The Holidays are a time for gift giving and receiving. Lots and lots of new gadgets will make their way in to the hands of children both old and young over the next week. Unfortunately, many of those gadgets will come packaged in horrible, eco-hostile and impossible to open clamshell packaging.
Thousands of products now come in this packaging, since it’s relatively inexpensive, allows the consumer to see the product, and makes the product bulky enough that it’s difficult to shoplift. And thousands of people will end up in the ER this holiday season after injuring themselves either on the sharp, stiff edge of the packaging as they attempt to pry it open, or with the unsafe implement they’ve engaged to try to get through the plastic armor. This post was, in fact, inspired by the large cut in the the back of my hand, thanks to my efforts towards opening a new hard drive with a large kitchen knife.
So, how to handle the horrid packaging both easily and safely? Always inspect the packaging closely; there may be pre-cut perforations around the edges or other ways to easily open the package. If you do attempt to carefully open it using heavy duty scissors or box cutters, ensure you inspect the packaging first – you don’t want to harm any of the contents, and you also don’t want to harm yourself.
There are also several gadgets on the market, if you can find them. The Open It! appears to be a combination set of garden shears and box cutters, but as the video attests, it seems to handle clamshells pretty well. Mind you, if you have garden shears around, that might be more convenient. And less expensive. Another easy, inexpensive alternative? Your handy dandy kitchen can opener.
Your best bet, above all, is to avoid products wrapped in clamshell packaging altogether — it’s easier on both the environment and your blood pressure. If you do end up with some of this stress-inducing stuff under your tree, make sure you recycle it afterwards — and send your feedback to the company whose product you’ve got, to let them know how user-hostile their packaging is. Maybe they’ll listen for the next holiday season.
Photo Credit: Miss_Rogue on Flickr