redesign. One of the configuration redesigns allowed for 50% additional product per pallet. This eliminated 1,200 pallets per year in shipping. This also reduced the pallet handling labor in our distribution warehouse.


  • The structural design contributes to product image or shelf impact.
    • The reduced size allows the hospital to fit more product in the same space. The redesigned package did not negatively impact the customer’s perception of the product and approved the convenience of opening easier.
  • The package design improves or contributes to acceptance of the product.
    • Several VOC were conducted with customers to verify that the package change would not negatively impact the customer. Boston Scientific is the number one supplier for this device and marketing wanted to ensure customer satisfaction of the new package design.

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