Impenetrable packaging


Can someone please explain to me why something like a USB memory stick measuring around 5cm in length and significantly less in width and depth, requires a protective sheath of polyethylene the size of a small country in order for it to be safety displayed in a shop?

Is it a theft deterrent, a storage issue or simply a way to advertise the product more effectively on the shop floor? Whatever the reason, it’s a massive waste of space and resource, and needlessly contributes to the ever-growing problem of non-recyclable rubbish. But that’s not the worst thing.

No, the worst thing is that this amazing feat of plastic engineering is pretty much impossible for any normal human being to infiltrate. Those who have had their hands ripped off in an agricultural accident and replaced by sharpened pincers may have something of a chance, but for those of us bestowed with digits of mere flesh, bone and keratin, we are inevitably going to lose our access rights.

It’s like the manufacturer is actively trying to dissuade us from using the item we have just purchased. Even armed with a pair of sturdy scissors, you’d be hard pressed to get into the packaging with anything that could be safety defined as ‘ease’. In fact I’ve often cut myself on the sharp edges of plastic that result from successful infiltration. Let me place that into context – I have been rewarded for paying money for an item with an unwanted Krypton Factor-style challenge, followed by bloodletting.

And all for an extra 8 Gb of memory storage.

One comment

  1. Jim

    I bought a Stanley knife from B&Q packaged in this same impenetrable plastic. If only I had some sort of sharp instrument to open it…



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