SAFE PACKAGING DESIGN COMPETITION 2006

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					SAFE PACKAGING DESIGN COMPETITION 2006
FORMAL DESIGN ENTRY
ENTRY NUMBER: SPC59
TABLE OF CONTENTS

1. MEDIA SUMMARY ..........................................................................................................3
2. FUNCTIONAL SPECIFICATIONS ...................................................................................5
2.1 FITNESS FOR PURPOSE.............................................................................................5
2.2 INNOVATION.................................................................................................................5
2.3 COST / VALUE RELATIONSHIP ...................................................................................6
2.4 SAFETY AND ERGONOMICS.......................................................................................6
2.5 ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT .........................................................................................7
2.6 USER FRIENDLINESS..................................................................................................7
2.7 APPEARANCE AND TACTILE ASPECTS ..................................................................10
2.8 CONSUMER ACCEPTANCE AND MARKETING ASPECTS ......................................10
2.9 ROBUSTNESS AND STABILITY.................................................................................10
2.10 STANDARDS COMPLIANCE ....................................................................................11
3. REFERENCE LIST ........................................................................................................12
APPENDIX A – COSTING .................................................................................................13
APPENDIX B – TEST 1 .....................................................................................................14
APPENDIX C – TEST 2 .....................................................................................................15
APPENDIX D – GRAPHIC SPECIFICATION ....................................................................16


TABLE OF FIGURES

Figure 1 – Coca-Cola bottles filled with paraffin...................................................................2
Figure 2 – The Snapper .......................................................................................................3
Figure 3 – Snapper nomenclature .......................................................................................4
Figure 4 – Groove common to all Coca-Cola screw-top bottles...........................................6
Figure 5 – A bottle of paraffin hangs out of the reach of 8-year-old Nqabakazi ...................7
Figure 6 – Affixing the Snapper to a bottle...........................................................................9
Figure 7 – Coca-Cola bottles (with Snapper affixed) being used as usual...........................9
Figure 8 – Test 1 procedure...............................................................................................14
Figure 9 – Sample Revision A3 (02) after Test 1 ...............................................................14
Figure 10 – Test 2 procedure.............................................................................................15
Figure 11 – Sample Revision A3 (01) after Test 2 .............................................................15
Figure 12 – Sample Revision A3 (02) after Test 2 .............................................................15




COVER PAGE
Figure 1 – Coca-Cola bottles filled with paraffin




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1. MEDIA SUMMARY

Many of the problems surrounding domestic paraffin-use in South Africa can be attributed
to poverty and the generally unfavourable conditions under which paraffin users often live.
Under these conditions the marketability of a product is heavily dependant on its
affordability. The Snapper – a simple plastic device that can be affixed to many of the
beverage bottles in which paraffin is commonly stored – has been designed to be
affordable for all South African paraffin users. Despite the constraints of having to keep
production costs to an absolute minimum, the Snapper presents a workable solution to the
problem of accidental paraffin ingestion. This it achieves by providing a means of

a) identifying bottles in which paraffin is or has been stored
b) storing paraffin out of the reach of young children.

Once affixed to the neck of any Coca-Cola bottle (or any similar beverage bottle), the
Snapper cannot be easily removed. It could thus become a feature by which paraffin
bottles can be clearly identified even by young children. A hole through the longer tab of
the Snapper provides a point for hanging paraffin bottles out of the reach of young
children.




Figure 2 – The Snapper


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Figure 3 – Snapper nomenclature



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2. FUNCTIONAL SPECIFICATIONS


2.1 FITNESS FOR PURPOSE

The final links of the paraffin distribution chain in South Africa are informal and largely
unregulated and yet paraffin is successfully distributed to millions of households every day.
An indispensable component of this chain is the beverage bottles in which end-users
commonly store paraffin. These bottles are robust and they can be well sealed, they are
suited to filling many common paraffin appliances and their capacities are known – this
facilitates trade. Yet, the main reason why the likes of Coca-Cola, Fanta and Lemon Twist
bottles are so widely used is probably because the beverages are so widely purchased.
This results in the bottles being readily available once their original contents have been
consumed. Very importantly, this means that the bottles come at no extra cost to the end-
user. That this system contributes to the accidental ingestion of paraffin is certainly a
serious problem but to disregard either the system’s merits or the obstacles that would be
encountered in attempting to replace it would be unwise. For this reason the Snapper does
not seek to restrict the use of beverage bottles for the storage of paraffin. Instead the
design recognises the strengths of the current system and attempts to use it as a vehicle
for reducing incidences of paraffin ingestion.


2.2 INNOVATION

A wide array of beverage bottles is used for paraffin storage, both plastic and glass,
ranging in volume from 500 ml to 2 l. The Snapper can be affixed to any of the screw-top
bottles manufactured by the Coca-Cola Company. Although this excludes the likes of milk
bottles and some of the bottles of other beverage manufacturers, many of the more
commonly used bottles are catered for. 1

In order to accommodate this range of bottles, the Snapper interfaces with one feature
common to the necks of all Coca-Cola screw-top bottles: the groove that receives the
tamper-proofing strip of the screw-caps (see Figure 4). Importantly, this positioning of the
Snapper does not prevent a cap from being screwed onto a bottle after the Snapper has
been affixed.




1
 The Coca-Cola Company controls over 75% of the South African soft-drink market (Lunsche 2006:online).
This accounts for the prevalence of Coca-Cola bottles as vessels for paraffin storage.


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Figure 4 – Groove common to all Coca-Cola screw-top bottles


2.3 COST / VALUE RELATIONSHIP

The Snapper should retail for about 60c – making it affordable for all South African paraffin
users (see Appendix A - Costing).

The product is to be die cut from sheets of polypropylene plastic. This material is cheap
and locally available. Close tessellation will limit material wastage to 12.57%. Die cutting is
inexpensive with low set-up costs and the design of the Snapper has been optimised for
this process by the avoidance of complex forms. Distribution of the Snapper should be
through the well-established paraffin distribution network with the device being sold and
applied to bottles where paraffin is sold to end-users. Distribution costs will be very low
because of the small size and low mass of the product.

The value of the Snapper in monetary terms cannot be easily established but at an
estimated cost of only 60c per unit, an excellent cost / value relationship is assured.


2.4 SAFETY AND ERGONOMICS

Chemical pneumonia, an often fatal condition, is contracted by over 55 000 children each
year in South Africa when they accidentally ingest paraffin (van Niekerk 2003:1). One of
the major factors contributing to this problem is that paraffin is commonly stored in
beverage bottles. This can result in the fuel being mistaken for water or a harmless soft-
drink (Truran 2004:2). The primary function of the Snapper is to reduce incidences of
paraffin ingestion by providing a definitive visual means of identifying beverage bottles in
which paraffin is or has been stored. Once affixed to a bottle, the Snapper – with its
distinctive form and colour – will set that bottle apart from any other bottle that does not
bear this device. Even young children could then be taught that the contents of any bottle
marked by the Snapper must be treated as dangerous.




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To assist in developing this understanding, the Snapper is marked with the well-
recognised “unhappy” icon. This marking is by no means compliant with SABS standards
regarding the labelling of dangerous substances (SABS 2002), but for young children its
meaning may be more clear than that of the SABS danger symbol for “toxic” – a skull and
crossbones. Also printed on the Snapper are the 112 and 10111 emergency numbers, the
word “PARAFFIN” and this word’s Xhosa equivalent, “PALAFINI”. The latter should
correspond to the language of the area in which a specific batch of Snappers is to be
distributed.

By setting bottles apart for paraffin use only, the Snapper may also help to reduce the risk
of paraffin being accidentally mixed with other fuels such as diesel and petrol. The Cape
Argus (2004:2) has reported of paraffin being contaminated in this way, noting the
considerable fire hazard that this presents.

A secondary function of the Snapper is to provide a means of storing paraffin out of the
reach of young children. Many South African paraffin users live in small houses or even
smaller single-room shacks where there is very little storage space. Under these
conditions there is often simply nowhere to store paraffin safely. The Snapper provides a
storage solution that is independent of furniture – all that is required is a well-positioned
nail. A bottle to which the Snapper has been affixed can be hung out of the reach of young
children by slipping the longer end of the device over the head of a nail hammered into a
doorframe, for example. The Snapper can accommodate a wide range of nails.


2.5 ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT

The most significant environmental benefit of the Snapper lies not in its frugal use of
material or the ease with which it can be recycled but rather in that it encourages the reuse
of existing plastic products, namely Coca-Cola beverage bottles.


2.6 USER FRIENDLINESS

Affixing the Snapper to a bottle is a straightforward process that does not require tools or
the development of any particular skill or even much accuracy. The process is shown in
Figure 6. The first step is to unscrew the cap from the bottle and, if the tamper-proofing
strip should remain on the bottle, to remove it too. The Snapper must then be held firmly
by both ends, positioned over the bottle and pulled down over the bottle’s neck. The holes
through the shorter tab of the Snapper provide good purchase on the device during this
process. Once the Snapper’s ring of teeth has snapped into the groove on the bottle’s
neck that is designed to receive the tamper-proofing strip, the device can then no longer
be easily removed. The presence of the Snapper has no effect on the use of the cap – it
can be replaced as usual. The Snapper will also not hinder the filling of the bottle or the
filling of appliances from the bottle (see Figure 7).




FOLLOWING PAGE
Figure 5 – A bottle of paraffin hangs out of the reach of 8-year-old Nqabakazi




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SPC59 – CONFIDENTIAL   8
Figure 6 – Affixing the Snapper to a bottle
TOP             Remove cap
LEFT            Position Snapper over bottle
CENTRE          Pull Snapper down over neck of bottle
RIGHT           Ensure teeth have snapped into position




Figure 7 – Coca-Cola bottles (with Snapper affixed) being used as usual




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2.7 APPEARANCE AND TACTILE ASPECTS

The Snapper’s form is dictated largely by its function. An effort has however been made to
soften what might have otherwise been a harsh and mechanical form at odds with the
domestic environment. Most notable in this respect is the curved treatment of the
Snapper’s tab ends and the attention that has been paid to the general proportioning of the
form. The primary red colour of the Snapper has been chosen for its symbolic value – red
being commonly associated with danger.


2.8 CONSUMER ACCEPTANCE AND MARKETING ASPECTS

The Snapper has the potential to reduce incidences of paraffin ingestion. But without
surveys and statistical analysis this benefit might only be noticed by the medical
professionals dealing with paraffin ingestion cases. The safety benefits of the Snapper will
probably go unnoticed by paraffin users. Thus marketing efforts should not focus on safety
alone. The marketability of the Snapper may in fact lie in the convenient storage solution
that it provides. This benefit will be immediately recognisable to those who find a little of
their very limited storage space being freed up. For many, the Snapper will provide a
welcome alternative to having to store an oily paraffin bottle next to food or utensils.


2.9 ROBUSTNESS AND STABILITY

Preliminary testing of the Snapper has shown that the product is robust and durable.

A 2 l Coca-Cola bottle – the largest bottle to which the Snapper can be affixed – has a
mass of 1.9 kg when filled with paraffin. The Snapper is able to support over five times this
weight (see Appendix B – Test 1). Test 2 (see Appendix C) involved hanging up a full
bottle by the Snapper and then repeatedly raising and dropping – rather than carefully
lowering – the bottle into its hanging position. Most Snapper samples withstood 200 cycles
of this test without malfunctioning.

The mechanical strength of the design lies in part with the material choice. Polypropylene
is a tough and ductile material and it exhibits good chemical resistance - an important
property for a product that will be regularly exposed to paraffin. Also contributing to the
strength of the Snapper are the nine holes that surround the Snapper’s central cutout. The
holes distribute local stress-concentration, preventing the Snapper from splitting in these
areas. The tooth furthest from the Snapper’s hanging point bears much of the weight of the
bottle and its contents. It has been strategically positioned perpendicular to the length of
the Snapper. Were this position to be shared by two teeth, they would splay outwards,
possibly causing the device to fail under the weight of a full 2 l bottle.




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2.10 STANDARDS COMPLIANCE

The Snapper cannot claim to comply with all South African packaging safety standards.
Neither can the design claim to be a panacea for all of the problems surrounding the
packaging of paraffin. But the Snapper could make a very significant contribution towards
reducing one of the greater risks associated with paraffin use – that of accidental paraffin
ingestion. The Snapper provides a workable means of tackling this problem and, of equal
importance, it does not find itself in conflict with the socio-economic dynamics surrounding
domestic paraffin-use in South Africa.




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3. REFERENCE LIST

CAPE ARGUS. 2004. Ban the firebomb stoves: most SA paraffin cookers are unsafe .
Cape Argus, March 16: 1-2.

LUNSCHE, S. 2006. Coca-Cola set to pour hundreds of millions into SA. Sunday Times,
Business Times. http://www.btimes.co.za/97/0202/comp/comp8.htm. Accessed: 18-07-06

SABS. 2002. The classification and labelling of dangerous substances and preparations
for sale and handling. 1st edition. Pretoria: South African Bureau of Standards.

TRURAN, G.B. 2004. The poverty dynamics of paraffin: exploring strategic counter
measures. Presentation by G.B. Truran, Domestic Use of Energy Conference. Photostat
copy.

VAN NIEKERK, P. 2003. Wax-powered low cost stove development. BSc (Mech. Eng)
dissertation, University of Cape Town.




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APPENDIX A – COSTING

COSTING
Description                                  Cost (R/unit)
Material *                                           0.18
Production **                                        0.10
Printing                                                ?
Distribution                                            ?
Retail Mark-up                                          ?
Other                                                   ?
TOTAL                                                0.28
*     0.80 mm polypropylene sheet retails for R40.56 / m2 (excluding VAT).
      When closely tessellated, the Snapper can effectively be cut from a 119 x 38 mm block.
**    Figure based on the production cost of die cut products of a similar size and complexity.




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APPENDIX B – TEST 1

TEST PROCEDURE (see Figure 8)

1.      Affix Snapper to bottle.
2.      Screw cap into position.
3.      Suspend bucket from bottle.
4.      Hang abovementioned apparatus from nail (diameter ≤ 3.00 mm).
5.      Add water to bucket until total mass supported by Snapper = 0.5 kg.
6.      Add 0.5 kg water to bucket.
7.      Wait 10 minutes.
8.      Repeat steps 6 and 7 until Snapper fails.
9.      Record maximum mass supported and failure mode.

TEST RESULTS

TEST 1 - Maximum Mass Supported by the Snapper
SAMPLE REVISION       BOTTLE TYPE         MASS (kg)    FAILURE MODE
A2 (01)               Plastic 2l             10.5      Bottle neck pulled free from Snapper
A3 (01)               Plastic 2l             10.0      Bottle neck pulled free from Snapper
A3 (02)               Plastic 1.5l           16.0      Bottle neck pulled free from Snapper




LEFT
Figure 8 – Test 1 procedure
RIGHT
Figure 9 – Sample Revision A3 (02) after Test 1



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APPENDIX C – TEST 2

TEST PROCEDURE (see Figure 10)

1.      Affix Snapper to bottle.
2.      Screw cap into position.
3.      Position hanging point over nail (diameter ≤ 3.00 mm).
4.      Push apparatus up until bottom of hanging point is touching nail.
5.      Hold bottle at 30° angle to wall.
6.      Release bottle.
7.      Repeat steps 4 – 6 until Snapper fails.
8.      Record number of cycles completed and failure mode.

TEST RESULTS

TEST 2 - Drop Test
SAMPLE REVISION            BOTTLE TYPE         CYCLES COMPLETED                FAILURE MODE
A2 (01)                    Plastic 2l          200                             Test terminated
A3 (01)                    Plastic 2l          200                             Test terminated
A3 (02)                    Plastic 1.5l        69                              Snapper collar tore*




*       The Snapper was not properly affixed to the bottle, which may account for the premature failure of
        the sample. The geometry of the Snapper needs to be updated to better accommodate 1.5 l plastic
        bottles.




LEFT
Figure 10 – Test 2 procedure
CENTRE
Figure 11 – Sample Revision A3 (01) after Test 2
RIGHT
Figure 12 – Sample Revision A3 (02) after Test 2




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APPENDIX D – GRAPHIC SPECIFICATION




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