An Industry Built On Innovation

Packaging, Stainless, Steel, Sustainability

Steel Packaging

 

Steel Can
The steel can was invented more than 200 years ago.

Cans were first used as containers for food during the Napoleonic wars. The idea for preserving food by heating it in containers was developed by Nicolas Appert. He used glass jars, which were sent to French troops on the Russian front. In 1810, British merchant Peter Durand was granted the patent for a method of preserving food and other perishable items using vessels made of various materials, including steel.

Not surprisingly, food safety is still one of the most important benefits of canned food packaging.

However, food storage is only one of the many applications of steel packaging.

Steel packaging is durable, tamper-resistant and convenient. It is also ‘shelf-stable’, meaning that it can protect the contents from deterioration for a long time. In addition to these attributes, the steel used in packaging also has an aesthetic function. After all, packaging is designed not only to store the product but also to advertise it to the consumer.

An industry built on innovation

In some countries, steel cans are also referred to as tin cans or simply tins. There are thousands of applications, from the familiar soft drink can to unusually-shaped paint tins that are easy to hold in one hand and retro designer biscuit tins. Steel packaging is used for:

  • Food
  • Beverages
  • Promotional materials
  • Aerosols
  • Paints and chemicals
  • Bottle tops and caps

The majority of steel used in packaging is tinplate, which is steel that has been coated with a layer of tin to prevent corrosion. Although tinplate only accounts for around 1% of steel production, it is a highly visible and dynamic industry. Brands and products compete for consumers’ attention on the shelves of supermarkets and other retailers.

The manufacturing processes used in steel packaging are high-tech and sophisticated. Commercial production began in 1812, in a canning factory near London that supplied food to the British army. In 1846, cans were manufactured at the rate of 60 an hour. Modern can-makers can produce up to 1,000 cans a minute.

Once the steel is coated with tin, the tinplate can be coated with polymer, lacquered and printed. The final result is an attractive, safe and functional product.

Highly recyclable

Steel holds a unique position as a sustainable packaging material because it is 100% recyclable. Steel cans are the most recycled form of packaging. A significant proportion of all the steel in a can comes from recycled sources.

 

Cited: World Steel

Ashley G. // Editor SMC

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“Clean Me” – Stainless Steel

Steel

Grain stainless

Stainless Steel is known for its ability to be a clean surface that resists corrosion and rust. Because of this stainless steel is a popular choice in kitchens and bathrooms. If you’ve had stainless steel around in your home for very long, you know that it has the potential to live up to its name. Dirt, dust and grime, however, put stainless steel at risk for corrosion and rust. Luckily, it responds well to cleaning, as long as certain rules are followed. In general, you want to start with the basics, and work your way up from there as needed.

Just like wood, steel also has a grain. These are the very faint striations that can be found on the surface of your appliance. An entire sheet of steel will have the same direction grain. That said, an appliance will usually have other steel pieces attached, such as handles and knobs. These other pieces may have a different direction grain, so make sure you are aware of this.

Will your appliance be ruined if you do not clean in the direction of the grain? Nope. Nothing dramatic will happen! Only that If you wipe perpendicular to the grain, more cleaning residue (mixed with any grime already on the steel) may get deeper into the tiny little crevices of the grain.

There are a few different methods that can be used to clean your stainless steel


No. 1


 

Routine cleaning can be accomplished by using warm water and a cloth. This is the least risky option for cleaning stainless steel, and honestly just plain water works to clean in most situations. Dry with a towel or cloth to prevent water spots. This is really important, since minerals in water can leave marks on stainless steel. Wipe in the directions of the polish lines for best and most beautiful results. Microfiber cleaning cloths can be a great option to use when cleaning stainless steel because they do a great job of absorbing all of the water without scratching the surface.

 


No. 2


For cleaning that needs more power, mild detergent and warm water can do a great job without damaging your stainless steel. A drop of mild dish detergent and warm water is often all you need to get tougher dirt off of your stainless steel. You can start with a small sink of warm water with a few drops of dish soap. You can also have a small drop of dish soap on a cloth. Add warm water to the cloth and rub the dish soap to suds up your cleaning cloth. Wipe down the dirty area. After you’ve finished washing away the dirt, make sure you rinse the surface thoroughly to prevent staining and spotting. It is important to towel dry to prevent water spots which can be caused by minerals in water.


No. 3


Fingerprints are one of the biggest complaints about stainless steel, but can be taken care of by using glass cleaner or household ammonia. Personally, I prefer glass cleaner. No matter what you decide to use, spray the cleaner on a microfiber cloth. You can spray directly on the stainless steel, but may end up with drips, or wasting a lot of cleaner that wasn’t needed. Wipe the stainless steel area gently in a circular motion to remove the finger print. Repeat as needed. Rinse thoroughly and towel dry. There are some newer types of finishes for stainless steel that resist fingerprints You may consider this a necessity if your pint-sized helpers leave their mark on your stainless steel appliances.


No. 4


 

If you have had staining or scratching, or need to polish your stainless steel, a stainless steel cleaner may be a good option. Some of these cleaners and polishes can help minimize scratching and remove stains. They also can polish surfaces nicely. Read the directions on the stainless steel cleaner and test in an inconspicuous spot. Be sure to rinse thoroughly and towel dry.

 

See your website for more stainless steel applications by clicking here.

Cited: About Home

Ashley G. // Editor SMC