Glossary of Terms


Blister Packaging
A packaging technique which involves the heat seal of a rigid, thermoformed outer shell which houses a product, to a coated back card. A method commonly used for retail items.

The assembly or sorting of many different items in a pre-specified order or arrangement.

Contract Packaging
A general term referring to a service that is performed on a product utilizing various assembly and/or packaging techniques intended for enhancement of a product.

Contract Supplier
A source that performs a manufacturing service for a customer.

Contract Warehousing
A term referring to a service that specializes in material handling, storage, inventory control and distribution of a companies’ product or products.

Hand Assembly
Tasks that are completed by human hands or manual labor.

Heat Sealing
A process by which heat is introduced to 2 substrates to seal them together. Heat sealing is a generic term and is part of many packaging processes, but it mainly refers to the closure of polybags.

The act of physically sending out a product to a contract supplier for assembly, packaging, or manufacturing.

Pack Out
The method and quantity associated with the last step in handling a product that needs to be shipped out.

Pick & Pack
This is part of the order fulfillment process which includes the physical locating or “picking” of a part out of inventory, and then packing the part into a box for shipment.

This is a task that may include either applying a label over an existing label on a product, removing an existing label prior to applying a new label, or just applying a label to an original product or box.

Redoing or undoing an existing type of packaging to reflect new standards.

The act of undoing or redoing a task that was last completed incorrectly.

Secondary Operation
Manufacturing step that comes after initial process because it cannot be done “in-line” or simultaneously.

Shrink Wrapping
Probably the most common of all packaging methods, shrink wrapping is accomplished by trimming a piece of shrinkable film around an object, and then sending it through a heat “tunnel” which “shrinks” the film to conform to the exact size of an outer box or product. This is a tamper resistant covering that is very common at the retail level on products such as gift sets, software, and games, to name a few. The gloss effect created by the film tends to give a product or box a richer appearance.

Skin Packaging
A packaging technique whereby a film is sucked down over a product and onto a preprinted “skin card”. As heat is introduced, the adhesive coating on the card and the Surlyn film adhere together. This is an attractive packaging option and is preferred for retail because the product is displayed clearly yet is protected by the transparent covering. It is a cost-effective solution for higher volume runs.

The separation of good versus bad usually accomplished through visual inspection.

The act of outsourcing a product or service to another company.

Value Added
A reference to an additional operation or service that is done by a supplier to a product or products that provides a customer with a more complete solution.