Tamper-evident band

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break-away band on aluminum cap
Removal of integral band allows hinged snap-cap to function
Tearable metal band on pharmaceutical bottle
Shrink band for secondary seal on bottle

A tamper-evident band or security ring serves as a tamper resistant or tamper evident function to a screw cap, lid, or closure.[1] The term tamper proof is sometimes used but is considered a misnomer given that pilfering is still technically possible[2]

A security band can be integral with the cap or can be a separate package component. It is a plastic or metal structure around the circumference (usually) of the closure that is often found attached below a closure in bottles, jars, and tubs.

Several variations have been developed for caps, lids, and closures.[3] [4][5][6] The use of custom printing and security printing is available. Perforations or other areas of weakness are often used to initiate and control a tear. Sometimes engineered frangibility is used for break-away functions.

While tamper-evident bands are not considered a challenge for recycling, it is important that the band stays attached to the cap in case of refillable bottles, because it is hard to remove the rings from intact bottles in an economical way.[1]

The opening ring is a tamper warning: if the seal between the ring and the cap is broken, it is an indication that the cap has been opened.[1][7]

Purposes[edit]

Security opening rings might have several possible purposes:

  • Provide clear evidence of container being opened
  • Deter tampering
  • Deter package pilferage
  • Deter product adulteration
  • Improved closure strength during shipping
  • Regulatory requirement (sometimes)

Roll-on metal closures[edit]

When an aluminum or plastic bottle cap has an integral band, it is usually connected by thin bridges. They can be molded along with the cap or slit afterwards.[1] When unscrewing the cap, the frangible ring breaks: the ring can separate from the cap, and two separate pieces remain, the sealing piece and the leftover ring; or the broken ring can form a "pigtail" still attached to the cap.

Shrink bands[edit]

Separate bands of shrink film can be placed over the closure and tightened in a shrink tunnel.[8] Some have perforations or nicks to help initiate the tear.

Other[edit]

Most standard pressure sensitive tapes do not have a high degree of tamper evidence. Some special security tapes have additional tamper evident features which offer better tamper evidence. Some have intentional weakness which cause breakage or delamination; others have hidden messages which appear upon opening.

Examples[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d Ottmar Brandau (2012). Bottles, Preforms and Closures: A Design Guide for PET Packaging. William Andrew. pp. 134–. ISBN 978-1-4377-3526-0. 
  2. ^ H. Lockhart; Frank Albert Paine (1996). Packaging of Pharmaceuticals and Healthcare Products. Springer. pp. 125–. ISBN 978-0-7514-0167-7. 
  3. ^ US 3904062 A, Grussen, "Tamper-proof and loss-proof screw-type bottle cap", published 1975 
  4. ^ US 5913437 A, Xiaoli Ma, "Tamper evident bottle cap", published 1999 
  5. ^ US 6550626 B1, Randall, "Closure lid and resealable closure system with tamper-evident features", published 2003 
  6. ^ US 4732293 A, Landis, "Tear strip closure for a container with a security ring US 4732293 A", published 1988 
  7. ^ A.J. Mitchell (1990). Formulation and Production Carbonated Soft Drinks. Springer. pp. 170–. ISBN 978-0-442-30287-0. 
  8. ^ US5390477A, Sowdwn, "System for applying a heat shrinkable sleeve to a container", published 1991 

Further reading[edit]

  • Yam, K. L., "Encyclopedia of Packaging Technology", John Wiley & Sons, 2009, ISBN 978-0-470-08704-6
  • "Improving Tamper-Evident Packaging: Problems, Tests and Solutions", Jack L. Rosette, 1992