Six pack rings

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Six pack rings

Six pack rings or six pack yokes are a set of connected plastic rings that are used in multi-packs of beverage, particularly six packs of beverage cans.

History[edit]

The six pack rings in most common use today are the descendants of an original design by ITW Hi-Cone, which first introduced them in St. Louis, Missouri in the summer of 1960.[1] Within 10 years, plastic rings had completely replaced the paper and metal based holders then common in the market.[1] Today several other manufacturers continue to produce six pack rings. As interest in multi-packs has continued to grow, other variations, including paperboard baskets and HDPE plastic can carriers have grown in popularity, providing an alternative to conventional six pack rings.[2]

Environmental concerns[edit]

Since the late 1970s,[3] six pack rings have been cited as a particularly dangerous form of marine litter. Marine wildlife have been found entangled in the rings and unable to free themselves, sometimes strangling to death.[4][5] The instruction to cut apart the rings before disposal has been a popular one from environmentalists, promoted as a simple way that consumers can help alleviate the problem.

However, six-pack rings are a relatively minor contributor to marine litter and wildlife fatalities. Fishing gear and other plastic wastes are a larger problem.[6] Six pack carrier rings are made to photo-degrade within 90 days of being littered—most less than 30 days.[7] This is in accordance with the U.S. Federal regulation for testing plastic photo-degradation, which is 40 CFR Ch. I (7–1–03 Edition)PART 238.[8]

In pop culture[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b ITW History
  2. ^ "Interest In Multipacks Picks Up". Food & Beverage Packaging. 2011-02-01. Retrieved 2011-05-02. 
  3. ^ "Should you cut up six-pack rings so they don't choke sea birds?". The Straight Dope. 1999-07-16. Retrieved 2010-09-15. 
  4. ^ "Six pack rings hazard to wildlife". Helpwildlife.com. Retrieved 2010-09-15. 
  5. ^ "Louisiana Fisheries - Fact Sheets". Seagrantfish.lsu.edu. Retrieved 2010-09-15. 
  6. ^ The Straight Dope: - Should you cut up six-pack rings?
  7. ^ "The Truth About Plastic Ring Carriers". The Straight Dope. Retrieved 2010-11-10. 
  8. ^ "40 CFR Ch I." (PDF). Retrieved 2010-09-15.