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Package testing

This article explains the benefits of simulation testing. Furthermore, it clarifies why package testing is a necessity in the everyday life of a manufacturer. 

As an ISTA and ISO 17025 certified lab, Keystone Compliance realizes the importance of package testing. We understand the challenges and guide companies through the process. Contact us to learn why so many companies partner with Keystone to achieve their packaging needs.

What is Package Testing?

Package regulatory compliance testing is the process of testing the integrity of a package during the entire transit life cycle. The bulk of package testing involves simulating real-world conditions that a package might experience during its journey through the supply chain. 

Package integrity testing includes any units such as packaging materials, packaging components, primary packages, shipping containers, and unit loads.

Package testing can sometimes be industry-dependent. Packaging needs vary between industries due to the distribution channel and product itself. Keystone compliance can test package sustainability within all industries.

The most common industries include:

 Why Should I Test My Packages?

Companies that work with a package testing lab such as Keystone Compliance are put at ease knowing that all of their package testing needs are fulfilled under one roof.

All compliance standards require the packaging to withstand different aspects of the distribution process. Package integrity testing is used for three main reasons:

  • Reduce damage and warranty claims. Package validation testing is used to reduce the number of boxes damaged during transit. Examples of transit hazards tested at Keystone include vibrations, cold chain, temperature validation, and sterile barrier.

As thousands of manufacturers lose money from poor transportation regulatory compliance, Keystone strives to give our customers more time and energy on product development instead of testing.

  • Achieve certification standards of some vendors. Vendors such as Amazon, Home Depot, Costco, and others require specific package certifications before selling products in-store or online. The most common standards used by these vendors are ISTA Series 3 and ISTA Series 7.

Keystone Compliance is an ISTA accredited tested lab with expert laboratory engineers fluent in ISTA, ASTM, IEC, CFR, and many other package testing standards.

  • Reduce shipping costs. Shipping out hundreds of packages can drastically decrease profits. On the other hand, Keystone assists in providing insights for lighter and smaller packaging, thus saving our customers money on a daily basis.

Keystone Compliance is a nationally recognized testing lab prepared to minimize over-testing and meet all of our customers’ testing needs.

Package Simulation Test Types

Below is a list of typical standard types that Keystone tests on a regular basis.

Impact Testing: This type of package test is conducted on a pass/fail criteria. During shipment, packages encounter impacts from several factors and outside sources. Impacts such as adjacent freight jostling are meant to be simulated in this type of testing. ASTM D6344 is a common standard that Keystone evaluates.

The image on the right shows one of the many different drop test simulations that Keystone performs.

Package Testing

Altitude Testing: Altitude testing determines how pressure changes can impact packages. This type of testing is specifically used via certain modes of transportation, including, a feeder aircraft. ASTM D6653 is an important packaging standard when it comes to altitude/vacuum testing.

Vibration Testing: Our effective testing engineers use specific machines to produce randomized vibrations. The random vibration tests help evaluate the interior and exterior packing exposed to dynamic stresses. A common vibration test that Keystone complies with is ASTM D999.

Keystone owns dozens of thermal chambers, atmospheric pressure chambers, and shakers such as the one pictured on the right.

Vibration and Shock Testing

Temperature Testing: Temperature and humidity testing are used to determine how components withstand changes in weather. Keystone is fluent in all temperature and humidity tests including the popular, ISO 2233.

Expert Regulatory Package Compliance

In addition to package sustainability testing, Keystone has a full scope of expertise including ingress protection, cold chain, and military standard testing. Keystone Compliance has a full lab of test equipment which permits us to provide short lead times on scheduling.

Our team strives to give our customers more time and energy on product development instead of testing.

Request a quote to learn why so many companies partner with Keystone to achieve their ISO 17025 package testing compliance certifications.

Simulation Test Standards

Below is a small portion of Keystone’s expert compliance testing scope. Don’t see a standard you are looking for? Contact us to receive more information.

ASTM: American Society for Testing and Materials, is an international standards organization that develops and publishes technical standards for a wide range of materials, products, systems, and services.

Popular ASTM packaging standards included in Keystone’s scope consist of:

ISO: The International Organization for Standardization is an international standard-setting body composed of representatives from various national standards organizations.

Our testing engineers not only provide expert testing but also assist with the troubleshooting process. Some of the more common ISO standards are listed below:

ISTA: The Internation Safe Transit Association is a member-based nonprofit that empowers organizations, and their people, to minimize product damage throughout distribution and optimize resource usage through effective package design.

Belew are some of Keystone’s most popular ISTA standards:

TAPPI: Technical Association of the Pulp and Paper Industry, is a group of engineers, scientists, and others involved in the areas of pulp, and paper products. This includes some allied areas of packaging such as corrugated fiberboard, flexible packaging, lamination, coatings, and extrusion.

Common TAPPI Keystone complies to includes: