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Category: Distribution and Materials Handling

Supply Chain News: Amazon Expanding Ships in Product Packaging Program



About 11% of Products Globally Ship in Own Packaging if Ordered Alone

Dec. 19, 2023


SCDigest Editorial Staff

In an effort to reduce waste, CO2 emissions and costs as well, Amazon is upping its ante to increase the number of items it sells that ship to consumers in their own packaging, meaning without a box or bag of some type. One of the major hubs for this work is Amazon’s Packaging Innovation Lab located just outside of Seattle.

According to an early December Amazon blog post, the company already ships about 11% of items globally without any additional packaging - and is investing to move that number higher.

Supply Chain Digest Says...

If the item is heavy and bulky, it requires additional testing. These types of items go through a compression test, which simulates the weight of other packages that might be stacked on top of it in fulfillment centers.

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Amazon says that one of the major hubs for this R&D is its Packaging Innovation Lab located just outside of Seattle. That facility is used to test a product’s original packaging to determine if it can be delivered safely without an Amazon box or bag and qualify for Amazon’s Ships in Product Packaging program.

Interestingly, that program’s web page notes that if a customer is ordering multiple items, Amazon may prioritize consolidation over shipping in the product’s packaging.

“Overall, we’re working towards filling a delivery vehicle as efficiently as possible to result in fewer trips,” that web page says.

The blog posts that brand companies can send products to the Amazon lab, approved third-party labs, or in some cases conduct the tests themselves to qualify to ship their products without Amazon packaging. If the product qualifies, it automatically begins to ship in its own packaging as the default when ordered as a single item.

However, customers if they choose can check “Add Amazon packaging” during the checkout process if they would still like added Amazon packaging.

Amazon worked with the International Safe Transit Association (ISTA), a third-party organization dedicated to the development, design, and evaluation of cost-effective and protective transport packaging.

As part of this program, ISTA monitored Amazon’s entire fulfillment network -from transporting a package to a fulfillment center to its final arrival at the customer’s doorstep - to determine the most strain a package can potentially experience during fulfillment and delivery process. Their researchers then worked with Amazon to develop a series of tests to simulate those conditions.

For its evaluation, Amazon using vibration testing to simulate the experience of traveling on various vehicle types to make sure the packaging will remain intact during transport.


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It also uses drop testing to simulate the package being picked up, moved, and hitting the ground. A machine holds each item then drops it from different angles to make sure the packaging is durable enough to withstand drops that might occur during the fulfillment process and even after delivery.


If the item is heavy and bulky, it requires additional testing. These types of items go through a compression test, which simulates the weight of other packages that might be stacked on top of it in fulfillment centers.

Amazon says that another important test for large items is the Incline Impact Test System. This simulates scenarios where an item might hit against the wall of the truck, such as when a driver must hit the brakes unexpectedly.

Amazon concludes by noting that success rates are high for items approved for the program, but that it continues to closely monitor customer feedback on those items.


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