I Know About CD and DVD Duplication But What About Packaging?

OK, so you have brilliant content. Your printed image on the disc is fantastic. It’s a CD so you place it in a CD Jewel Case or a DVD in a DVD case or a Blu-ray in a Blu-ray case. It’s easy isn’t? How about standing out from the crowd? What about multiple disc sets? How about something quirky or different.

The trouble with packaging is volume. Over the years I have advised people who have approached me with fantastic packaging ideas. I remember one young couple very excitedly telling me all about their project and their plans to package their retail product in a box manufactured from injection plastic, roughly the shape of a computer mouse. I watched their faces drop in horror as we established the cost of their retail product at under € 0.30 and tooling alone to be in excess of € 15,000 so rendering the idea economically inappropriate. I advised them to go with a small card box, nicely printed and shrink wrapped. Cost: € 0.20.

The advent of the DigiPak has given an alternative to the standard Jewel Case or DVD Case in retail circles, but there are many alternatives out there. How about the E-Jector case or a booklet with a paper sleeve in the rear wrapped in a nice cover, like Damien Rice’s “O” CD. As close, I think, as he could get to environmentally friendly. We have recently produced a product with a card insert to hold the disc and placed it in a printed bag, allowing interaction between internal and external print. These bags have the added advantage of being available with or without retail hooks. Multi disc sets we usually address with a UniKeep box, a combination of a hard plastic case and disc sleeves. Clear booklet wallets are another alternative for multi disc sets.

Of course, if you have a volume order then you are able to dictate your design a little more. If you require 100,000 discs, then a sleeve manufacturer may well manufacture to your design, dependent on the capabilities of their equipment. Different equipment will produce in different ways. For instance a Univenture U-1000 machine cannot produce a tuck flap sleeve but will produce an open top sleeve, or the distinctive lift flap sleeve usually associated with Univenture, in poly or a poly non-woven combination.

Materials can be expensive too. Vinyl products will be much more expensive than polypropylene products. For the environmentally aware amongst us the advent of “green” polypropylene (agents mixed with the poly will contribute to faster breakdown of the material in landfill) give us a “friendly”, albeit more expensive alternative.

Recent years have seen an upsurge in the use of PLA. This material is manufactured from corn starch, and whilst this has more claims to being environmentally friendly than other materials it’s applications are limited. Personally I would recommend this for one off uses only. Previously I have been involved in manufacturing name badges out of PLA so the organizers at events can ask the public to dispose of the paper portion of their ticket in a paper bin and the PLA portion in a separate receptacle as they exit the event. The problem with PLA is that it marks. Once folded, unlike poly, that mark is there for good. But this should not discourage people from using this material. I feel that you just need to be aware of it’s limitations. A disc sleeve manufactured from PLA for an environmental promotional CD / DVD would be most appropriate.

So next time you are ordering your discs don’t just think Jewel Case or DVD case. Have a good think about how you can stand out from the crowd.

Post time: 04-17-2017