History of packaging

Get a brief insight into the history of packaging – where the paper comes from, how
Tetra Pack was created and other interesting historical facts about other materials.



The forerunner of the paper is the papyrus, which was first made and used by the Egyptians for writing sheets made of meadow cored sheets. Modern paper-like material was first made in Ancient China. The Chinese paper was made from hemp scrap using a staple. They used the yellow color to repel insects from manuscripts.

The first European paper manuscript dates back to 1109. Previously, a parchment made of sheep’s or cow’s skin was used (about 300 skins are needed to rewrite the Bible). Europeans produced paper from flax or cotton fibers. New sources of paper raw materials were also tested in an attempt to recycle straw, cabbage and litter nest, as well as Egyptian mummies for wrapping paper.

In 1798, Frenchman Nicholas-Louis Robert invented the first paper machine that made the paper as a continuous sheet of fabric, creating a roll of paper. In 1867, the first paper from wood pulp was made. In 1850, corrugated cardboard appeared, but around 1900 the use of corrugated cardboard boxes began to be widespread. In 1870, the first carton for commercial purposes was produced. In 1870, Margaret Knight began to produce paper bags as we know them today. Before that they were more like envelopes. In 1925, multi-layered paper bags for large quantities of products began to be used instead of bags.

Its popularity as packaging material paper reached the 20th century, but with the arrival of plastic packaging on the market in the late 1970s and early 1980s, its use for packaging declined rapidly. In recent years, paper has gradually regained its popularity as a more environmentally friendly packaging compared to plastic.



In the 30s of the 20th century, talented entrepreneur Rubens Rausing was operating in Sweden, owning a lithography company, which printed ordinary playing cards. It was a stable and profitable business. On the basis of this company, attempts were made to introduce many new and progressive ideas into life, such as increasing the capacity of cardboard barriers by laminating some other material to produce cardboard packaging for liquids. It was a revolutionary idea for a while, and only a few decades later (in 1953) this idea began to slowly enter the packaging industry, marking the origins of two large packaging companies – the largest liquid packer in carton boxes “Tetra Pak” and one of the largest laminated materials manufacturers and printers “Akerlund & Rausing Group”

In 1961, aseptic technology for filling drinks in cardboard packaging was introduced. This technology, which is based on the filling of a cooked-up (pasteurized) product in a sterilized cardboard package, allows months to store acidic beverages – such as milk, juice – at room temperature without treatment with preservatives. Today, aseptic technology is widely used by Latvian food industry companies.


Source: http://www.zalais.lv/files/13_17_sg_iepakojums_vesture.pdf < / a>

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