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Poor tertiary packaging – What could it be costing you?

Supplier: Signet
22 June, 2017

As the final step of the packaging process, tertiary packaging (also known as "transport packaging") is your products' last defense against dangerous and costly damage.

Its primary purpose is to get your products to your customer safely and at the lowest possible cost to your business.

When packaging a product, your other packaging elements usually include primary and secondary packaging.


  • Primary packaging — this is the first step of the process and it has the most direct contact with your products. A water bottle would be an example of primary packaging.
  • Secondary packaging — this packaging holds your primary packaging and is usually retail-shelf ready. A case of 12 bottles of water would be an example of secondary packaging. This is often where void fill may also be used to protect your products from damage. 
  • Tertiary packaging — this last step is used for shipping and warehouse storage. Pallet wrap on a pallet of water bottles would be an example of tertiary packaging. Pallet wrap (applied by either hand or a machine) is used to stop your products from shifting during transit, which is usually caused by shocks and vibrations.


If your tertiary packaging isn't up to scratch, your pallet could tilt, lean, shift or fall during transit. This can have a range of costly consequences, such as product damage, courier truck damage and injuries to individuals handling or moving the pallet.

To find out more and learn how you can improve your tertiary packaging, click here to view Signet's "The Real Cost of Poor Tertiary Packaging" infographic.